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Donna M. Loring Lecture Series

The Maine Women Writers Collection sponsors the Donna M. Loring Lecture Series, which addresses current or historic Native American or aboriginal issues, indigenous rights, as well as women’s issues, civil rights, and issues of fairness and equality as they overlap with the concerns of tribal peoples.

The Loring Lectures take place annually in the fall, usually on the UNE Biddeford Campus.

About Donna Loring

Donna Loring

Author and legislator Donna Loring grew up on Indian Island and graduated from the University of Maine at Orono with a B.A. in political science. Loring is a Vietnam veteran. Her professional background is in law enforcement, and she is a graduate of the Maine Criminal Justice Academy. She was the first woman police academy graduate to become police chief in the state of Maine and served as the police chief for the Penobscot Nation during the 1980s. Loring was appointed aide de camp to then-governor Angus King and was advisor to the governor on women veterans’ affairs.

Loring was also Penobscot Tribal Representative to the Maine State Legislature. Among her legislative accomplishments, Loring authored and sponsored LD 291 “An Act to Require Teaching Maine Native American History and Culture in Maine’s Schools.” Governor Angus King signed the Act into law on June 14th 2001. The law is changing the way Maine views its history. Loring’s book, In the Shadow of the Eagle (Tilbury House, 2008) chronicles her experiences as the tribal representative to the State Legislature.

The Maine Women Writers Collection acquired Loring’s personal and literary papers in 2009. This acquisition is the first given by a Native American woman to the University’s collections. Loring’s papers enrich the research potential of the MWWC and broaden our collections to represent the varied life experiences of women authors from significant yet traditionally underrepresented groups.

Upcoming Lectures

The next Loring Lecture is planned to take place in the fall of 2019 and will be announced here.

Past Lectures

OCTOBER 1, 2018
Wabanaki Basketmaking Traditions Under Threat? Art, Culture, and the Future of Maine Indian Basketmaking
MARCH 19, 2018
Penobscot Nation v. Janet Mills: A Case of Cultural Identity and Tribal Stewardship
April 6, 2017
“Mary and Molly: In the Spirit of the Ancestors” a play by Donna M. Loring
NOVEMBER 12, 2015
Racism in Maine: Beyond Black and White
OCTOBER 28, 2014
The Maine Wabanaki-State Child Welfare Truth and Reconciliation Commission: New Opportunities for Understanding Post-Colonialism
NOVEMBER 7, 2013
Listening with Fifteen Hearts: Life Stories of Women across Cultures
NOVEMBER 8, 2012
Winona LaDuke: Environmental Justice from a Native Perspective
OCTOBER 11, 2011
Truth and Reconciliation in Maine: a Model of Collaboration and Process of Decolonization
OCTOBER 12, 2010
Out of the Depths: A personal account of a residential school experience and the effects of Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s apology many years later
OCTOBER 1, 2009
Weaving Waponahki Policy toward Decolonization