Humanity 101 - Endorsements


"I commend the Humanity 101 effort by Project Humanities at Arizona State University as it is an admirable effort to promote fundamental human values such as kindness, compassion, etc. among educators and students. These human values, which are the art of what I call secular ethics, have the capacity to make our lives happier. I hope the initiative will be able to reach to the widest number of communities and peoples."
- His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama



"I applaud the ambitious effort of Dr. Neal A. Lester and Project Humanities at Arizona State University to remind each of us of our shared humanity. Humanity 101 and its principles are about human decency and self-empowerment. What could be more necessary in our daily actions and interactions?"
- Toni Morrison, Recipient of the Nobel Prize in Literature and the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction



"Arizona State University is proud to be home to Project Humanities and the Humanity 101 initiative, designed to ultimately become a worldwide movement encouraging humanity to operate at its best. Humanity 101 provides a critically needed and sustained collective consciousness around key principles such as self-reflection and compassion. These principles—the “how” we live life and communicate with others—are often the difference between peace and conflict, progress and exploitation, and hope and despair. This Movement’s time is now."
- Michael M. Crow, President, Arizona State University



"In order to have a positive impact in the world, we all must place emphasis on respect, integrity, compassion, forgiveness, kindness, empathy, and self-reflection. Jesus perfectly embodied all of those traits in His life and is my example for daily striving to live out those principles. I commend efforts, such as the work of Humanity 101, that remind us of the opportunities we have to create positive change that could ultimately change the world."
- Kurt Warner, Retired NFL Quarterback, Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year, CEO of Kurt Warner First Things First Foundation



"As we lift the fog of war to allow the sunshine of peace, it is both a pleasure and a comfort to know Project Humanities is here helping us become better human beings. Life is a good idea. Love and laughter are as much a part of life as tears and mourning. We are human—an emotional two-legged animal. I am so proud of Neal Lester and this Humanities Project."
- Nikki Giovanni, Poet and Distinguished University Professor, Virginia Tech University (Blacksburg, VA)



"I take the pledge and endorse these values as I was raised with these imperative values and have tried to live by them both in the philosophy behind my art and in my day to day life.Thank you all for carrying this message of kindness, compassion and hope to all our world. We need these values more than ever now in our world today. Bravo to you all!!! I am willing to stand with you and work with you now and in the future."
- Beth Ames Swartz, Arizona artist



"The Southern Poverty Law Center’s mission is to fight hate, teach acceptance and seek justice for society's most vulnerable members. Arizona State University Project Humanities’ Humanity 101 principles align with our vision when equal justice and equal opportunity will be a reality."
- Morris Dees, Attorney and Founder, Southern Poverty Law Center (Mobile, AL)



"Project Humanities provides a framework for shaping public awareness around humanities questions and offers a vibrant demonstration of the relevance of the humanistic tradition. There is no more critical time than now to bring people from diverse backgrounds together to discuss the most fundamental questions of human existence. Project Humanities should be commended for its leadership in fostering difficult dialogues that will inevitably strengthen our communities and further our shared commitment to social justice."
- Lynn Pasquerella, President, Mt. Holyoke College (South Hadley, MA)



"Humanity 101 offers elements to increase our level of thinking. If we are to increase our level of thinking, we must assess how and why humanity fails – and what it means that the failure is never an accident."
- Pamela Stewart, Ph.D., Historian, School of Letters and Sciences, Arizona State University



"Project Humanities declares these principles in the confidence that their implementation is a self-correcting process, a commitment that implies continuous scrutiny and redirection.The point is not to complete a final, static listing of personal and community values, but to sustain a critical and sympathetic exploration of their nature -- an exploration that includes a commitment to their practice."
- John Churchill, Secretary, The Phi Beta Kappa Society (Washington, DC)



"Humanity 101 at Arizona State University is bannering some qualities that everyone finds useful, like integrity and respect. [Project Humanities] promises much, delivers more."
- George D. Greenia, Professor of Hispanic Studies, College of William & Mary (Williamsburg, VA)



