Marian Miner Cook

A distinctive
feature of social and
cultural life at CMC

Current Semester Schedule

Unless otherwise noted, lunch begins at 11:45 a.m.; speaker presentations begin at 12:15 p.m. Evening receptions begin at 5:30 p.m; dinner is served at 6 p.m; speaker presentations begin at 6:45 p.m.

Monday, September 16, 2019 - 5:30pm
Educated: A Memoir
Tara Westover
Born to Mormon survivalist parents opposed to public education, Tara Westover never attended school. Instead she spent her days working in her father's junkyard or stewing herbs for her mother, a self-taught herbalist and midwife. Taught to read by an older brother, her education was erratic and incomplete—until, at the age of seventeen, she decided to get a formal education and experience the world outside of her isolated Idaho community. Spanning many powerful and universal themes, her bestselling book, Educated, is an account of the struggle for self-invention and gets to the heart of what education is and what it can offer as a powerful tool of self-invention.

Tara Westover spent her childhood and teen years preparing for the end of the world by stockpiling home-canned peaches, stewing herbs during the summer for her mother—a midwife and healer— and in the winter, salvaging in her father’s junkyard.

Self-motivated and driven, she then taught herself enough mathematics, grammar, and science to take the ACT and was admitted to Brigham Young University. Without a primary education—without even a birth certificate or exact birth date—she was seventeen the first time she set foot in a classroom. After that first encounter with education—which was both uplifting and devastating—she pursued learning for a decade, graduating magna cum laude from Brigham Young University in 2008 and subsequently winning a Gates Cambridge Scholarship. She earned an M.Phil. from Trinity College, Cambridge in 2009, and in 2010 was a visiting fellow at Harvard University. She returned to Cambridge, where she was awarded a Ph.D. in history in 2014.

Educated was long listed for the 2019 Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence and had spent 32 weeks on the New York Times Bestseller list. Former President Barack Obama named Educated as one of the books on his summer reading list of 2018.

Ms. Westover’s Athenaeum presentation is jointly sponsored by the Athenaeum, the Center for Writing and Public Discourse, the Gould Center for Humanistic Studies, and the President's Leadership Fund, all at CMC.

Photo credit: Lorentz Gullachsen

Tuesday, September 17, 2019 - 5:30pm
What Can Brain Stimulation Tell Us About Being Human?
Nolan Williams
Major mental illness is perhaps the most disabling medical problem in the world and the global health community has responded to this crisis with increasing technology. While these technologies may truly change the problem, the side effect may be that these same technologies change who we are as humans. Nolan Williams, M.D., assistant professor within the departments of psychiatry and behavioral sciences and the director of the Stanford Brain Stimulation Lab, will explore how novel neuro-technologies challenge our conception of who we are and how they may have a role in human evolution.

Nolan Williams, M.D., is an assistant professor within the departments of psychiatry and behavioral sciences and the director of the Stanford Brain Stimulation Lab at Stanford University.

Williams has a broad background in neuropsychiatry, completing residencies in both neurology and psychiatry. In addition, he has specific training and clinical expertise in the development of brain stimulation methodologies. Themes of his work include (a) examining the use of spaced learning theory in the application of neurostimulation techniques, (b) development and mechanistic understanding of rapid-acting antidepressants, and (c) identifying objective biomarkers that predict neuromodulation responses in treatment-resistant neuropsychiatric conditions.

He has published papers in many journals including Brain, American Journal of Psychiatry, and the Proceedings of the National Academy of Science. He has also contributed to two reviews related to novel therapeutics for neuropsychiatric conditions that have been published in the Journal of Clinical Investigation and Current Opinion in Neurobiology.

Results from his studies have gained widespread attention in journals such as Science and New England Journal of Medicine Journal Watch as well as in the popular press and have been featured in various news sources including Time, Smithsonian, and Newsweek.

Williams received an NIH R-series grant within two years of completing his residencies as well as two NARSAD Young Investigator Awards in 2016 and 2018 along with the 2019 Gerald R. Klerman Award. He started the Stanford Brain Stimulation Lab in 2015. He has received several merit-based travel awards to attend and present at the annual meetings for American College of Neuropharmacology, Society of Biological Psychiatry, the American Academy of Neurology and the American Neuropsychiatric Association.

