Skip to main content
  • Home
  • Past Speakers

Past Speakers

Spring 2017

"West Virginia and the Industries of the Future" 

Alec Ross
New York Times best-selling author & former Senior Advisor for Innovation at the U.S. Department of State

"Fake News"
Panel Discussion 

Emily Corio -Moderator
Teaching Assistant Professor, WVU

Elizabeth Cohen
Assistant Professor of Communications Studies, WVU

Zach Graves
Technology Policy Program Director, R Street Institute

Paige Lavender
Senior Politics Editor, The Huffington Post

David Mikkelson

Errin Haines Whack
Urban Affairs Reporter, The Associated Press

Fall 2016

"American Injustice: Mercy, Humanity and Making a Difference" 

Bryan Stevenson
Campus Read Author

"The Dawn of Gravitational-Wave Astronomy" 

Sean McWilliams, PhD 
Assistant Professor, West Virginia University

"Seafood from Slaves: From Investigation to Pulitzer Prize" 
Panel Discussion

Emily Corio -Moderator
Teaching Assistant Professor
West Virginia University

Margie Mason
Associated Press 

Robin McDowell
Associated Press 

Martha Mendoza
Associated Press 

Esther Htusan
Associated Press

"The Dance of Feminism and the Human Rights Globally over the Past 25 Years" 

Charlotte Bunch
Founding Director and Senior Scholar at the Center for Women’s Global Leadership
Rutgers University

Spring 2016

"Fractured Spaces: Deconstructing Photo Narratives from Afghanistan, Iraq and Pakistan" 

Lois Raimondo
The Shott Chair of Journalism at the WVU Reed College of Media

"America's Opiate Epidemic" 

Sam Quinones
In conversation with John Temple
Author of American Pain and Associate Professor
Reed College of Media, West Virginia University

Fall 2015

"Beyond the Hype and Headlines: the 2016 Elections Matter More than you Think" 
Panel Discussion

Micheal Tomasky -Moderator
Special Correspondent for The Daily Beast and Editor of Democracy: A Journal of Ideas
West Virginia University, Class of 1982

Jamelle Bouie
Chief Political Correspondent

Ezra Klein

Paige Lavender
Senior Politics Editor
Huffington Post
West Virginia University, Class of 2011

Mercedes Schlapp
Co-founder of Cove Strategies, TV political commentator
and former White House spokesperson under President George W. Bush

"Healthy Brain Aging: What you can do now" 

Charles F. Reynolds II, MD
UPMC Endowed Professor in Geriatric Psychiatry
Director, Advanced Center for Interventions and Services Research in Late-Life Depression Prevention and Hartford Center of Excellence in Geriatric Psychiatry 
Director, Aging Institute of UPMC Senior Services and the University of Pittsburgh

"The Culture Wars of the '80s and '90s" 

Michael Bérubé  
Edwin Erle Sparks Professor of Literature and Director of the Institute for the Arts and Humanities
Pennsylvania State University 

"America's New Manufacturing" 

Eric A. Spiegel
President and CEO
Siemens Corporation, USA

"Diversity is a Way of Life" 

Justin Brown
Diversity Awareness Program

"From World War I to World War Z" 

Max Brooks

Spring 2015

Marcel Drimer
Holocaust Survivor 

Barbara Kellerman

James McGregor Burns Lecturer in Leadership
Center for Public Leadership

"Tom's River -A Story of Science and Salvation" 

Dan Fagin
Environmental Journalist

Fall 2014

November 2014

Stuart Yudofsky, MD
Chairman of the department of psychiatry
Baylor College of Medicine and Houston Methodist Hospital

"Get the Picture: A Personal History of Photojournalism" 

John G. Morris
Photo Editor
Life Magazine 

September 2014

Chuck D
Music Artist

Spring 2014

"An Evening with Robert Edsel" 

Robert Edsel

"The BRAIN Initiative: Computers, Connectomes and the Emergence of Technology" 

Paul Holcomb
Neuroscience PhD Student
Dr. George Spirou lab at West Virginia University 

"Free Angela and All Political Prisoners" 

Angela Davis
Distinguished Professor Emerita
University of California, Santa Cruz

Fall 2013

"Aspiring to Greatness: West Virginia University since WWII" 

Ronald Lewis
West Virginia University Professor Emeritus

"The End: Nuru's Vision for a World Without Poverty" 

Jake Harriman
Founder and CEO of Nuru International

Spring 2013


Scott W. Tinker
Director of the Bureau of Economic Geology at the University of Texas at Austin 
and the co-producer the film “Switch”

