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President Obama Coming to Austin for Civil Rights Summit

Marsha Miller, University of Texas at Austin
President Obama speaking on the U.T. Austin campus about the importance of education, August 9, 2010

President Obama is planning to be in Austin on April 10 to deliver the keynote address at a Summit on Civil Rights. The event at the LBJ Presidential Library and Museum commemorates 50 years since President Johnson signed the Civil Rights Act. 

“I think we see the Obama Administration has taken active part in the national dialogue about the progress we’ve made over the past 50 years since the passage of the Civil Rights Act," says Ranjana Natarajan, a civil rights expert and professor at the University of Texas School of Law. "They’ve been working on policies to further that process, whether it’s healthcare or criminal justice reform."

Natarajan said it’s not surprising that President Obama wants to mark the anniversary as a way to reflect on progress made and what remains to be accomplished.

"He's been talking about ladders of opportunity and shared prosperity and these are goals that the administration clearly prioritizes and thinks about historically as well,"  Natarajan said.

Former Presidents Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton and George W. Bush also plan to speak at the summit April 8-10.

First Lady Michelle Obama will accompany the president when he delivers his keynote address at the summit's conclusion.

Trey Shaar is an All Things Considered producer, reporter and host. Got a tip? Email him at Follow him on Twitter @treyshaar.
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