Marian Miner Cook

A distinctive
feature of social and
cultural life at CMC

February, 2021

Tuesday, February 02, 2021 - Evening Program
American Democracy in Crisis
Hilary Appel, Lily Geismer, and George Thomas, panelists

For the very first time in American history, the peaceful transfer of power was tested and compromised. Urged on by a sitting president who falsely claimed massive election fraud, a violent mob seized the Capitol Building in an effort to stop the counting of electoral votes. While the insurrection was unsuccessful, millions of Americans continue to believe that the election was stolen. Equally gravely, according to some surveys, one in six Americans do not think it is important to have a democratic form of government. Like never before, American democracy is under tremendous pressure from within. To help put recent events in historical and comparative perspective, a panel of CMC professors, Hilary Appel, Lily Geismer, and George Thomas, will lead a discussion of the challenges and prospects for American democracy going forward.

Hilary Appel is the Podlich Family Professor of Government and George R. Roberts Fellow at Claremont McKenna College. Appel has published numerous books and articles on the politics of economic reform in Russia and Eastern Europe in leading scholarly journals like World Politics, Comparative Politics, Comparative Political Studies, Review of International Political Economy, Post-Soviet Affairs, East European Politics and Societies, and others.

Lily Geismer, associate professor of history at Claremont McKenna College, focuses her research and teaching on 20th century political and urban history in the United States, especially liberalism. She is currently working on a book project entitled "Doing Good: The Democrats and Neoliberalism from the War on Poverty to the Clinton Foundation," which explores the Democratic Party’s promotion of market-based solutions to problems of social inequality. 

George Thomas is the Wohlford Professor of American Political Institutions at Claremont McKenna College and director of the Salvatori Center for the Study of Individual Freedom in the Modern World. He is the author of “The Founders and the Idea of a National University: Constituting the American Mind,” “The Madisonian Constitution,” and co-author of the two volume “American Constitutional Law: Essays, Cases, and Comparative Notes,” as well of numerous scholarly articles.

This panel discussion is sponsored by the Salvatori Center for the Study of Individual Freedom in the Modern World at CMC.

Thursday, February 04, 2021 - Evening Program
How American Journalism Created and Sustained National Myths
Graham Lee Brewer

Graham Lee Brewer, associate editor for Indigenous affairs at High Country News and a member of the Cherokee Nation, will discuss how the long-time, intentional misrepresentations of Indigenous peoples in legacy media historically has helped solidify stereotypes and myth pillars of Indigenous communities, as well as shape the country's perceptions of what it means to be Native.

Photo credit: Dylan Johnson

Graham Lee Brewer is an associate editor for Indigenous affairs at High Country News (“HCN”) and a regular contributor to NPR and the New York Times. A member of the Cherokee Nation, Brewer's work in recent years has focused on representative and placed-based reporting on Indigenous communities. He helped build HCN's Indigenous affairs desk, which has been recognized with multiple awards for its coverage of Indian Country, and his work has appeared in The Guardian, the Marshall Project, BuzzFeed and Teen Vogue. Brewer also serves on the board of directors for the Native American Journalists Association, where he has helped create reporting guides and workshops on how to ethically and responsibly write about and for Indigenous communities.

Photo credit: Dylan Johnson

Monday, February 08, 2021 - Evening Program
Does A Rising Tide Lift All Boats? Racial and Distributional Aspects of Economic Freedom
Gary A. Hoover

The commonplace saying "a rising tide lifts all boats" is associated with the idea that an improved economy will benefit all participants. Popularized in the ‘60s, the aphorism has also been used in recent years to highlight economic inequality. Gary A. Hoover, professor of economics and executive director of the Murphy Institute at Tulane University, will discuss the economists’ definition of “Economic Freedom,” and its impact on the income gap between Black and White households. He will also analyze how banking deregulation, an example of “Economic Freedom,” has impacted income inequality.

Gary A. Hoover is professor of economics and executive director of the Murphy Institute at Tulane University. Before joining Tulane in 2021, he served as professor and department chair of economics at the University of Oklahoma where he was also honored for his professional and scholarly work and for his teaching and mentoring skills.

Before Oklahoma, Hoover spent 16 years at the University of Alabama where he was the William White McDonald Family Distinguished Faculty Fellow and the James I. Harrison Family Endowed Teaching Excellence Faculty Fellow from 2002-2004. He also served as the assistant dean for faculty and graduate student development in the Culverhouse College of Business Administration from 2005-2014 at Alabama.

Hoover is a member, and co-chair, of the American Economics Association’s Committee on the Status of Minority Groups in the Economics Profession. This group was established in 1968 to increase the representation of minorities in the economics profession, primarily by broadening opportunities for the training of underrepresented minorities.

Hoover is the current and founding editor of the Journal of Economics, Race and Policy, which examines the intersection of local and global issues concerning economic conditions, race, ethnicity and gender, and policy prescriptions that address economic disparities. He served as the vice president of the Southern Economic Association from 2018-2020. He has been a fellow at CESifo Group Munich since 2010 and is a member of the Western Economic Association and American Economic Association.

