2018–2019 Signature Lectures

Fall 2018 | Spring 2019

Fall 2018

  • Carol Berkin

    Carol Berkin

    Presidential Professor of History Emerita at Baruch College and the Graduate Center

    City University of New York


    “Born in Crisis: The Emergence in the 1790s of an American Identity”


    Constitution Day Lecture

    Sept. 17, 1:30 p.m., Chapel

    Berkin is an American historian and author specializing in the role of women in American colonial history. She has worked as a consultant on several PBS and History Channel documentaries, including “Scottsboro Boys,” which was nominated for a best documentary Academy Award in 2000.


    Sponsored by the School of Public and International Affairs and the American Founding Group

  • Sushil Prasad

    Sushil Prasad

    Professor and program director at the National Science Foundation

    Georgia State University 


    “Innovations in NSF Advanced Cyberinfrastructure Research Workforce Development and Education Programs”


    Oct. 12, 3:30 p.m., Boyd Graduate Studies Research Center, Room 328


    Prasad is a professor of computer science at Georgia State University and director of the Distributed and Mobile Systems Lab. He has carried out theoretical as well as experimental research in parallel and distributed computing, resulting in more than 140 refereed publications, several patent applications, and about $6 million in external research funds.


    Sponsored by the department of computer science.

  • Maria Taylor

    Maria Taylor

    Analyst, host and reporter, ESPN


    Terry Leadership Speaker Series


    Oct 17, 10:10 a.m., Chapel


    A former UGA basketball and volleyball player, Taylor received her bachelor’s degree in journalism in 2009 and earned a master of business administration in 2013. Taylor is in her sixth season as an analyst, host and reporter for ESPN.


    Sponsored by the Institute for Leadership Advancement

  • Andrea Wulf

    Andrea Wulf

    New York Times Bestselling Author


    “The Invention of Nature: Alexander von Humboldt’s New World”


    Gregory Distinguished History Lecture

    Oct. 18, 4 p.m., Chapel

    Wulf is an award-winning author of five acclaimed books, including the New York Times Bestselling “Founding Gardeners” and “The Invention of Nature.”


    Sponsored by the department of history

  • David Lubin

    David Lubin

    Charlotte C. Weber Professor of Art

    Wake Forest University


    “Oh Say Can You See: American Art, Propaganda, and the First World War”


    Oct. 18, 5:30 p.m., Georgia Museum of Art, M. Smith Griffith Auditorium

    Lubin has lectured at colleges, universities, medical schools and art museums throughout the United States, Europe, China and Australia. His book “Shooting Kennedy: JFK and the Culture of Images” won the Smithsonian Institution’s Charles Eldredge Prize for distinguished scholarship in American art. His latest book is “Grand Illusions: American Art and the First World War.”


    Co-sponsored by the Georgia Museum of Art and the College of Environment and Design

  • Rebecca RutsteinSamantha Joye

    Rebecca Rutstein


    Samantha Joye

    UGA Athletic Association Professor of Arts and Sciences


    “Expeditions, Experiments and the Ocean: Arts and Sciences at Sea”


    Nov. 2, 9 a.m., Georgia Center for Continuing Education, Mahler Hall

    Rutstein, the university’s Delta Visiting Chair for Global Understanding, is an artist whose work spans painting, sculpture, installation, and public art and explores abstraction inspired by science, data and maps.
    Joye’s research aims to discover, document, resolve and understand complex feedback that drive elemental cycling in coastal and open ocean environments. She led assessment efforts in the Gulf of Mexico immediately following the 2010 Deepwater Horizon blowout and is director of the Ecosystem Impacts of Oil and Gas Inputs to the Gulf research consortium.


