Lance Wheeler, education and public relations manager for the Margaret Walker Center, will appear as a panelist for the W.K. Kellogg Foundation’s discussion, “The Power of Place: Legacy & Impact of Colonization and the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade,” on Aug. 11 and Aug. 25.
The four-person panel discussion, closed to the public, will examine the roots of colonization while looking at human development from the critical historical point and the choice to subway others based on race.
Wheeler will offer a brief overview of the U.S. domestic slave trade, emphasizing Mississippi, including the importance of changing narratives as it relates to understanding the power of language and interpretation.
“This panel discussion needs to happen in our daily conversations with friends, family, coworkers and associations,” Wheeler said. “People need to recognize and understand that blackness exists everywhere in the world, and we live in a country that tries not to give us credit for our contributions. We’re in the landscape, architecture, clothing, politics, etc. We of the African Diaspora are everywhere, and you cannot unsee us.”
Before joining JSU, Wheeler served as curator for the Two Mississippi Museums. Regarding the importance of public engagement, Wheeler said, “Museums must redefine themselves and reemerge as institutions that operate as resource centers that allow all community members to share their voices and give an honest and inclusive narrative.”
A native of New Jersey, Wheeler earned his Bachelor of Arts in history from Belmont Abbey College. He attained a Master of Arts in history with a concentration in museum studies from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro.
Wheeler is also the father of a 5-year-old son, Landon.