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The Check-In: On The Frontlines Doing The Work

KBIA host Janet Saidi is ready to take calls.

In this episode, we're checking in with people who have been and currently are on the frontlines of the civil rights movements of today and years ago.

Professor Mike Middleton is a well known name and leader in higher education in Missouri. He’s served as an interim president of the University of Missouri during the crucial time following the Concerned Student 1950 protests in 2015. He’s also served as interim president at Lincoln University and as a vice provost and deputy chancellor at MU.

But well before all that, back in the '60s and '70s, Professor Middleton was among the first-ever law students at MU and went on to become the school's first ever black professor in MU’s law school. So with all the other titles Professor Middleton has had, we can add to that: pioneer. 

It seems like a really good time to check in with someone in our community who has experienced on the frontlines civil unrest, racial discimination and racial conflict in times that might rival the times we’re in today, and who has pioneered their way through it.

We also check in with Traci Wilson-Kleekamp, someone who is working on the frontlines for change very much in the local, every-day present. She is the president of the influential Columbia group Race Matters, Friends, which also runs a community bail fund. She tirelessly engages with and confronts our systems of education, policing, politics and policy.

To hear the live show, tune in weekdays at noon. Also, you can leave us a voicemail at 877-532-0971 about how you are handling the current crises our region is facing and any questions you have.

Kristofor left KBIA in fall of 2021
Janet Saidi is a producer and professor at KBIA and the Missouri School of Journalism.
Zia Kelly graduated with degrees in journalism and public health at the University of Missouri - Columbia in May 2020.. Outside of the newsroom, she works part-time as a personal trainer and competes as an Olympic-style weightlifter.
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