"Humanity101 is the right effort at the right time. The myths that science is practiced under a bell jar, isolated from our humanity, and that humans are apart from, rather than a part of, the natural world have been shattered and we begin the important work of integrating humanity and nature. The project scientists choose to pursue and the resources society allocates to them are and should be prioritized based on values. That cannot be done well without some serious introspection at the interface of the humanities and natural sciences. I applaud Dr. Neal Lester and Arizona State University's Project Humanities for boldly leading the way."
- Quentin Wheeler, President, College of Environmental Science and Forestry (Syracuse, NY)



"There are times in life when all that an individual has left are words--powerful instruments when used with pure intention.These intentional words evoke movement in spirit, community, and actions. Compassion, empathy, forgiveness, integrity, kindness, respect, and self-reflection are guiding words and principles of Humanity 101-- shared in classrooms, between individuals, in the workplace, and across communities through Project Humanities' intentional and heartfelt engagement. Through these intentional direct actions of sharing and connecting, these words enable us to build bridges, support one another, and move through difficult days and discussions. My deep desire is that these 7 powerful words will move oceans of people to a better place personally and professionally."
- Jeffrey Lazos-Ferns, Creative Director/Special Events, Principal, Live on Central (Arizona)



"As a newly elected official, Humanity 101 principles square directly with my approach to adaptive governance and public engagement. I aim to bring an open heart and mind to my council duties and to keep Tempe's most vulnerable populations at the center of my approach to public policy."
- Lauren Kuby, City of Tempe Councilmember (Arizona)



"Arizona State University Counseling Services supports the academic mission of the university by providing mental health, consultation, and outreach services that facilitate the student learning experience and student success, persistence, and graduation. We do this by being principled in our approach, ensuring that every student receives high-quality, inclusive, and compassionate care. The core principles of Project Humanities’ Humanity 101 perfectly align with our approach to service. The Humanities 101 posters displayed in the waiting room of all of our clinics serve as a visual reference to the interconnectedness of Arizona State University Counseling with Humanity 101 values and our belief in the power of human communities."
- Aaron D. Krasnow, Ph.D., Assistant Vice President, ASU Health Services, Director, Counseling Services, University HIPAA Privacy Officer, Arizona State University



"I endorse your work with Humanity 101. I appreciate and value what you do in the world! I think we need to embrace our humanity and find ways to be fully human with one another so we can have equality and equity!"
- The Reverend James B. Pennington, Senior Pastor, First Congregational United Church of Christ (Phoenix, AZ)



"Humanity 101 is an exciting new resource that connects us with the lives of all Americans. Neal Lester and his impressive team show us how we can talk, listen, and connect to others through the humanities. Together, we can build a better, more secure future through the humanities."
- William Ferris, Chair, National Endowment for the Humanities (1997-2001), Joel R. Williamson Eminent Professor of History, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill



"As an international human rights attorney, I see the principles of Humanities 101 played out around the world in the efforts of the grassroots to make this world a more humane place. Especially since the U.S. has lost its leadership on human rights, we need to embrace these kinds of projects to bring back the concept of dignity and fairness for all in our own country."
- Dianne Post, Attorney (Arizona)



"Humanity 101 does something absolutely revolutionary in today's society: It asks people to think about each other. Feel with each other. Challenge each other. And love each other. That it does so with a panoply of activities—workshops, plays, speeches, panel discussions, films, art, food everything—only speaks to its power in connecting us all through ourselves."
- Gustavo Arellano, columnist, ¡Ask a Mexican!(Orange County, CA)



"Project Humanities is in service of our empowerment, our active participation, to be the change we want to see in the world. Urged by our common humanity, we can create a more forgiving and respectful culture because together our choices become clear. By enjoining a conscious movement to support one another as inclusive, compassionate and kind human beings, we can inspire and be inspired by the power of simple communication: talking, listening, connecting."
- Suzanne D. Johnson, Gnosis Media (Arizona)