Fall 2012

"Human Rights Campaign" 

Candace Gingrich-Jones
Associate Director
Youth and Campus Outreach

"The End of Illness" 

David B. Agus, MD
Pioneering Cancer Doctor, Biomedical Researcher and
NY Times Best Selling Author

"Globalization and the Lessons of Leadership" 

Jeffrey R. Immelt
Chairman and CEO
General Electric

Spring 2012


Charles Best
Educator and Founder

"The Revolution will be Tweeted" 
Panel Discussion

Andy Carvin
Senior Strategist 
National Public Radio's Social Media Desk

Issandr El Amrani
Cairo-Based Writer, Blogger and Consultant

Jigar Mehta
Digital Entrepreneur, Video Journalist and Documentary Filmmaker of 18 Days in Egypy

Nasser Weddady
Civil Rights Outreach Director
American Islamic Congress

Jillian York
Director of International Freedom of Expression, 
Electronic Frontier Foundation

"An Evening with Dr. Robert DiClarico" 

Robert DiClarico, PhD
Political Science Professor and Presidential Scholar
West Virginia University 

"How to Win a Cosmic War" 

Reza Aslan
Author and Entrepreneur

"The Dressmaker of Khair Khana" 

Gayle Tzemach Lemmon

"More Davids than Goliaths" 

Harold Ford, Jr.
Former U.S. Congressman 

Fall 2011

"A Private Conversations with Jerry West" 

Jerry West
Retired NBA Player 
WVU Alumni 

"The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer" 

Siddhartha Mukherjee, MD
Pulitzer Prize for General Nonfiction

"The Land Grant Faith and its Practice" 

C. Peter Magrath, PhD
Interim President
State University of New York at Binghamton 

Spring 2011

"Unscientific America: How Scientific Illiteracy Threatens Our Future

Sheril Kirshenbaum
Research Scientist with the Webber Energy Group

"The Front Lines of History: 20 Years of Reporting from Around the World" 

Sebastian Junger
Award Winning Journalist and Author
2011 Academy Award Nominee

Tim Hetherington
Filmmaker and Photojournalist 
2011 Academy Award Nominee

"Come Hell of High Water: Hurricane Katrina and the Color of Disaster" 

Michael Eric Dyson


John Kao
Author and Strategic Advisor 

"Einstein's Unfinished Symphony"

Duncan Lorimer
Professor of Astronomy
West Virginia University 

Maura McLaughlin 
Professor of Astronomy
West Virginia University 

Fall 2010

"An Evening with James Gunn"

James Gunn

"The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks"

Rebecca Skloot

Spring 2010

"The Questions"
Debate Team

Samantha Godbey

"Want Jobs? Invest in our Universities"

Norman R. Augustine
Chair, Rising Above the Gathering Storm Committee
National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering
and Institute of Medicine of the National Academies

"The World Without Us"

Alan Weisman

"The Peace Caravan Project"

Marla Mossman
Photographer and Artist 

"An Evening with Gary Paul Nabhan" 

Gary Paul Nabhan, PhD

"Diversity: On TV, Behind the Scenes and in our Lives"

Soledad O'Brien 
Acclaimed Special Investigations Correspondent and Host of CNN's In America Documentaries

"An Evening with Dr. Henry Louis Gates Jr."

Henry Louis Gates Jr. PhD
Alphonse Fletcher University Professor, Harvard University
Director, W. E. B. Du Bois Institute for African and African American Research

"Step Out on Nothing: An Evening with Byron Pitts"

Byron Pitts
CBS News Chief National Correspondent and Contributing Correspondent, 60 Minutes

2009 Series

"The Evolution of Mass Communication"

Walter Isaacson
Writer and Journalist

"The Search and Discovery of our Earliest Ancestors"

Meave Leakey

"Darwin, Complexity, Systems Biology and P4 Medicine" 

Leroy Hood
President and Co-founder, ISB; SVP & CSO, Providence St. Joseph Health

"Politics, Policy and Reality: What's Realing Going on in Washington"

Gwen Ifill
Moderator and Managing Editor, PBS's "Washington Week"
Co-Anchor and Managing Editor, "PBS NewsHour"

"Hip Hip's Influence on Law and Culture"

Cornel West, PhD
Professor of Philosophy and Christian Practice at Union Theological Seminary 

"Free the Poor! The Evolution of Ideas Toward Ending Poverty from the Bottom Up"

William Easterly
Professor of Economics at New York University 
Co-director of the NYU Development Research Institute