'Orange is the New Black' actress Laverne Cox to speak at Pruis Hall in February

Laverne Cox in a scene from Netflix
Laverne Cox in a scene from Netflix

Emmy-award winning actress and transgender advocate Laverne Cox will appear on campus at 7:30 p.m. on Feb. 23 in Pruis Hall. 

Best known for her role as “Sophia Burset,” Cox plays an incarcerated African-American woman in the Netflix series “Orange is the New Black." Cox was also named Time Magazine’s 4th most influential fictional character of 2013. 

Lauren Berger, assistant director of Student Life and Excellence in Leadership adviser, said the organization is looking forward to the speakers they are bringing to campus this semester. 

“Every year we put together a list of people that we think would be inspiring and can talk to our students about leadership and their experiences,” she said. “[Cox] was just someone that was recommended to us and someone I thought would be really great here at Ball State.”

According to Spectrum president Christie McCauley, Cox will be giving a speech entitled “Ain’t I a Woman: My Journey to Womanhood." Other EIL speakers this semester include Pulitzer Prize winner Sheryl WuDunn, and Rev Run, a founding member of the hip-hop group Run DMC. 

The fourth speaker in the EIL series has been announced as Rainn Wilson, also known as "Dwight Schrute" from the hit TV show "The Office."

"Ain't I a Woman: My Journey to Womanhood" is a free event open to the public and seating is general admission. 

Berger said there is a possibility the event will be moved from Pruis Hall to John R. Emens Auditorium, based on demand. 

“It sounds like students are really excited for [Cox] and that’s fantastic,” she said. 


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