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Convocation speakers will discuss death row on March 12

Frances O. Henley “Freddie” Nixon and Julie Vandiver will present “Life and Death on the Row: a Personal and a Legal Story” to Lyon College at 6 p.m. Thursday, March 12, in Nucor Auditorium.

Since 1977, Nixon has been an advocate for abolition of the death penalty. She has served on the Board of the Arkansas Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty since the late 1970s and has also served on the national board. For 20 years, she was the coordinator for the United Methodist Women’s Ministry to Incarcerated Women and Their Children.

Vandiver is an assistant federal public defender in the Capital Habeas Unit of the Eastern District of Arkansas. She represents Arkansas death-sentenced prisoners in habeas corpus challenges in federal courts and in ancillary proceedings in state courts. Vandiver has served on the board of the Arkansas Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty as the liaison to death row and has served on the Steering Committee for the UALR Racial Disparities in the Criminal Justice System Research Project since 2011.