Durham Premiere of “Fire of Freedom” Spotlights Historical Black Leader

Mike Wiley in performance as Abraham Galloway. A trunk lies in front of him
Wiley in performance as Abraham Galloway. Photo by Trevon Carr.

CONTACT: Sarah Rogers
(919) 660-3035

DURHAM, N.C. — Abraham Galloway was a freedom fighter. Born near Wilmington, N.C. in 1837, he escaped from slavery, became a radical abolitionist, risked his life behind Confederate lines as a Union spy, and recruited hundreds of Black soldiers to fight during the Civil War. He was known for his fiery oratory, his swagger, and his habit of visibly wearing his pistol at his hip. He was part of a delegation of Black southerners who met with Abraham Lincoln in the White House to demand suffrage and the full rights of citizenship. Following the war, he was one of the first Black men elected to the North Carolina state legislature.

Despite these accomplishments, Galloway’s story is not yet well known, even in his home state of North Carolina.

“The Fire of Freedom,” a one-man play starring actor Mike Wiley and featuring vocalist Mary Williams, promotes Galloway’s legacy by depicting the freedom fighter’s journey from ex-slave to the one of the most compelling political leaders of his time.

Wiley will perform “The Fire of Freedom” at the Carolina Theatre at 7 p.m. on Monday, April 11, the play’s Durham premiere. This performance is free and open to the public, but tickets are required. They are available online via registration at TheFireofFreedom.eventbrite.com.

“Galloway’s presence in the story of America should come as no surprise,” said Mike Wiley. “The resilience of enslaved Black people is documented in detail in the pages, songs, and stories of our nation’s history—for those who are looking, for those who are listening. The surprise that a man such as Galloway could exist arises more often from those who are not paying attention.”

An MFA graduate of the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill and winner of its Distinguished Alumni award, Wiley is an acclaimed actor, playwright, documentarian, and director. He plays dozens of characters in his one-man shows, often based on key events and figures in African American history.

“The Fire of Freedom” is inspired by a biography of Galloway by North Carolina historian David Cecelski. Playwright Howard Craft wrote the theatrical adaptation. Cecelski and Craft will join Wiley onstage after the one-hour play for an audience talkback.

This performance is sponsored by the Kenan Institute for Ethics at Duke University, where Wiley recently began a three-year appointment as Artist in Residence. He will co-direct a project called “America’s Hallowed Ground,” which tells the stories of historical sites through community-engaged art.

Call for Volunteers: Hostile Terrain 94

Toe-tags with information about deceased persons
This close-up of the Hostile Terrain 94 installation shows the toe-tags that mark the locations where individuals’ bodies were found.

The Kenan Institute for Ethics invites volunteers from the Duke and Durham community to participate in an art installation project the memorializes the 3200 people who died attempting to cross the US-Mexico border between the mid-1990s and 2019.

This installation, Hostile Terrain 94, is conceptualized by the Undocumented Migration Project. It will be simultaneously installed at more than a hundred institutions across the United States and globe.

In small groups of 15 people, volunteers will fill out toe-tags for the individual victims. Once 1600 toe-tags are filled out, groups of five people will then install the toe-tags on a temporary map on the wall of the exhibition space, making visible the human cost of the United States’ “prevention through deterrence” policy.

A number of 45-minute and 60-minute volunteer slots are open from March 16 to April 20. Jose Ortega-Estrada, Stephen & Bear Postgraduate Fellow at the Kenan Institute for Ethics, will lead these volunteer sessions.

“My hope is that this project will help individuals emotionally connect with the information on the tags, memorialize and stand in solidarity with these lost lives, and spark conversations of the root causes behind migration,” said Ortega-Estrada.

To sign up for a volunteer slot, please visit this page.

Call for Applications: Re-Imagining Tech

Applications are now open for the 2022 Re-Imagining Tech Fellowship, sponsored by Kenan Institute for Ethics, Trinity College, and Pratt School of Engineering. This fellowship offers 15 students pursuing or intending to pursue majors in engineering and computer science at Duke University an interactive summer program exploring the intersection of ethics and technology. This program is part of the Purpose Project.

Fellows will receive a $1,000 stipend; meet weekly on Wednesday evenings in June/July for program events featuring speakers, discussions, hands-on activities and community building; and participate in a 1:1 mentorship program.

Deadline: March 25, 2022

Program dates: June 7, 2022–July 28, 2022

Eligibility: Rising sophomores, rising juniors, and rising seniors pursuing majors in engineering or computer sciences. (Graduating seniors are not eligible to apply.)

