October 23-24, 2020

Disrupting the Past, Questioning the Present,
and Imagining the Future


Conference Schedule


About the 2020 Dialogues

In 2020, we mark the centennial of the 19th amendment, recognizing both its historical importance but also the unequal effects of the legislation. 2020 is also an election year whose outcome will have consequences for our planet and for the most vulnerable amongst us such as people of color, women, queer, and trans folks. The 2020 Dialogues seeks to provoke discussion, inspire action, and foster community in this watershed moment.

Dialogues proposals were all based on the theme: “Disrupting the Past, Questioning the Present, and Building the Future,” and sub-themes, which included: elections, democracy, decolonizing pedagogy, digital disruptions, local/global activism, bodies and identities, art, and performance.

We have featured speakers and event videos for your enjoyment!



Featured Speakers

Michelle Schenandoah

The 2020 Dialogues featured keynote speaker and WILL award recipient Michelle Schenandoah, JD, LL.M, MS, a traditional member of the Oneida Nation of New York Wolf Clan of the Haudenosaunee Confederacy. Schenandoah is an inspirational writer, speaker, and thought leader. She founded Rematriation Magazine, an Indigenous women’s online multimedia platform. She focuses on community development and leadership for Indigenous women and their communities.  

Michelle Shenandoah, Keynote, October 23, 2020

Our noon day event featured Philip Silvey and the University of Rochester Women’s Chorus, sharing their pre-recorded performance and live conversation hosted by Deborah Uman.

Photo of Jacqui Lewis
Jacqui Lewis

Our closing address featured the Reverend Jacqui Lewis and Alyson Palmer. The Rev. Jacqui Lewis is a Senior Minister at Middle Collegiate Church, a 1,300-member multiethnic, welcoming, and inclusive congregation in New York City. Ordained in the Presbyterian Church (USA), Dr. Lewis hosted “Just Faith,” an on-demand television program on MSNBC.com and is a frequent media commentator.

Photo of Alyson Palmer
Alyson Palme

Alyson Palmer is a singer/songwriter/artist/activist best known for her ongoing work with the award-winning vocal trio, BETTY. For over three decades, she has toured internationally and recorded with BETTY, whose music has been featured on dozens of musical collaborations, films, ads and television series, including The L Word, Ugly Betty, Weeds and more. Alyson is the creator and director of 1@1, the women’s equality action organization. 



Continuing in the footsteps of the seminal 1848 women’s rights convention, the Seneca Falls Dialogues is a grassroots coming together of activists, artists, students, and academics, with the intention of fostering collaborative learning and feminist action. The Dialogues are a collaborative effort sponsored by the Women’s Institute for Learning and Leadership (WILL) to reinvigorate Seneca Falls as a site of feminist activism and intellectual exchange. More about the Dialogues and its sponsors can be found here.