Southern Methodist University professor Dr. Rick Halperin, a longtime human rights activist, will present the universityís first Speaker Symposium Lecture of the year on Monday, Sept. 17, at 7:30 p.m. in the O.A. Grant Building, room 116, at Tarleton State University.

The lecture is free and open to the public.

Halperin, director of the Embrey Human Rights Program in SMUís Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences, joined SMU in 1985 as an academic advisor and history teacher, and began teaching human rights courses in 1990.

Halperin has held many leadership positions in human rights and social justice organizations, including Amnesty International USA, for which, during his 40-year affiliation, heís served as chair of the board of directors three times. He also has served on the board of directors for the National Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty, the Center for Survivors of Torture, the International Rescue Committee and the Texas Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty.

Outside the classroom, Halperin leads groups of students, faculty and community members on human rights educational journeys three times each year to such places as Argentina, Cambodia, Rwanda, South Africa, El Salvador, Bosnia and numerous Holocaust sites across Europe.

Halperin holds degrees in Southern U.S. history and philosophy from George Washington University (B.A., 1971), Southern U.S. history from Southern Methodist University (M.A., 1974) and Southern U.S. history from Auburn University (Ph.D. 1978).