In order to complete the application, you will need to answer 6 personal information questions, provide the name and contact information of a faculty reference, upload a copy of your curriculum vitae/resume, as well as answer the following three prompts in 300 words or fewer:

  • Please describe why you would like to participate in the Re-Imagining Technology Fellowship Program.
  • Please describe a substantial societal challenge we are currently facing that requires an ethical approach to a technological problem or a new development in technology.
  • Who do you believe has an obligation or responsibility to address this technological challenge? Why?

If you have any questions about the application, please email j.d. wagner (jordan.wagner@duke.edu).

Apply here

2021-2022 Ethical Tech Case Competition


1st Place: Joey Gasperi, Katherine Humphreys, Sai Raghava Keshava Anirudh Manchiraju, Lara Gemar

2nd Place: Timothy Gunawan, N Wang, Zoe Spicer

3rd Place: Quan Nguyen, Joey Scarpa, Henry Burns


Organized by the student-run Ethical Tech and supported by Technically Right at the Kenan Institute for Ethics, this annual competition gives Duke undergraduate and graduate students an opportunity to tackle a practical case challenge centered around technology and ethics in a multidisciplinary way. Problems involve the issues of ethics, legality, privacy, business, and technical feasibility to give competitors a wide view of decision making.

Competitors will be assigned to or register as teams of 3-4 members. It is recommended that teams consist of members with varying backgrounds in engineering, business, policy, law, philosophy, computer science, economics, psychology, design, etc. Teams will be given the problem statement and case file one week before the submission date, during which time they are free to consult any sources, including professors, alumni, and working professionals.


1st Place Team: $1,250
2nd Place Team: $750
3rd Place Team: $500

Winning teams will have an opportunity to virtually meet with the competition judges who are experts from both the private and public sector. Winning submissions will be featured on the Kenan Institute and Ethical Tech websites.


Teams of 3-4 Duke undergraduate or graduate students will submit a creative solution to the case study provided in the competition packet. This year, students will be asked to consider the ethical, business, and policy implications of a company pursuing the development of facial recognition technology.


Data Brokerage Systems

Data brokers (aka information brokers, data providers, and data suppliers) are companies that collect data themselves or buy it from other companies (like a credit card company), crawl the internet for useful information about users –legally or otherwise – and aggregate that information with data from other sources.


Registration Deadline: March 18, 2022 @ 12 PM EST  March 21, 2022 @ 12PM EST
Teams Released: March 21, 2022
Prompt Released: March 21, 2022
Submission Deadline: March 28, 2022
Awards Announced: April 3, 2022 (time TBD)
Contact: riya.mohan@duke.edu

Submission Guidelines

The submission includes two parts: a core deliverable regarding the team’s breakdown of the topic and a 10-minute presentation of information from the core deliverable.



Michael Schoenfeld

Michael Schoenfeld

Michael J. Schoenfeld is Duke University’s vice president for public affairs and government relations and chief communications officer.  He has responsibility for communications and advocacy for Duke University and its affiliated entities, including Duke Health, leads the university’s Washington, DC, center, and serves as Duke’s chief spokesperson. He is also a visiting professor of the practice at the Sanford School of Public Policy, where he teaches a course on media and politics.

As the university’s chief external affairs officer, Schoenfeld directs Duke’s local, regional, national and global communications, leads federal, state and local advocacy efforts, counsels the president and trustees, represents the university to a wide range of constituencies, and oversees crisis and issues management. Schoenfeld is also co-founder and chairman of Futurity (www.futurity.org), a multimedia consortium of more than 60 leading research universities from the U.S., Canada, the U.K. and Australia.

Schoenfeld previously served as vice chancellor for public affairs at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, TN, from 1997-2008. Earlier, he was senior vice president for policy and public affairs at the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB) in Washington, D.C. He also held reporting and leadership positions at the Voice of America, including news and sports anchor, Congressional liaison officer, and executive assistant to the director, and served as the first director of program development at Worldnet, the U.S. Information Agency’s global satellite television network.

Schoenfeld is chair of The Seminar and a member of the Page Society, the National Press Club, the Public Diplomacy Council and the Association of American Universities Public Affairs Committee. He is currently chair of the Triangle Community Foundation board of directors and the Regional Transportation Alliance, is vice chair of WUNC-North Carolina Public Radio board of directors, and serves on the board of PBS-NC, PineCone: The Piedmont Council for Traditional Music, Hirondelle USA, and the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences (Midsouth). A 1984 Duke graduate, Schoenfeld received a master’s degree in public policy from Stony Brook University in 1986. He and his wife Elizabeth, a writer and editor, live in Durham

Dean Brenner

Dean Brenner

Dean Brenner is a leading expert on the allocation of spectrum for wireless technologies and on wireless public policy issues in the United States and around the world. In January 2022, the Chairwoman of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) appointed him to be Chairman of the FCC’s Technological Advisory Council to lead a new initiative to advise the FCC on 6G, as well as leading ongoing work on spectrum sharing, emerging technologies, and machine learning/artificial intelligence.