    Sponsored by the Willson Center for Humanities and Arts

  • Sharon Deem

    Sharon Deem

    Director of the Institute for Conservation Medicine at the St. Louis Zoo


    “One Health in the Age of the Anthropocene”


    Nov. 5, 12:30 p.m., Warnell School of Forestry and Natural Resources Building 2, Room 100

    From wild forest elephants in Gabon and maned wolves in Bolivia to giant tortoises on the Galapagos Islands, Deem has built a career connecting the health of wildlife to people through One Health, an approach that recognizes that the health of people is connected to the health of animals and the environment. She is an award-winning epidemiologist, wildlife veterinarian and conservationist.
    Sponsored by the Warnell School of Forestry and Natural Resources

  • Ann E. Tenbrusel

    Ann E. Tenbrunsel

    David E. Gallo Professor of Business Ethics

    University of Notre Dame


    “Blind Spots: Why We Aren't as Ethical as We Think We Are”


    Ethics Week Lecture

    Nov. 7, 2:30 p.m., Chapel

    Tenbrusel’s research interests focus on the psychology of ethical decision making, examining why employees, leaders and students behave unethically, despite their best intentions to behave to the contrary. She is the author, co-author or co-editor of six books on this topic—including “Blind Spots” (with Max Bazerman), “Behavioral Ethics: Shaping an Emerging Field” (with David De Cremer), “Codes of Conduct: Behavioral Research into Business Ethics” (with David Messick)—and over 50 research articles and chapters. 
    Sponsored by the Office of the President, Terry College of Business and School of Law

  • Robert Paarlberg

    Robert Paarlberg

    Adjunct professor of public policy at the Harvard Kennedy School and an associate at Harvard's Weatherhead Center for International Affairs

    Harvard University


    “Foodies vs. Aggies: Compromise for a New Food System”


    D.W. Brooks Lecture

    Nov. 8, 3:30 p.m., Georgia Center for Continuing Education, Mahler Hall


    Paarlberg specializes in understanding the space where public policy intersects with food security and human health. He has recently been a member of the Board of Agriculture and Natural Resources at the National Research Council and a consultant to the National Intelligence Council, USAID, the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa, IFPRI, the World Bank, and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. 
    Sponsored by the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences

  • Marina Walker Guevara

    Marina Walker Guevara

    Deputy director of the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists


    “Trust, Technology and Teamwork Can Reveal a Global Truth”


    McGill Lecture

    Nov. 8, 4 p.m., Journalism Building, Studio 100

    Walker Guevara is deputy director of the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, a network of reporters in 80 countries who collaborate on stories of global concern. She has managed the two largest collaborations of reporters in journalism’s history: the Panama Papers and the Paradise Papers, which involved hundreds of journalists and media partners using technology to unravel stories of public interest from terabytes of leaked financial data. Her work has won and shared more than 40 national and international awards, including the Pulitzer Prize for Explanatory Reporting.
    Sponsored by the Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication

  • Nirav Merchant

    Nirav Merchant

    Director of the University of Arizona Data Science Institute


    “Learning (for All of Us) in the Machine Learning Era”


    Georgia Informatics Institutes Lecture


    Nov. 30, 1 p.m., Georgia Center for Continuing Education, Masters Hall

    Merchant is co-principal investigator for the National Science Foundation’s CyVerse, a national scale cyberinfrastructure for life sciences headquartered at the University of Arizona. Over the last two decades, his research has been directed toward developing scalable platforms for supporting open science and open innovation, with an emphasis on improving research productivity for geographically distributed interdisciplinary teams. 


    Sponsored by the Georgia Informatics Institutes for Research and Education and the Institute of Bioinformatics

Spring 2019

  • W. Craig Fugate

    W. Craig Fugate

    Former Administrator, Federal Emergency Management Agency

    Chief Emergency Management Officer, One Concern

    “Seven Deadly Sins of Emergency Management”

    College of Engineering Distinguished Lecture

    Jan. 25, 12:20 p.m., Coverdell Center, Room 175

    Fugate served as President Barack Obama’s FEMA administrator and previously served as emergency management director in Florida. Fugate led FEMA through multiple record-breaking disaster years and oversaw the federal government’s response to major events such as the tornado in Joplin, Mo., Hurricane Sandy and Hurricane Matthew.

    Sponsored by the College of Engineering and the Institute for Resilient Infrastructure Systems.

