December 20, 2002

Dear University and Community Members:

I would like to bring to your attention the UNLV Center for Democratic Culture (CDC), a research and public service organization dedicated to civic education, crosscultural dialogues, and international exchange. The Center derives its philosophy from American pragmatism, which regards democracy as an ongoing experiment in collective living and institution building. CDC serves as a clearing house for UNLV faculty and students conducting research on the historical experience of American democracy and its relevance to contemporary society at home and abroad.

Central to the CDC mission is the Justice & Democracy Forum series. Cosponsored by the William S. Boyd School of Law and College of Liberal Arts, the forum offers a nonpartisan venue for exchanging partisan views on issues central to the community, such as access to the justice system, evaluation and election of judges, civility in public discourse, and tort reforms. The inaugural forum took place in December of 2002, and it featured a panel discussion on “Judging the Judges: Should We Elect or Appoint Nevada Judges?”

CDC implements innovative projects that further civility, emotional intelligence, and alternative dispute resolution. The Center organizes citizen summits, facilitates dialogues between Americans and people from different countries, and sponsors international conferences that bring to Nevada foreign artists, scholars, and politicians who can enrich our understanding of cultural differences and alternative life styles. CDC also brings to UNLV guest speakers offering fresh perspectives on issues confronting our local and national community.

The Center for Democratic Culture does not endorse candidates running for office, nor does it take part in political campaigns. CDC is a nonprofit organization that raises funds for its programs through federal agencies, private foundations, and individual donors.
I invite you to sample CDC programs and take part in its activities. If you have a project consistent with the CDC mission, please feel free to bring it to the attention of CDC board members.

With good wishes,

Dmitri Shalin,
Professor and Director,
UNLV Center for Democratic Culture