Mr. Brenner has testified five times before US House of Representatives and Senate committee hearings on spectrum and wireless policy issues, including 4G/5G/6G and Wi-Fi, the digital divide, cybersecurity, and infrastructure policy. He has spoken at spectrum policy conferences in the US, China, South Korea, Belgium, Great Britain, Hong Kong, Spain, Israel, and Canada.

Mr. Brenner was formerly Senior Vice President, Spectrum Strategy & Technology Policy for Qualcomm. He directed Qualcomm’s global spectrum strategy and tech policy initiatives and represented Qualcomm before the FCC and other US and Canadian agencies on spectrum and tech policy. For 18 years, he successfully led Qualcomm’s efforts to win regulatory approval for new wireless technologies, including the world’s first deployments of 4G in unlicensed spectrum; the world’s first deployments of supplemental downlink for faster downloads; the world’s first mobile video network on 700 MHz spectrum; the first deployment in the US of cellular vehicle- to-everything (C-V2X) technology; and, the allocation of numerous spectrum bands in many countries for 3G, 4G, 5G, Wi-Fi, and other wireless technologies.

Mr. Brenner has unique expertise in spectrum auctions. He led Qualcomm’s winning bidding team in auctions in India (2.3 GHz band), the US (Lower 700 MHz band), and the United Kingdom (L Band). He headed the regulatory team which obtained the approvals to sell Qualcomm’s spectrum licenses in all three countries, the $1.9 billion sale of Lower 700 MHz spectrum from Qualcomm to AT&T in 2011.

Mr. Brenner holds one patent on spectrum sharing. He was the co-chair of the US Policy Task Force of the 5G Automotive Association, an industry group working on connected car policy, and he was a member of many wireless industry groups.

Mr. Brenner joined Qualcomm in November 2003, after working at a large Washington DC law firm and founding his own law firm. He received his J.D., cum laude, from Georgetown University in 1985 and his A.B., magna cum laude, with distinction in public policy studies, from Duke University in 1982.

Mr. Brenner is a member of the National Board of Directors of the Alzheimer’s Association, and the Board of Directors of the Alzheimer’s Association’s local National Capital Area Region Chapter. He has testified seven times before the Committee on Health of the DC Council on Alzheimer’s-related legislation, and he has advocated many times before federal policymakers on Alzheimer’s-related federal policy issues.

Lee Tiedrich

Lee Tiedrich

Lee Tiedrich is a Distinguished Faculty Fellow in Ethical Technology with the Duke Initiative for Science & Society. Ms. Tiedrich holds a dual appointment with Duke Law School.

As a Duke alumna in electrical engineering and with over 30 years of legal experience as a partner at the global law firm Covington & Burling LLP, Lee has a long career bridging technology, law and policy. At Covington, she served as co-chair of the firm’s global and multi-disciplinary Artificial Intelligence Initiative and counseled organizations on a broad range of data and technology matters, including policy, governance, intellectual property, regulatory, transactional and digital transformation matters. She has written and spoken extensively on AI, data and emerging technology including to the Council on Foreign Relations, the Singapore Embassy (with the Ambassador), the Federal Judicial Conference, the National Judicial College, the Athens AI and the Rule of Law Roundtable, the Aspen Institute, the Society of Corporate Secretaries and Governance Professionals, Stanford University, New York University, and other leading institutions.

Lee serves on the Board of Visitors of Duke University’s Pratt School of Engineering and the Dean’s Council for Penn Law Women. She is an adjunct professor at the University of Pennsylvania Law School. She served on the Biden-Harris Campaign Policy Committee and on the Board of the UC Hastings College of the Law Worklife Law Center. She is admitted to practice before the United States Patent and Trademark Office.

Lee is a champion for diversity, equity and inclusion. She was appointed the founding Chair of Covington’s Women’s Forum in 2003 and later served as Co-Chair of the firm-wide Diversity Committee. She is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania Law School and the Duke University, School of Engineering. She is also a proud Duke parent.

Chenny Zhang

Chenny Zhang

Chenny Zhang is an investor at In-Q-Tel, the strategic investment firm for U.S. national security agencies, managing a portfolio of startups. Prior to In-Q-Tel, Chenny served as the China portfolio lead at the Pentagon’s Defense Innovation Board (DIB), where she supported the AI ethics principles project, 5G report, and other initiatives. Before the DIB, Chenny was cofounder of a software startup in Beijing, overseeing product development and technical support. Prior to that, Chenny was a program manager at Cisco Systems. Chenny received an MA from Johns Hopkins, and a BA from Boston College.