Hoover’s papers have been published in the American Economic Review P&P, Journal of Economic Perspectives, Public Choice, Journal of Economic Literature, International Tax and Public Finance, Journal of Conflict Resolution and the European Journal of Political Economy.

Hoover received his Bachelor of Arts degree in economics from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee in 1993. He earned both his master’s (1995) and PhD (1998) in economics from Washington University in St. Louis.

(Adapted from the Tulane University website.)

Wednesday, February 10, 2021 - Evening Program
Climate Change on the Roof of the World
Aurora C. Elmore

To learn more about the highest reaches of the world, Aurora Elmore, Ph.D., geologist, climate change expert, and Senior Program Manager of Science and Innovation at the National Geographic Society, recently managed the most comprehensive scientific expedition to Mt. Everest, sending a team of 34 multidisciplinary scientists to the world's highest mountain to collect glaciological and meteorological data by installing the highest weather stations in the world. Elmore will share what the data collected on the expedition tells us about how climate changes are playing out on the highest point on Earth.

Aurora Elmore is a geologist and climate change expert who received her Ph.D. in geology with a focus on oceanic chemistry and deep-sea circulation. She then worked as a researcher at several American and British universities before coming to National Geographic, where she is now Senior Program Manager of Science and Innovation. She recently oversaw the 2019 National Geographic and Rolex Everest Expedition, the most comprehensive scientific expedition to Mt. Everest.

Thursday, February 11, 2021 - Evening Program
After the 2020 Election, What's Next for American Democracy?
Richard L. Hasen

Richard L. Hasen, Chancellor's Professor of Law and Political Science at the University of California, Irvine, and an expert in election law, will address the question, "After the 2020 Election, What's Next for American Democracy?" He will consider how the election system and American democracy fared in the unprecedented 2020 election, and what steps need to be taken to assure peaceful transitions of power and election results accepted by American citizens across the political spectrum.

Professor Richard L. Hasen is Chancellor’s Professor of Law and Political Science at the University of California, Irvine. Hasen is a nationally recognized expert in election law and campaign finance regulation, writing as well in the areas of legislation and statutory interpretation, remedies, and torts. He is co-author of leading casebooks in election law and remedies. He served in 2020 as a CNN Election Law Analyst.

From 2001-2010, he served (with Dan Lowenstein) as founding co-editor of the quarterly peer-reviewed publication, Election Law Journal. He is the author of over 100 articles on election law issues, published in numerous journals including the Harvard Law Review, Stanford Law Review and Supreme Court Review. He was elected to The American Law Institute in 2009 and serves as Reporter (with Professor Douglas Laycock) on the ALI’s law reform project: Restatement (Third) of Torts: Remedies. He also is an adviser on the Restatement (Third) of Torts: Concluding Provisions.

Hasen holds a B.A. degree (with highest honors) from UC Berkeley, and a J.D., M.A., and Ph.D. (Political Science) from UCLA. After law school, Hasen clerked for the Honorable David R. Thompson of the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, and then worked as a civil appellate lawyer in private practice.

Professor Hasen's Athenaeum presentation is sponsored by the Salvatori Center for the Study of Individual Freedom in the Modern World at CMC.

Tuesday, February 16, 2021 - Evening Program
Rising Out of Hatred: The Awakening of a Former White Nationalist
Eli Saslow

Eli Saslow’s latest book, "Rising Out of Hatred: The Awakening of a Former White Nationalist," charts the rise of white nationalism through the experiences of one person who, ultimately, abandoned everything he had been rasied to believe. Born out of a Washington Post feature “The White Flight of Derek Black,” Rising Out of Hatred tells the story of how the one-time heir to America’s white nationalist movement came to question the ideology he helped spread. Derek Black might be termed white nationalist royalty: But when Derek chose to attend a tiny liberal arts college, his ideological foundations began to crack.

Photo credit: Joanna Ceciliani

In his Pulitzer Prize-winning coverage for The Washington Post, Eli Saslow, who has been called “one of the great young journalists in America,” reveals the human stories behind the most divisive issues of our time. From racism and poverty to addiction and school shootings, Saslow’s work uncovers the manifold impacts of major national issues on individuals and families. 

Saslow is a longtime staff writer for The Washington Post, where he was initially a sportswriter. He covered the 2008 presidential campaign as well as President Obama’s life in the White House. Four of his stories have been anthologized in Best American Sportswriting, and he is an occasional contributor to ESPN The Magazine. 

Saslow speaks on the role of journalism in highlighting social and public health issues, the craft of longform journalism, the human impacts of public policy, and the importance of civility and radical inclusion. He was the T. Anthony Pollner Distinguished Professor of Journalism at the University of Montana, and he has spoken at Princeton, Syracuse University, UNC Wilmington, UVA, Northwestern, USC, and elsewhere. In 2011, Saslow cofounded Press Pass Mentors, a writing-focused nonprofit for underrepresented high school students in the Washington, DC area

A graduate of Syracuse University, Saslow is the winner of a George Polk Award, a PEN Literary Award, a James Beard Award, and other honors.

