The Robert Talbot Civil Rights Speaker Series

Join us for “Civil Rights and the Law: A Court Perspective”.

WHEN: Thursday November 17, 2022

TIME: 4:30 PM - Reception | 5:30 PM - Program

WHERE: Wells Conference Center, University of Maine

AFFINITY: University of Maine Alumni Association and NAACP

COST: Free

Please join us in Orono for the
2022 Robert Talbot Civil Rights Speaker Series
“Civil Rights and the Courts”

The Honorable Rick E. Lawrence
Associate Justice, Maine Supreme Judicial Court

Thursday, November 17, 2022
Wells Conference Center, University of Maine
4:30 p.m. – reception | 5:30 p.m. – program

Welcome remarks will be given by Joan Ferrini-Mundy, President of the University of Maine and University of Maine at Machias.

Following Justice Lawrence’s formal remarks, attorneys Ukeme Awakessien Jeter and Angela Okafor will join him for a conversation and Q&A regarding the program’s theme.

Visit or call 207.581.1144 to register. Admission is free.
This event is supported by a generous grant from:


Registration closes Wednesday, November 16.


About Justice Lawrence

Associate Justice Rick E. Lawrence of Portland is a graduate of Yale University and Harvard Law School. Upon earning his law degree, he joined the Portland law firm of Pierce, Atwood, Scribner, Allen, Smith & Lancaster. In 1993 he joined UNUM Life Insurance Co. as an insurance claims litigator. In 1998 he began work on insurance contract development and state regulatory approval of insurance products for UNUMProvident Life Insurance Co.  

In April 2000 Governor Angus King appointed Lawrence to a seven-year term as a judge of the Maine District Court.  He was subsequently reappointed to additional seven-year terms by Governors John Baldacci, Paul LePage, and Janet Mills.  He also served as an adjunct professor at the University of Maine Law School from 2014 to 2020.

In 2022 Governor Mills appointed Lawrence to Maine’s Supreme Judicial Court.  He was sworn in as Associate Justice on May 4, 2022. 


About Ukeme Awakessien Jeter

A 2004 UMaine graduate with a degree in mechanical engineering, Ukeme Awakessien is an intellectual property attorney and partner with the law firm Taft Stettinius & Hollister. In addition, Jeter is a community activist who earlier this year was elected to the Upper Arlington (Ohio) City Council. Her extensive volunteer work includes serving as a member of the UMaine Alumni Association’s Board of Directors.


About Angela Okafor 

Angela Okafor is an immigration attorney with Okafor Law Practice and has served for the past three years as a member of the Bangor City Council. Currently Okafor is serving as Acting Director of Outreach and Community Engagement for the State of Maine’s Permanent Commission on the Status of Racial, Indigenous and Tribal Populations.  In addition, Okafor is a small businessperson who owns an international food market and a salon, both located in Bangor.


Established in 2021 by the University of Maine Alumni Association and the Greater Bangor Area Branch NAACP, the Robert Talbot Civil Rights Speaker Series promotes dialogue and engagement to advance equality and justice. The series is named in honor of Robert “Bob” Talbot, a UMaine alumnus and the first executive director of the Maine Human Rights Commission. The 2022 Talbot Speaker Series is underwritten by a generous grant from Bangor Savings Bank.