Adam Newman

Adam Newman

Adam Newman is founder and CEO of Pyrl.io (pronounced /’pearl’/), the world’s first purchase privacy platform. Pyrl’s mission is to give consumers both the privacy and usage of their most valuable information, returning trust to consumer relationships.

The idea behind Pyrl was sparked when Adam lost his father to cancer, and began researching why it is that consumers have no way to see the item-level product purchases they have made that could affect a family’s health over time. Realizing the heart of the issue is basic data privacy and access rights, he is now developing the world’s first purchase privacy platform. He believes, “Like a pearl, our data is precious and valuable. It should be protected in a shell that only we can decide to open to others.”

Newman recognized that consumers’ most valuable information is data about how they spend their money, because the things consumers purchase paint an intimate portrait of who they are. While valuable to businesses seeking to earn customers, this same purchase data is invaluable to consumers’ own wallets, health and privacy – yet inaccessible to them. He created Pyrl to change that and put consumers in the driver’s seat. By serving as a privacy agent, Pyrl stops the sale and sharing of users’ information, instead allowing people to utilize their own purchase data and interact with companies that earn trust.

Adam has always been passionate about tackling issues central to the lives of all Americans. Prior to Pyrl, he helped launch and run Common Securitization Solutions (CSS), serving as its founding head executive and then COO. CSS is a joint venture across the Federal Housing Finance Agency, Fannie Mae, and Freddie Mac that helped to standardize U.S. housing finance after the last financial crisis, and which now returns about $500M annually back to taxpayers.

Adam’s career also included a stint overseeing platform re-engineering at Arbitron, a public consumer data research company acquired by Neilsen, and he was previously a technology entrepreneur in NYC.

Adam resides in Maryland with his wife and four children. When not working on Pyrl, he helps his wife grow her early childhood education company, serves as a startup mentor with the NYC Fintech Innovation Lab, and enjoys hiking the great outdoors with his kids and their overly energetic black lab rescue pup.

Justin Sherman

Justin Sherman

Justin Sherman was a Cybersecurity Policy Fellow at New America, where his research focused on global internet governance, data governance, digital authoritarianism, 5G security, and the role of artificial intelligence in strategic competition, and he worked on New America’s Data & Great Power Competition project.

He is a Fellow at the Duke Center on Law & Technology at Duke University’s School of Law, and a senior at Duke University double-majoring in computer science and political science. He is also an Artificial Intelligence Associate at Technology for Global Security.

At Duke, he co-founded and runs nonpartisan student-faculty initiative Ethical Tech; co-founded and runs the student cyber program; co-wrote the university’s “Intro to Cyber Policy” course; and co-wrote and co-taught its “Cyber and Global Security” seminar. He researches global technology issues at Duke’s Sanford School of Public Policy, including artificial intelligence in public education, the ethics of international technology transfers, and smart city data policies in the U.S. and China.

Previously, he worked on issues of cyber and national security at the NSA’s Laboratory for Analytic Sciences. Prior to that, he researched technical cybersecurity and data privacy issues at Duke’s Computer Science Department. He has held fellowships with Interact and the Duke University Program in American Grand Strategy.

His writing on technology, ethics, public policy, and international security has been published by a variety of popular and academic outlets, including The Washington PostThe AtlanticForeign PolicyWIREDLawfareSlateThe DiplomatBulletin of the Atomic ScientistsJournal of Cyber Policy, and the Council on Foreign Relations. He has contributed chapters to multiple books and appeared on BBC World Service, Public Radio International, and Australian Broadcasting Corporation, among others. Follow him on Twitter @jshermcyber.


Mike Wiley to join Kenan Institute for Ethics as Artist in Residence; Will Co-Direct America’s Hallowed Ground

North Carolina-based playwright and actor Mike Wiley will join the Kenan Institute for Ethics as Artist in Residence for a three-year appointment effective March 1, 2022.

Mike Wiley
Photo credit: Chris Charles.

A graduate of the University of North Carolina’s M.F.A. program in acting and 2017 winner of its Distinguished Alumni Award, Mike Wiley writes, directs, and performs dramas, many of them based on key events and figures in African American history. He embodies dozens of characters in his one-man shows, tours throughout North Carolina and the United States, and leads communities and schools in post-performance discussions about the issues raised in the plays. His catalog as playwright includes a growing number of ensemble cast works as well. He has taught at Duke and UNC as the Lehman Brady Joint Visiting Professor of Documentary Studies and American Studies in 2010 and 2014.

