VCU symposium to explore the role of urban communities in improving housing, education and public policy

L. Douglas Wilder, 66th governor of Virginia. (Courtesy photo)
L. Douglas Wilder, 66th governor of Virginia. (Courtesy photo)

By Angelica Bega

The 2018 Wilder Symposium at Virginia Commonwealth University will explore the challenges and opportunities facing urban communities as they seek to improve in the areas of housing, education and public policy.

The L. Douglas Wilder School of Government and Public Affairs will host the symposium, “By the People: The Role of Urban Communities in Improving Housing, Education and Public Policy,” from 6 to 8 p.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 3, at the W.E. Singleton Center for the Performing Arts, 922 Park Ave. The event will be free and open to the public.

Leading the conversation will be:

  • L. Douglas Wilder, 66th governor of Virginia
  • Susan Gooden, Ph.D., interim dean of the Wilder School
  • U.S. Rep. Robert “Bobby” Scott of Virginia’s 3rd District
  • Melody Barnesco-director for policy and public affairs for the Democracy Initiative at the University of Virginia; former assistant to the president and director, White House Domestic Policy Council
  • Anthony “Tony” Millerformer deputy secretary and chief operating officer, U.S. Department of Education
  • William “Bill” Spriggs, Ph.D., chief economist, AFL-CIO; professor of economics, Howard University; former assistant secretary for the Office of Policy at the Department of Labor
  • Fabrizio Fasulo, Ph.D., director of the Wilder School's Center for Urban and Regional Analysis
  • Genevieve Siegel-Hawley, Ph.D., associate professor, educational leadership, VCU School of Education
  • Benjamin Teresa, Ph.D., assistant professor, Wilder School's Urban and Regional Studies and Planning program

Robert “Bob” Holsworth, Ph.D., managing partner of DecideSmart, will moderate. Matthew Conrad, executive director of government and board relations for VCU, will make remarks.

To submit a question for the panelists’ consideration, email

The hashtag for the event is #wilderforum2018.