  • Freda Scott Giles

    Freda Scott Giles

    Associate Professor Emerita of Theatre and Film Studies and African-American Studies, University of Georgia

    “W.E.B. Du Bois: Dramatist”

    Founders Day Lecture

    Jan. 28, 1:30 p.m., Chapel

    Giles is a specialist in African-American theatre, directing and acting who recently retired from UGA. She taught theatre courses, directed a number of University Theatre productions and served as associate director for the Institute for African American Studies and as an affiliate faculty member of the African Studies Institute and the Institute for Women’s Studies.

    Sponsored by the Office of the President, UGA Alumni Association and Emeriti Scholars.

  • Monica Kaufman Pearson

    Monica Kaufman Pearson

    Former journalist and broadcaster

    Holmes-Hunter Lecture

    Feb. 7, 2 p.m., Chapel

    After almost 40 years as a news anchor for WSB-TV, Pearson retired in 2012 and now hosts a weekly radio show on KISS 104.1 FM. During her retirement, she earned a master’s degree in journalism and mass communication magna cum laude from the University of Georgia and has since lectured at UGA, along with other colleges across the state.

    Sponsored by the Office of the President.

  • Alana Shepherd

    Alana Shepherd

    Co-founder of Shepherd Center

    Mason Public Leadership Lecture

    Feb. 19, 2 p.m., Chapel


    Shepherd, with her husband Harold and son James, founded Shepherd Center after James sustained a paralyzing spinal cord injury in 1973. Her advocacy for accessibility resulted in the addition of lifts to the MARTA bus system and in making Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport one of the country’s most accessible. 

    Sponsored by a grant from Keith Mason. Part of the Terry Leadership Speaker Series presented by the Institute for Leadership Advancement. 

  • Stephanie McCurry

    Stephanie McCurry

    R. Gordon Hoxie Professor of American History in Honor of Dwight D. Eisenhower, Columbia University

    “Reconstructing: A Georgia Woman's Life Amidst the Ruins”

    Ferdinand Phinizy Lecture and Willson Center Global Georgia Initiative

    Feb. 22, 5:30 p.m., Seney-Stovall Chapel


    McCurry specializes in the 19th century United States, the American South, the American Civil War and the history of women and gender. Current interests include the history of the United States in the immediate post-Civil War moment, the history of postwar societies and processes of reconstruction in the 19th and 20th centuries, and the matter of marriage, politics and the state in the modern period.

    Sponsored by the department of history and the Willson Center for Humanities and Arts.

  • Roger Hunter

    Roger Hunter

    Program Manager, NASA Small Spacecraft Technology Program 

    “NASA’s Kepler Mission and Small Spacecraft Technologies: Today and Beyond”

    Charter Lecture

    March 20, 2:30 p.m., Chapel


    On the day of his graduation from UGA with a degree in mathematics in 1978, Hunter was commissioned as an officer in the Air Force, where he served for 22 years. He joined NASA in 2008 and served as project manager for NASA's Kepler Mission, the first mission capable of finding potentially habitable planets in the Milky Way Galaxy. He currently serves as associate director of the NASA Ames Research Center.

    Sponsored by the Office of the Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost.

  • Robert Michael Franklin Jr.

    Robert Michael Franklin Jr.

    James T. and Berta R. Laney Professor in Moral Leadership, Emory University

    “The Vocation of Moral Leadership”

    Donald L. Hollowell Lecture

    March 21, 3 p.m., Georgia Center for Continuing Education, Mahler Hall


    Franklin served as president of Morehouse College from 2007 to 2012. An ordained minister and an insightful speaker, he provides commentary for the National Public Radio program “All Things Considered” and the Atlanta Interfaith Broadcasting Television. In addition to authoring three books, he has served as program officer in Human Rights and Social Justice at the Ford Foundation.

    Sponsored by School of Social Work; the Center for Social Justice, Human and Civil Rights; and the Thomas M. Parham Professorship.

  • Gene Dodaro

    Gene L. Dodaro

    Comptroller General of the United States

    “The Many Dimensions of Accountability: GAO’s Mission for Congress and the Nation”

    Getzen Lecture on Government Accountability

    March 25, 2 p.m., Chapel


    Dodaro became the eighth comptroller general of the United States and head of the U.S. Government Accountability Office in 2010, when he was confirmed by the U.S. Senate. Dodaro has testified before Congress dozens of times on important national issues, including the nation's long-term fiscal outlook and efforts to reduce and eliminate overlap and duplication across the federal government. In addition, Dodaro has led efforts to fulfill GAO's new audit responsibilities under the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act.