At the Kenan Institute for Ethics, Wiley will co-direct “America’s Hallowed Ground” with Charlie Thompson, Professor of the Practice of Cultural Anthropology and Documentary Studies and Kenan Senior Fellow. Beginning as a Bass Connections project, and conceived in the spirit of Lincoln’s Gettysburg address, this project seeks to honor sites of past struggles, conflicts, and sacrifices that are significant to American history, particularly its history of racial inequality. Many of these sites and their historical connection are not widely known today.

Combining research and engagement with local communities, America’s Hallowed Ground will tell the stories of these sites through the arts, making these histories accessible to a broader public and elevating them to the local, regional, and national recognition they warrant. Wiley and Thompson have already begun working on the first site: Wilmington, N.C., where white supremacists staged a violent coup in 1898 to suppress the growing political power of African Americans.

Wiley is also bringing his practice of engaging communities through the arts to Duke classrooms. With Charlie Thompson, he is currently co-teaching a Cultural Anthropology course that approaches Wilmington 1898 through ethnography and showcases how artistic expression can make research both accessible and memorable to broader populations. Students will travel to Wilmington in April, visiting sites with Thompson and Wiley, doing anthropological fieldwork, and eventually completing public history-oriented projects of their own.

“It’s really Mike’s and my expertise meshing together, in this course,” said Thompson. “We are learning how these different fields can inform one another, and become richer through cross fertilization, and I think the students really get that. They want their work to be relevant, and to reach beyond Duke.”

America’s Hallowed Ground will continue its work in Wilmington this year. The co-directors and their collaborators, many professional artists, will work with community stakeholders to produce art on local sites through podcasts, visual art, choreography, and other modes of digital storytelling. Eventually, they hope to expand the project to other sites, both in North Carolina and nationally.

Wiley’s experience as an artist and educator is integral to the process.

“Ethics happens by participation,” said David Toole, Interim Director of the Kenan Institute for Ethics. “Mike’s a great example of that. His unique abilities as an artist and performer show us the connections between what we do in the classroom and what it means for us to live well in the world.”

“Few creative talents have Mike Wiley’s range of artistic expression,” noted Vice Provost for Interdisciplinary Studies Edward Balleisen, “nor his extraordinary knack for using drama to compel engagement with the lived realities of American history. At once playwright, actor, director, and documentarian, Wiley will challenge Duke students and Durham residents to probe the moral implications of America’s professed ideals, and American society’s imperfect embrace of those aspirations.”

To mark Wiley’s appointment, the Kenan Institute for Ethics is sponsoring a performance of “The Fire of Freedom” this spring. Based on a book by historian David Cecelski and adapted by playwright Howard Craft, this one-man show by Wiley focuses on Wilmington native Abraham Galloway, who escaped from slavery and organized hundreds of Black soldiers to fight against the Confederacy during the Civil War.

The performance will take place at the Carolina Theatre in downtown Durham at 7 p.m. on Monday, April 11. Admission is free, but please register for tickets here. After the play, there will be a talkback with Wiley, Cecelski, and Craft.

New book “Neuroscience and Philosophy” examines human mind through blended disciplines

Headshots of Walter Sinnott-Armstrong and Felipe De Brigard

A recent publication builds on years-long collaborations between philosophers and neuroscientists, whose research seeks to answer questions about the human mind and how it works.

Kenan Senior Faculty Fellows Felipe De Brigard and Walter Sinnott-Armstrong are the editors of Neuroscience and Philosophy (MIT Press, 2022). The chapters explore a wide range of interdisciplinary questions, from “How do we decide how to act towards each other?” to “How do we remember and categorize what we experience?” Every chapter in the volume was written by a team with at least one philosopher and one neuroscientist.

These teams came together to study each others’ fields during the Summer Seminars in Neuroscience and Philosophy (SNNAP), which De Brigard and Sinnott-Armstrong organized and ran from 2016-2018. Many of them later collaborated on research projects, and returned in 2019 to workshop the resultant chapters in the book.

According to De Brigard and Sinnott-Armstrong, the book’s authors are “all future leaders in neuroscience and philosophy who will shape interactions between these disciplines for years to come. If you want to know how this interdisciplinary field will develop, they will show and tell you.”

The book was released in February 2022 and is now available for purchase.

The Summer Seminars will reconvene in 2022, and hold a closing conference on June 3–June 4. More information is forthcoming on the SSNAP website.

These seminars were funded by the John Templeton Foundation, with additional support from the Duke Institute for Brain Sciences and the Kenan Institute for Ethics.