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Edward R. Murrow College of Communication



The Murrow College “Power of Voice” speaker series serves as a catalyst to engage the community in discussions about diversity, equity, inclusion, race, and social justice issues. The series provides a platform to engage alumni, students, and the greater public in important, timely and relevant issues at the intersection of professional communication and social justice.

Evoking Change – The Lauren McCluskey Story

Hear from panelists who used their voices to tell the tragic story of a 21-year-old track star Lauren McCluskey who was murdered on the University of Utah campus five years ago. Join us for a candid discussion on how the power of communication can be a catalyst for positive social change and reform. Her story brought awareness to the pressing issues surrounding dating violence and stalking on university and college campuses today.


4:30 PM PST





For those seeking help for yourself or a person you care about, help is available.
National Domestic Violence Hotline 800-799-7233 or visit
Washington State Coalition Against Domestic Violence

Alternatives to Violence of the Palouse
WSU Counseling Services


MODERATOR & Co–Developer

Molly Schotzko

Scholarly Assistant Professor

Prior to her role in the college, Molly Schotzko developed award-winning and nationally recognized marketing and communication campaigns and strategies for an array of audiences in higher education. She teaches courses in advertising, consumer behavior and brand development, persuasion, and media strategies and techniques for advertising. Molly is a Washington State University alumna and a four-time letter winner in cross country and track and field. She has a passion for teaching, and communicating messages to serve the greater good.



Wendy Raney

Scholarly Assistant Professor

Wendy Raney has 25 years of experience reporting, writing and editing. She has created two courses in Murrow College, Sports Journalism and Strategic Sports Writing, and focuses her teaching on providing experiential learning opportunities for students to hone their skills in real-world situations. A Division III two-sport varsity athlete and former high school basketball coach, Raney is committed to sharing the stories of student-athletes and elevating women in sports.



Jill McCluskey

President of the Lauren McCluskey Foundation

Jill McCluskey co-founded the Lauren McCluskey Foundation with her husband, Matt, after the murder of their daughter Lauren. Jill serves as the Foundation’s president. Jill was a “track mom” to Lauren. They traveled nationally for Lauren to compete and loved spending time together on these trips. In the Foundation, Jill’s main focus is on campus safety, and she is also supportive of the Foundation’s two additional strategic objectives, amateur athletics and animal welfare, which were two of Lauren’s passions. She started the Lauren’s Promise campaign, and she is collaborating on the campus safety score initiative. She shares Lauren’s story to increase awareness of the dangers of dating violence and make positive change, so that others will not lose their daughters to violence. Jill is also a Regents professor and director of the School of Economic Sciences at Washington State University.


Nicole Noren

Director, Producer and Journalist for ESPN

Nicole Noren is a director, producer and journalist for ESPN who has produced more than 50 investigative reports and short documentaries for the network. A recipient of six Emmys, two Edward R. Murrow Awards and a Peabody, Nicole has reported extensively on gender-based violence, education and social issues. A first gen college grad, Nicole is an avid traveler, music lover, photographer and outdoor enthusiast based in Santa Barbara, California.




Jani Iwamoto

Former Utah State Senator and Attorney

Former Utah State Senator and Attorney, Jani Iwamoto was elected to the Utah State Senate in 2014. Recently retired, she served in leadership as the assistant minority whip. She previously served on the Salt Lake County Council where she became the first Asian American woman elected in the state of Utah. Jani Graduated Magna Cum Laude in mass communication from the University of Utah and received a J.D. from the UC Davis School of Law. She was a partner at a prominent California law firm. She continues her involvement in criminal and social justice issues, campus safety, and environmental issues, especially related to water quality and quantity. She passed key bills enhancing university campus safety plans, creating studies of law enforcement governance and data disaggregation on crimes, and increasing penalties for repeat perpetrators of domestic violence.


Devon Cantwell-Chavez

Ph.D. candidate at the University of Ottawa

Devon Cantwell-Chavez is a Ph.D. candidate at the University of Ottawa. Prior to this, she was a graduate student at the University of Utah. In the aftermath of Lauren McCluskey’s murder, Devon organized with other students on the University of Utah campus to form an off-campus group, UnsafeU, to hold university administration accountable for improving resources, transparency, and accountability for campus safety issues.



Join Nicole Noren, an investigative producer in ESPN’s Investigative and Enterprise Unit, for the film “Listen” a documentary about the murder of athlete Lauren McCluskey and the institutional and systemic failures that led to her death.


4:30 PM PST

This ESPN program contains graphic descriptions of intimate partner violence, sexual violence and gun violence. Viewer discretion is advised.






View Past Power of voice panels



Special thanks to BECU for sponsoring the 2023-2024 Power of Voice Speaker Series

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