    Sponsored by the department of public administration and policy and the School of Public and International Affairs.

  • Christopher Emdin

    Christopher Emdin

    Associate Professor, Director of the Science Education Program and Associate Director of the Institute for Urban and Minority Education, Columbia University

    “Teaching and Learning from the Students’ Standpoint”

    Mary Frances Early Lecture

    March 26, 3 p.m., Georgia Center for Continuing Education, Mahler Hall


    Emdin is a social critic, public intellectual and science advocate whose commentary on issues of race, culture, inequality and education have appeared in dozens of influential periodicals, including the New York Times, Wall Street Journal and Washington Post.

    Sponsored by the Graduate School, the Office of Institutional Diversity and the Graduate and Professional Scholars.

  • John Turner

    John M. Turner

    President and CEO, Regions Financial Corporation

    Terry Leadership Speaker Series

    March 27, 10:10 a.m., Chapel


    Turner, a 1989 graduate of the Terry College of Business, joined Regions in 2011 as president of the South region, leading banking operations in Alabama, Mississippi, south Louisiana and the Florida panhandle. In December 2017, he was named president, and in July 2018 became the chief executive officer and was appointed to Regions’ board of directors.

    Sponsored by the Institute for Leadership Advancement in the Terry College of Business.

  • Eric Deggans

    Eric Deggans

    Television critic, National Public Radio

    “Decoding Media’s Coverage of Race, Gender and Differences”

    Peabody-Smithgall Lecture

    April 3, 4 p.m., Chapel


    Deggans is one of the most prominent media critics working today. As NPR's first full-time television critic, his stories are regularly broadcast on "Morning Edition" and "All Things Considered.” In addition to his work with NPR, Deggans also contributes to various national media outlets. Deggans chairs the Peabody Board of Jurors, which he has served on since 2013.  

    Sponsored by the Peabody Awards.

  • David Strauss

    David A. Strauss

    Gerald Ratner Distinguished Service Professor of Law and Faculty Director of the Jenner & Block Supreme Court and Appellate Clinic, University of Chicago

    “Are Supreme Court Decisions the Law of the Land?”

    John A. Sibley Endowed Lecture

    April 12, 12 p.m., Hirsch Hall, Hatton Lovejoy Courtroom


    Strauss is a highly regarded constitutional law scholar whose many publications include The Living Constitution (Oxford University Press, 2010). A Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and a member of the board of directors of the American Constitution Society, Strauss previously served as attorney-adviser in the U.S. Department of Justice Office of Legal Counsel, assistant to the U.S. Solicitor General, and special counsel to the U.S. Senate Committee on the Judiciary.

    Sponsored by the School of Law.

  • Susan Herbst

    Susan Herbst

    President, University of Connecticut

    “Division, Incivility and Fear in American Political Culture: What Does It Mean for the Future of Higher Education?”

    Louise McBee Lecture

    April 25, 11 a.m., Chapel


    Herbst is the 15th president of the University of Connecticut and the first woman to be selected as president since the school's founding in 1881. She oversees a university system that includes 10 schools and colleges at the Storrs campus, separate schools of law and social work in Hartford, four regional campuses and the schools of medicine and dental medicine at UConn Health in Farmington. A specialist in political science, Herbst is the author of many scholarly journal articles and books, including her most recent book about incivility in American politics, Rude Democracy.

    Sponsored by the Institute of Higher Education.

  • Charles Stewart

    Charles Stewart III

    Kenan Sahin Distinguished Professor of Political Science, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

    “American Elections since 2000: Getting Better, but Not Feeling Better About It”

    George S. Parthemos Lecture

    April 26, 3:30 p.m., Baldwin Hall, Room 480 **


    Stewart is a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. His research and teaching areas include congressional politics, elections and American political development. His current research about Congress touches on the historical development of committees, origins of partisan polarization and Senate elections.

    Co-sponsored by the department of political science and the School of Public and International Affairs.

    ** This lecture has been rescheduled from the original announcement.