‘Driving While Black’ focus of Vanderbilt Divinity breakfast

Vanderbilt Divinity School (Vanderbilt University)

Highlights from “Driving While Black: A Report on Racial Profiling in Metro Nashville Police Department Traffic Stops” will be shared at a Vanderbilt Divinity School Community Breakfast March 14. The event, which is open to the public, will be from 7:30 to 8:30 a.m. in the school’s Reading Room.

“Driving While Black” was released last October by Gideon’s Army, a nonprofit advocacy group for children, in collaboration with other activist and community organizations.

Speaking at the breakfast will be:

  • Amy E. Steele, assistant dean of student life at Vanderbilt Divinity School. Steele earned a doctorate of philosophy in religion (ethics and society) from Vanderbilt and a master of divinity from Vanderbilt Divinity School. She coordinates programming and worship and offers pastoral care and opportunities for public leadership and spiritual formation.
  • Rasheedat Fetuga, founder of Gideon’s Army and a former teacher in Metro Nashville Public Schools. She was an Ingram Scholar at Vanderbilt while earning a bachelor of science in elementary education from Peabody College.
  • Andrew Krinks, a doctoral candidate in theological studies at Vanderbilt and member of Gideon’s Army. Krinks earned a master of theological studies from Vanderbilt Divinity School and a bachelor of arts from Lipscomb University. His research interests include theological engagement with incarceration and theological foundations for the abolition of—and alternatives to—mass incarceration in the United States. He is a former editor of The Contributor.

In addition to talking about the study’s findings, the speakers will discuss the goals of the Truth and Reconciliation Project, recently launched by Vanderbilt Divinity School in partnership with Gideon’s Army and other community groups for people to speak out about their experiences with local police over the last decade.

“Our objective with the breakfast is to prompt discussion around the ‘Driving While Black’ report and to engage the community in the truth and reconciliation process as a methodology for community change,” Steele said. “The Divinity School will host four public hearings, starting March 28, in which individuals selected from an online process or recommended by a community group can speak about their experiences.”

The cost of the breakfast is $10 for the public. There is no charge for students, but reservations are necessary. Please call 615-936-8453 or register online.