25th Human Rights Banquet September 28, 2024 (MORE INFO TO COME)

Human Rights Banquet - Keynotes


The KCTFHR established an annual human right banquet beginning in 1998 that each year features a keynote speaker, presentation of civil rights awards, and using a portion of the banquet profits for annual minority student scholarships at North Idaho College. The banquet attendees have ranged from 300 to 520 each year totaling more than 8,000 as of the 2018 banquet.


Listed below are the names and titles of the keynoters beginning in 1998:


Year 1998

Idaho Governor Phil Batt


Year 1999

Dr. Clay Jenkinson portraying Thomas Jefferson; Ms. Suzan Jarvis portraying Eleanor Roosevelt; and Dr. Henry William Fritz portraying President Abraham Lincoln. The three academic scholars are well-known Chautauqua performers.


Year 2000

Jimmie Lucas Chautauqua performer portraying Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.


Year 2001

Morris Dees, co-founder of the Southern Poverty Law Center


Year 2002

Ms. Parvin Darabi, critic of the Iranian Government, lecturer and author


Year 2003

Mike McGavick, CEO of SAFECO


Year 2004

United States Senator Mike Crapo (R) of Idaho


Year 2005

Ms. Debbie Bird, Diversity officer of SAFECO


Year 2006

Jim Hood. (D) Mississippi Attorney General


Year 2007

Francis Bok, author of book detailing his years as a slave in Sudan


Year 2008

Gregory C. Carr, founder of the Gregory C. Carr Center for Human Rights at Harvard University


Year 2009

Ms. Nontombi Naomi Tutu, daughter of Archbishop Desmond Tutu


Year 2010

Reginald Weaver, former President of the National Education Association


Year 2011

Arun Gandhi, grandson of Mahatma Gandhi


Year 2012

Jiani Yang, a dissenter and former political prisoner in The Peoples Republic of China


Year 2013

Dr. Gregory Stanton, president of Genocide Watch


Year 2014

Bruce Reed, former advisor to Presidents Bill Clinton and Barack Obama and former Chief-of-Staff to Vice-President Joe



Year 2015

Doug Echols, Mayor of Rock Hill, South Carolina


Year 2016

John Stocks, Executive Director of the National Education Association & former Idaho State Senator


Year 2017

Phil Tyler, former president of the Spokane Chapter of NAACP


Year 2018

Dr. Raymond Reyes, Gonzaga University Associate Academic VP & Chief Diversity Officer


Year 2019

Cherie Buckner-Webb, Idaho State Senator.  Rev. Happy Watkins recited passages of Dr. Martin Luther King's "I Have a Dream" speech.


Year 2020 (Canceled due to COVID-19)

Dr. Cornell Clayton, Director WSU Thomas S. Foley Institute of Public Policy

and Public service.


Year 2021 banquet was canceled due to COVID-19


Year 2022 - Premiere Documentary

"What Are Idaho's True Values: This is Who We Are"


Year 2023

Josh Hurwit, Idaho U.S. Attorney



NOTE: The title held by the speaker at the time of the banquet may no longer be