"The world will never change if we expect to impose our will upon others. Project Humanities and Humanity 101 look at our core values and teaches us that if we want to change the world we must look inward and express compassion, forgiveness, kindness, and respect to others and ourselves. I applaud Dr. Lester and his team for bringing this work forward at such a critical time in our history. I take the pledge and fully support these values and efforts."
- Michael Thompson, Chief of Police, Arizona State University



"Project Humanities and Dr. Neal Lester are an inspiration and an example to those of us who work in public humanities. The need for self-reflection extends beyond our years at the University, and when the University supports programs like Project Humanities, it also supports humanistic inquiry in the broader community. I commend Dr. Lester’s leadership in bringing humanities to the workplace and the community to address issues of personal ethics and social justice."
- Andrea Houchard, Director, Philosophy in the Public Interest, Northern Arizona University (Flagstaff, AZ)



"I endorse the Project Humanities at Arizona State University and ambitious effort of Dr. Neal A. Lester. Humanity 101 and its principles are about human decency and self-empowerment. There is no more critical time than now to bring people from diverse backgrounds together to discuss the most fundamental questions of human existence? As state department employee from Pakistan, I have been following human rights crises in my country and the reality is a heart-scratching situation."
- Jamal Ghazanfar, Advisor Education and Youth Affairs, U.S. Consulate General Lahore, Pakistan



"It is my pleasure to endorse the Humanity 101 Program by Project Humanities at Arizona State University which is promoting essential human values critical for the greater good of humanity. I wish the project best in engaging with the community and its impact on different people."
- Dr. Rukhsana David, Principal, Kinnaird College for Women, Lahore, Pakistan



"As an interfaith activist, I find myself talking about the values of Humanity 101 on a daily basis. Humanity 101 are shared between people of many different worldviews and traditions. They are universally important to humanity--Atheist, Christian, Jewish, Muslim, Hindu, and Buddhist--and provide a common ground upon which these groups can build a foundation for peace and tolerance, build bridges of understanding and cooperation, and build relationships based on a genuine desire to be in community together in spite of fundamental disagreements. Humanity 101 values encourage us to engage across lines of difference and inspire us to create a better world for all people."
- Johnny Martin, President and founder of Sun Devils Are Better Together and a Youth Coordinator with AZ Interfaith Movement



"Humanity 101 is at the core of what’s truly important in living a meaningful and happy life.We all need to take a few moments each day to remind ourselves to stop whatever we’re doing and take a slow, deep breath and reflect on whether we’ve given thought to others around us. That’s what helps us connect with the world rather than merely focus on ourselves. I applaud Arizona State University for introducing this concept – it’s simple, yet powerful."
- Henri Bollinger, Founder & First Vice President, The Entertainment Publicists Professional Society (EPPS)



"The commitment of the Humanity 101 endeavor is an initiative I wholeheartedly endorse. Under Neal Lester's leadership, Project Humanities offers great promise of bringing the fundamental values of humanity to the Arizona State University campuses, to Phoenix and all of Arizona, and to the nation and the world. There is no better time for us all to be reminded of the essentiality of strengthening our humanity to all with whom we associate. I salute Professor Lester for creating this important movement."
- Lattie F. Coor, President-Emeritus, Arizona State University, Chairman and CEO, Center for the Future of Arizona



"Emee-ih eh aamoo-uh. In the Aacqumeh (Acoma) Indigenous language that phrase means 'compassion-humility and love.' Different languages compose that phrase. Acoma, Spanish, American English. Yet the same human language of humility, compassion, and love underline and resound throughout the meaning of the phrase. That is the key human language I endorse. As we all must. Because that is the language of Humanity 101."
- Simon J. Ortiz, Regents Professor of English and American Indian Studies, Poet, Writer, Storyteller



"Promotion of the values that your movement aims for are especially necessary in this time of the coarsening of our society. We must truly educate in a way that will enable our students to prepare for a future in which differences are not only recognized, but are appreciated and valued, and in which the values that this country stands for are upheld and promoted, every day."
- Jane Elliott, Schoolteacher, Anti-racism Activist, Educator