Washington, D.C. and New Orleans, LA (July 22, 2015)--When the levees broke in August 2005, New Orleans instantly became a city changed, left to recover and rebuild  from one of the worst disasters in U.S. history. A decade later, New Orleans has been revived as brightly painted houses again line neighborhood streets, students too young to know life before Katrina attend state-of-the-art charter schools and a new generation of entrepreneurs descends on the city. Despite all of this progress, there is still much to be done and many looming issues to address. To mark the tenth anniversary of Hurricane Katrina, The Atlantic will host “New Orleans: Ten Years Later” on August 24, recognizing the city’s resilience while evaluating the challenges it and other communities across the country continue to face.

Organized with the Urban Institute, the daylong program will bring together New Orleanians, policy experts, environmentalists, economists, artists and community leaders for a day of conversations about the living history and culture of New Orleans. The event will explore challenges facing the broader Gulf ecosystem, including disaster preparedness, housing, education, the environment, economic opportunity, race and resilience.

New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu will sit down with The Atlantic’s Jeffrey Goldberg. Other confirmed speakers to-date are listed below, and a full agenda will be available next month.  

  • Dean Baquet, Executive Editor, The New York Times
  • ​Terry Baquet, Director of Print, The Times-Picayune
  • Wayne Baquet, Owner, Li'l Dizzy’s
  • Walter Isaacson, President and CEO, The Aspen Institute
  • Kira Orange Jones, Executive Director, Teach for America, Greater New Orleans
  • Andre Perry, Education Advisor and Creator, The Second Line Education Blog
  • Gary Rivlin, Journalist and Author, Katrina: After the Flood
  • Judith Rodin, President, The Rockefeller Foundation
  • Zack Rosenburg, Co-Founder and CEO, St. Bernard Project
  • La June Montgomery Tabron, President and CEO, W.K. Kellogg Foundation
  • Jesmyn Ward, Author, Salvage the Bones and Men We Reaped
  • John White, Superintendent of Education, Louisiana

Conversations will be moderated by The Atlantic’s Editor-in-Chief and President James Bennet, Washington Editor-at-Large Steve Clemons, National Correspondent Jeffrey Goldberg, NPR Host and Special Correspondent Michele Norris, WWNO Director of News Eve Troeh and WWNO “Music Inside Out” Host Gwen Thompkins.

“New Orleans: Ten Years Later” leads a week of events hosted by various organizations in partnership with the city of New Orleans. The Atlantic’s event is underwritten by The Rockefeller Foundation, The W.K. Kellogg Foundation and Jones Walker.

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