Preventing Gun Violence: Inclusion?

December 3, 2021  • Aspen Global Leadership Network

Every day it seems our phones buzz with a new report of a gun-related incident or death. In 2020, there were 600 mass shootings across the U.S., up from 461 in 2019. What is it going to take to prevent gun violence in the United States? How do we go beyond the binary of gun control versus gun rights to get to the crux of this issue and save lives?

On this episode of the Value of Leadership, hear from two leaders, Arne Duncan (Henry Crown Fellow) and Megan Ranney (Health Innovators Fellow) who are bringing unique approaches to gun violence prevention. While they both come at the issue from different angles, the ingredient they’ve both found to be effective is inclusion. 


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About Our Guests

Arne Duncan (Henry Crown Fellow) was the U.S. Secretary of Education under the Obama Administration. A native of Chicago’s South Side, he grew up in communities impacted by gun violence. After his time in public service, Duncan returned to his hometown focused on this issue, co-founding Chicago CRED – short for Creating Real Economic Destiny – an organization taking a holistic approach to reducing gun violence with a unique mix of street outreach, life coaching, and counseling, violence prevention, workforce development, advocacy, and prevention. 

Megan Ranney (Health Innovators Fellow) is an emergency room physician and co-founder of the American Foundation for Firearm Injury Reduction in Medicine – otherwise known as AFFIRM. An organization that is part of the Aspen Institute’s Health Medicine and Society Program working to prevent firearm injuries and deaths with a public health approach. 

This episode is moderated by Maribel Duran. Duran is the former Managing Director on Equity and Inclusion at the Aspen Institute. Also from Chicago, she began her career at the Chicago Public Schools and shares Duncan’s personal connection to gun violence witnessing its impact on her community and students up close. In 2009, Duran went on to join Arne in the Obama Administration as Special Assistant in the Office of the Secretary and served eight years in the U.S. Department of Education.

About The Value of Leadership

The Value of Leadership is a podcast from the Aspen Institute’s Aspen Global Leadership Network (AGLN). AGLN’s mission is to develop authentic, high-integrity leaders. People who are committed to proactively confronting societal challenges, individually and collectively, in order to create a more just, free, and equitable society. 

Subscribe to the Value of Leadership on Apple, Spotify, or wherever you listen to podcasts. And follow the AGLN across social media @AspenAGLN. 

To learn more about the network and the work of our Fellows, visit And explore more episodes of the Value of Leadership here.