Women’s Center Hosts Clothesline Project Through Oct. 11 And ‘Take Back The Night’ Rally Featuring Linda Walker, Mother Of Slain UND Student Dru Sjodin Oct. 8

‘Take Back the Night’ rally

The University of North Dakota Women’s Center will host the 18th annual display of the North Dakota Clothesline Project, beginning today through Oct. 10, from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., and Oct. 11, from 8 a.m. to noon, in the Memorial Union Ballroom on the UND campus. The “Take Back the Night Rally” will be held on Tuesday, Oct. 8 at 7 p.m. in the Memorial Union Ballroom.

The keynote speaker at the “Take Back the Night Rally” will be Linda Walker, a champion of victims’ rights and advocate for safety of women, young adults and children.

The purpose of the Clothesline Project is to bear witness to the survivors as well as the victims of violence, and help with the healing process for those who have lost a loved one or are survivors of violence. The Clothesline Project is also held to educate, document, and raise society’s awareness about the problem of violence in the state of North Dakota. The project features decorated T-shirts representing stories told by survivors, family members and/or friends of the victims (those who have died as a result of interpersonal violence). The T-shirts are color coded to represent the many forms of violence. We encourage everyone to walk through the project.

About Linda Walker:

Walker lost her 22-year-old daughter, Dru Sjodin, a UND student, in 2003, when she was kidnapped and murdered by a sex offender. He has now been convicted and sentenced to death.

Walker has traveled throughout the country educating college students, law enforcement personnel and the media to raise awareness of the threat of sexual violence. She has lobbied Congress and addressed the House Judiciary Committee in support of the National Children’s Protection Safety Act.

On July 27, 2006, Walker’s efforts were rewarded when she sat in the White House Rose Garden to witness signing into law, the “Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act;” which included “Dru’s Law,” legislation that provided sex offender information across state lines.

Walker joined the families of other kidnapped children to form The Surviving Parents Coalition, (SPC), a child protection lobbying group. The SPC has appeared in People Magazine twice and has been honored as a recipient of the People Magazine 2007, “Heroes Among Us” award.

The SPC partnered with “radKIDS,” a nonprofit organization that is the revolutionary leader in personal empowerment safety education for children. Walker served on the radKIDS Board of Directors, and now because of the generosity of Limited Brands Corporation is working with radKIDS as its Development Officer.

On March 26, 2011, Walker was presented with the U.S. Department of Justice and the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Director’s Community Leadership Award in Washington, D.C.

Walker’s prayer that through her work, Dru’s Sjodin’s memory will live on and result in safer communities for society’s most vulnerable ? children.

Help take a stand against violence. This issue affects everyone. Come support the cause. For more information, call the UND Women’s Center at 701.777.4300.

David L. Dodds
Media Relations/Writer & Editor
Office of University Relations
264 Centennial Drive Stop 7144
Grand Forks, ND 58202-7144
701.777.5529 | 701.777.4616 fax