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The University of Kentucky Interfaith Dialogue Organization (IDO) and Rumi Forum (Washington, D.C.), with the support of Student Government, Office of Student Affairs, Office of the Provost, Office of International Affairs and MLK Jr. Cultural Center, sponsored the 3rd Annual Dialogue Dinner with the theme “Diversity, Unity and Community”, on Monday, November 17, 2008 in the Boone Center.

The University of Kentucky student organization Interfaith Dialogue Organization (IDO) and Rumi Forum organized this dinner to assemble members of the campus community to recognize and discuss their similarities rather than differences.

“The idea behind this dialogue dinner is simply bringing people together around the table from different professions and walks of life in order to talk about some of the most important issues we face and to listen to each other.” said Mehmet Saracoglu, President of IDO.

Students, community leaders, politicians, campus administrators and others joined the member and organizers from IDO and Rumi Forum. Speakers included UK Provost Kumble Subbaswamy; Jena Luedtke, Director of the Interfaith and Intercultural Dialogue (Rumi Forum); the Rev. Nancy Jo Kemper, Executive Director of the Kentucky Council of Churches; Colmon Eldridge, Executive Assistant to the Governor; and Jonathan Miller, Secretary of the Kentucky Finance and Administration Cabinet.

In addition, Interfaith Dialogue Excellence Awards (IDEAs) were presented to Chester Grundy, Director of Multicultural Student Programming, by Judy “J.J.” Jackson, UK Vice President for Institutional Diversity; to Rabbi Marc Kline of the Lexington Temple Adath Israel by Mehri Niknam, Executive Director of the Joseph Interfaith Foundation of Britain; to David Bettez, Director of External Relations in the UK Office of International Affairs, by UK Board of Trustees Chair Mira Ball; to Marian Guinn, Chief Executive Officer of God’s Pantry Food Bank, by Lexington Mayor Jim Newberry; to Peter Berres, Assistant Dean for Student Affairs in the UK College of Health Sciences by Jena Luedtke from the Rumi Forum.

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