Professor Jan Knippers Black has had a passion for freedom, fairness and social justice ever since she traveled to Chile as part of the very first class of Peace Corps Volunteers in 1962. Recently elected to serve on the board of directors of Amnesty International USA, Jan will receive another honor on Saturday, October 22 when the Monterey County Chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union will present her with their annual Ralph B. Atkinson Civil Liberties Award. Past winners of the award include former Congressman Leon Panetta, Assemblyman Bill Monning, and Congressman Sam Farr.
The keynote speaker at the October 22 ceremony will be Abdi Soltani, executive director of the ACLU of Northern California. Professor Black is an expert in human rights and international and comparative politics of the Western Hemisphere. Her recent publications include “The Politics of Human Rights Protection” (Rowman and Littlefield, 2009), and “Latin America, Its Problems and Its Promise,” (5th ed., Westview/Perseus Books, 2010).