Hope College will present the 5th annual "Women of Color Celebration" on Wednesday, March 27, at 5 p.m. in the Maas Center auditorium.

Keynote speaker will be Dr. Patricia E. Newby, superintendent of the Grand Rapids Public Schools, who will address the event's theme, "When I Look Back... There Was a Plan for My Life." The event will also feature testimonials from Dr. Mansoon Han, assistant professor of music, and Hope junior Katlego Setshogoe of Jahannesburg, South Africa.

Tickets are $5 for the general public, $3 for Hope students not on the college's meal plan, and $1 for students on the meal plan, and must be purchased in advance. They will be available through Friday, March 15, at the college's Student Union Desk, and Monday-Friday, March 18-22, at Hope's Student Development Office, both located on the main floor of the DeWitt Center.

Limited seating will also be available at no cost for those who do not wish to partake in the meal.

Newby was appointed superintendent of the Grand Rapids Public Schools in July of 1997, and will be retiring from the office on June 30. Grand Rapids is the third- largest school system in Michigan, with an enrollment of approximately 26,000 students and nearly 4,000 employees.

Over the past 41 years, she has served in school systems with diverse populations including urban, suburban and rural communities. Her career has included positions as a teacher, curriculum specialist, elementary assistant principal, middle school principal, director of special education and pupil services, supervisor of elementary instruction and assistant superintendent of schools.

Born in Los Angeles, Calif., Newby grew up in Little Rock, Ark. In the 1950s, she was one of a handful of African-American students attempting to enroll in Little Rock's public school system. She was pictured in the Feb. 6, 1956, issue of "Life" magazine.

She holds a bachelor's degree from California State University-Los Angeles, a master's from California State University-Long Beach and a doctorate in education from the University of Maryland-College Park.

The college's Student Union Desk is open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. through Thursday, March 14, and until 5 p.m. on Friday, March 15. The Student Development Office is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays.

The DeWitt Center is located on Columbia Avenue at 12th Street. The Maas Center is located on Columbia Avenue at 11th Street.