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Press Release for Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Distinguished Voices Lecture Series Features Peace in the Middle East: Inspiring Voices and Stories

Media Contact: Andrea Mestdagh, Specialist

Department of Public Relations

(904) 620-2192

The University of North Florida, The Atlantic Institute of Jacksonville, and the Interfaith Center at UNF will host a panel discussion, “Peace in the Middle East: Inspiring Voices and Stories – Faith Leaders and Millennial Change-Makers,” at 4 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 28, in the Adam W. Herbert University Center, Building 43, Grand Banquet Hall, Room 1044, on campus, as part of the Distinguished Voices Lecture Series.


The event will be a faith-based civil discourse about conflicts in the Middle East, particularly between Israel and Palestine. Faith leaders will explore the role faith communities may play in resolving the conflict. Young voices will be speaking about their hopes and aspirations as members of a faith or other values-based community often divided over the intractable conflict between Israel and Palestine, the rise of extremist groups such as ISIS, the treatment of religious minorities and the divisive rhetoric that may have driven a wedge between communities here in the U.S. and Jacksonville.


Members of the discussion panel are Rabbi Donniel Hartman, president of the New York and Jerusalem based Shalom Hartman Institute; Imam Abduallah Antepli, chief representative of Muslim affairs, Duke University; and Dr. Molly T. Marshall, president and professor of theology and spiritual formation at Central Baptist Theological Seminary. Additionally, student leaders from Jewish, Christian, Muslim and Secular Humanist groups will serve as panel respondents. The event will be moderated by Melissa Ross, host of WJCT’s First Coast Connect.


All Distinguished Voices lectures are free and open to the public; however, an e-ticket is required. To obtain an e-ticket, visit . For more information about the event, contact Rachael McNeal, Interfaith Center coordinator, at (904) 620-2837 or


 The mission of the Interfaith Center is to engage the UNF campus around religious pluralism and provide distinctive programs and services for students to voice values, engage with others, act together and become a leader.


UNF, a nationally ranked university located on an environmentally beautiful campus, offers students who are dedicated to enriching the lives of others the opportunity to build their own futures through a well-rounded education.