Photo credit: Joanna Ceciliani

Thursday, February 18, 2021 - Evening Program
INCLUSIFY: How to Build More Inclusive Teams
Stefanie Johnson ‘00

Based on her bestselling book, “INCLUSIFY,” Stefanie Johnson ‘00, associate professor of management at the University of Colorado Boulder’s Leeds School of Business, will explore what leaders can do to build inclusion by digging into two most basic human needs: to be unique and to belong. From practical strategies to creating actionable steps, Johnson will offer insights to help organizations and leaders increase inclusion from increasing transparency, improving selection, and creating more equitable promotion practices. She will also address some of the unique challenges and opportunities that Covid-19 has created for inclusion and belonging.

Stefanie K. Johnson ’00, Ph.D., is an author, professor, and keynote speaker who studies the intersection of leadership and diversity. As an associate professor at the University of Colorado Boulder’s Leeds School of Business, Johnson teaches undergraduate and graduate students focused on leadership and inclusion.

Her new book, “Inclusify: Harnessing the Power of Uniqueness and Belonging to Build Innovative Teams,” shares the surprising ways leaders can undermine inclusion and provides actionable ways that leaders can pivot to build more inclusive teams.

Johnson is a member of the MG 100 Coaches and was selected for the 2020 Thinkers50 Radar List, comprising 30 international management scholars whose work will shape the future of how organizations are managed and led. She has extensive consulting experience and has created and delivered leadership development training with an emphasis on evidence-based practice. She has received $3,800,000 in external grant funding to study leadership and create leadership development programs. Her safety leadership course was adopted by the OSHA 30 and taken by 70,000 students in its first two years. She is an active researcher and has published 60 journal articles and book chapters in outlets Journal of Applied Psychology and The Academy of Management Journal.

Johnson is also a frequent contributor to Harvard Business Review and an in-demand keynote speaker. She has presented her work at over 170 meetings around the world including at the White House for a 2016 summit on diversity in corporate America on National Equal Pay Day. Media outlets featuring her work include: Forbes, The Economist, Newsweek, Time, Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg, HuffPost, Washington Post, Quartz, Discover, CNN, ABC, NBC, CNBC. She has also appeared on Fox, ABC, NBC, CNN, and CNN International.

Johnson holds a M.A. and Ph.D. in industrial/organizational psychology from Rice University and is a Cum Laude graduate in psychology, with honors, from Claremont McKenna College.

Professor Johnson’s Athenaeum presentation is sponsored by the Kravis Leadership Institute at CMC.

(Text adapted from

Tuesday, February 23, 2021
The GOP After Trump: What's Next for American Politics
Richard Lowry

A respected and well-known conservative voice, Richard Lowry is the editor of National Review. Author of "The Case for Nationalism: How it Made Us Powerful, United and Free," he will address the cross currents within the Republican Party and what the party should learn from and reject about former President Donald J. Trump.

A respected and well-known conservative voice, Richard Lowry, editor of National Review, brings his analysis and opinions to political discussion through his writing and commentary. Lowry became editor of National Review in 1999 when he was selected by William F. Buckley, Jr. to lead the magazine.

Lowry writes for Politico, and often appears on such public affairs programs as Meet the Press. He is a regular panelist on the NPR’s program Left, Right & Center. He is the author of “Lincoln Unbound,” “The Case for Nationalism: How It Made Us Powerful, United, and Free,” and “Legacy: Paying the Price for the Clinton Years,” a New York Times bestseller.


Thursday, February 25, 2021 - Evening Program
Epidemic Contagions, Quarantines, and Curves: A Historical Look from our Current Crisis
Timothy G. Fehler

Timothy Fehler, the William E. Leverette, Jr., Professor of History at Furman University, will present a series of vignettes from historical epidemics of the past four centuries. From their impact on individual lives to broader community and governmental action, experiences from the midst of epidemics offer glimpses both of fortitude and despair, public health measures and private acts of compassion, homemade cures and mathematical models.

Timothy Fehler, the William E. Leverette, Jr., Professor of History at Furman University, joined Furman’s history department in 1995, and for six years he also directed Furman’s Office of Undergraduate Research and Internships. His research has focused particularly on questions of poverty and social welfare as well as religious persecution and co-existence in early modern Europe. During more than two decades of teaching at Furman, Fehler has directed several study away programs in Europe and the Mediterranean, most recently the semester-long program in Central Europe entitled “Repression, Resistance, and Remembrance.” His research also takes him to the archives in and around northern Germany where he has spent considerable time.

As an undergraduate, Fehler studied math and history at Baylor University. He earned his M.A. and Ph.D. in Renaissance and Reformation history from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.