Virtual Leon Jett Memorial Lecture: “The Compton Cowboys” with Walter Thompson-Hernandez

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Virtual Leon Jett Memorial Lecture: “The Compton Cowboys” with Walter Thompson-Hernandez

February 20 @ 1:00 pm - 2:00 pm

New York Times Reporter Walter Thompson-Hernandez will speak about his book, The Compton Cowboys: The New Generation of Cowboys in America’s Urban Heartland, in this year’s annual Leon Jett Memorial Lecture.

Free Virtual Event (Zoom)

Register here.

About this Event

Leon Jett was the Eiteljorg’s Public Programs Manager from 1999 to 2007 when he taken from us at a much-too-young age.

In his eight years at the Eiteljorg, Leon made his mark on the museum through his dedication to quality programming and to working within the Indianapolis community to ensure that anyone coming to the Eiteljorg could see themselves in the museum—in the stories, in the art and exhibitions, and in the programming.

In keeping with Leon’s personal and professional mission, we instituted this annual memorial lecture to highlight the contributions and all-too-often unknown stories of historical and contemporary African Americans in the West.

About the Guest Speaker:

Walter Thompson-Hernández is a Los Angeles–based New York Times reporter and host. Before joining the Styles desk, he was part of a multimedia Times reporting team called “Surfacing” that covers marginalized and offbeat communities. He has written for NPR, Fusion, the Guardian, Remezcla, and other media outlets, and has reported from every continent and throughout the United States. He received his master’s degree in Latin American Studies from Stanford University, and was enrolled in the UCLA Chicano Studies Ph.D. program for one year before leaving to write for the Times. Before graduate school, Walter played professional basketball throughout Latin America.

About the Book:

The Compton Cowboys is a story about trauma and transformation, race and identity, compassion and belonging in one of the most stigmatized cities in America. Drawing on a year-long immersion with a group of friends who choose horses over gangs and violence, and who struggle to keep their ranch from going under, Walter Thompson-Hernández pushes back against stereotypes to reveal an urban community in complexity, tragedy, and rebirth.


February 20
1:00 pm - 2:00 pm
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