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Archbishop Desmond Tutu on Public Health Awareness

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Date and time
Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Archbishop Desmond Tutu addresses an audience at Springfield Symphony Hall in Springfield, Massachusetts as American International College and the Medical Knowledge Institute launch the Desmond Tutu Lecture Series on Public Health Awareness. Archbishop Tutu is introduced by Peter Bittel, president of Futures HealthCore of Springfield, an AIC Trustee and co-founder of The Medical Knowledge Institute (MKI), an international non-profit organization dedicated to healthcare education and healthcare information as a human right. The lecture is introduced by WGBY Director of Public Affairs Jim Madigan. John and Linda Howell, who have spent time with Archbishop Tutu in South Africa, join the discussion to offer commentary after the lecture. As part of the college's commitment to improving the lives of the children and families in the Greater Springfield area, American International College has partnered with the Medical Knowledge Institute to launch the Desmond Tutu Lecture Series on Public Health Awareness.

Desmond Tutu is a well-known South African activist, whose efforts to solve the issue of apartheid, during 1980s, fetched him worldwide fame. Born in 1931, in Klerksdorp, Tutu chose teaching as his profession. After serving as a lecturer for few years, he pursued Theology. He was the first black person to become the Archbishop of Cape Town. He also became the first black Bishop of Johannesburg. Tutu is the second South African to receive Noble Peace Prize. Tutu became the voice of the 'voiceless' black people, who suffered from racial discrimination in South Africa. His lectures and writings at home and abroad played a significant role in solving the issue of apartheid. Apart from this, Desmond Tutu has organized several campaigns to fight AIDS, poverty and racism. The Noble laureate has compiled several books of his speeches and sayings. Desmond Tutu was the head of Truth and Reconciliation Commission and at present, is the chairperson of 'The Elders'.
Peter Bittel is co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of The Futures HealthCore, a school partner in special education efficiency and accountability serving more than 30,000 students and individuals. Dr. Bittel has more than 35 years of clinical and executive leadership experience in the areas of special education, rehabilitation and developmental disabilities. He has taught on the primary, secondary, undergraduate, and graduate school levels..
Jim Madigan joined WGBY/57 Public Television in December, 1990, serving first as Senior Producer for Public Affairs and now as Director of Public Affairs. He currently hosts two weekly programs -- *Doctors on Call*, a medical information and call-in program, and *The State We're In*, which focuses on Massachusetts politics as well as national and international affairs.
John Howell is the retired Dir. of Research for the Springfield Public schools and adjunct professor at WNEC. While on sabbatical he spent 6 months at the University of Cape Town, SA in both 1989 and 1996.
Linda Howell is a retired nurse who worked in the Mental Health field. She and her husband spent 3 weeks in South Africa in February 2010.