Large-Scale Breakout Sessions
Saturday, 11/3, 8:20-9:10 PM
Combatting Gun Violence in Our Communities
Panel Description: Gun violence is increasingly pervasive in the U.S. As people of faith, we are called to build safe, peaceful communities where the lives and dignity of all citizens are upheld. Look at this issue through the lens of research, community organizing, and lived experience—exploring the many root causes of gun-related violence while acknowledging the resulting trauma. This panel will also focus on community responses to gun violence and ways to advocate for safe communities at the national, community, and individual level.
Sharon Homan, PH.D.
President, Chicago Gun Violence Research Collaborative
Dr. Homan is the current President of the Sinai Urban Health Institute and a biostatistician and maternal child mental health epidemiologist. Previously, she served as Professor and Chair of the Department of Biostatistics and Epidemiology and Associate Dean for Research at the University of North Texas School of Public Health in Forth Worth, Texas. Dr. Homan received her doctoral and master’s degrees from the University of Iowa, studying biostatistics, preventive medicine and environmental health. She completed additional studies in psychiatric epidemiology, theology and social ethics. Dr. Homan brings a wealth of experience and publications in public health research and evaluation, with particular dedication to maternal and child health, violence prevention and community health improvement initiatives. Her research has been funded by NIH, HRSA, CDC, DOJ, state contracts and foundations.
Student, John Carroll University and Community Organizer
Naudia Loftis is a junior at John Carroll University, and majoring in Communications with a Digital Media track. She is known for her community activism against gun violence in Cleveland, Ohio. Recently, she has been working with The Tamir Rice Foundation and handling their social media platforms. Moving forward, she plans to continue developing her skills and learning to help further her advocacy against injustice within her community.
Counsel to Senator Durbin, Senate Judiciary Committee
Dan Swanson serves as counsel to U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL), the Assistant Democratic Leader, on the Senator’s Judiciary Committee staff. He has worked for Senator Durbin since 2006, and he advises the Senator on a wide range of issues within the Judiciary Committee’s jurisdiction including judicial and Justice Department nominations, antitrust, bankruptcy, intellectual property, the civil and criminal justice systems, and consumer protection. Prior to his service with Senator Durbin, he worked for the Washington D.C. law firm Crowell & Moring and for the Office of the Attorney General of Massachusetts. He is a graduate of Duke University and Harvard Law School.