View Video: YouTube with Nolan Williams

Wednesday, September 18, 2019 - 5:30pm
Saving Magic Johnson: The Long and Complicated Race for Cures
Paul Beninger ’73 P’09
Paul Beninger ’73 P’09, associate professor of Public Health & Community Medicine at Tufts University, shares his long perspective on the early years of the HIV epidemic when he was a medical officer at the vanguard of the Food and Drug Administration’s reviewing division for HIV infection and HIV-related diseases. From research and development to reviews and approvals, from the maze of regulations and pricing to—in the case of HIV—the stigma and politics, finding cures for devastatingly fatal diseases is a long and complex road in a system inherently unprepared for such challenges.

Paul Beninger ’73 P’09 is an associate professor of Public Health & Community Medicine at Tufts University where he also directs the MD/MBA and MBS/MBA programs. He has more than three decades of experience as a regulator and member of the Senior Executive Service in the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), as a manager and executive in the pharmaceutical industry, including pharmacovigilance, and as a member of the academic community. 

Beninger began his career in drug development in 1987 at the FDA, first as a reviewer and manager for drugs to combat HIV/AIDS and opportunistic infection and then as a division director for medical devices. He joined Merck & Company in 1995 and developed experience in regulatory affairs, medical affairs and drug safety in the areas of anti-infective drug and biological products, vaccines, anti-diabetic drug products and oncology drug products, before joining Genzyme as vice-president of pharmacovigilance in 2006 where he worked until 2017.

Beninger has published and spoken extensively on regulatory science, drug and vaccine safety, and pharmacovigilance. He is a topics editor (pharmacovigilance and pharmacoepidemiology) for Clinical Therapeutics, and a fellow of the American College of Physicians and the Infectious Disease Society of America.

A 1973 graduate of Claremont McKenna College where he studied mathematics, biology, and psychology, Beninger received his M.D. from the University of California, Davis and subsequently trained in internal medicine and infectious diseases. He also holds an MBA from St Joseph’s University in Philadelphia and a graduate certificate in epidemiology from Tufts.

View Video: YouTube with Paul Beninger '73 P'09

Thursday, September 19, 2019 - 5:30pm
The State of the World: A Global View
Samantha Power
Drawing on her most recent book, The Education of an Idealist, Samantha Power, former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, Pulitzer Prize-winning author, war correspondent, and the Anna Lindh Professor of Practice at Harvard Kennedy School and Harvard Law School, will chronicle her years in public service and reflect on the role of human rights and humanitarian ideals in contemporary geopolitics. Due to high demand for this event, CMC students, faculty, and staff will have priority for any open seats for the lecture. Seats will be allocated on a first-come, first-served basis.

Samantha Power, U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations for President Obama, Pulitzer Prize-winning author, war correspondent, and the Anna Lindh Professor of Practice at Harvard Kennedy School and Harvard Law School, spent half of her career explaining complex geopolitical events and eight years at the UN helping to shape them.

As the 28th U.S. Ambassador to the U.N., Power became the public face of U.S. opposition to Russian aggression in Ukraine and Syria, negotiated the toughest sanctions in a generation against North Korea, lobbied to secure the release of political prisoners, and helped mobilize global action against ISIL. From 2009 to 2013, she served on the National Security Council as special assistant to the President and senior director for Multilateral Affairs and Human Rights.

Called “a powerful crusader for U.S foreign policy as well as human rights and democracy” by Forbes, Power was named one of Foreign Policy’s “Top 100 Global Thinkers.” The American Academy in Berlin awarded her the 2016 Henry A. Kissinger Prize. “She has an excellent and analytical mind,” said Kissinger, “I admire the way she has faced our challenges.”

Her book, A Problem from Hell”: America and the Age of Genocide won the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Critics Circle Award in 2003. 

Before joining the U.S. government, Power was the founding executive director of the Carr Center for Human Rights Policy at the Harvard Kennedy School, a columnist for Time, and a National Magazine Award-winning contributor to the Atlantic, the New Yorker, and the New York Review of Books.

At the age of nine, she immigrated to the United States from Ireland. Power earned a B.A. from Yale University and a J.D. from Harvard Law School. Beginning her career as a journalist, Power reported from places such as Bosnia, East Timor, Kosovo, Rwanda, Sudan, and Zimbabwe.

Ambassador Power’s Athenaeum presentation is jointly sponsored by the Athenaeum, the Lecture in Diplomacy and International Security in Honor of George F. Kennan, Keck Center for International and Strategic Studies, Mgrublian Center for Human Rights, and the President’s Leadership Fund, all at CMC.

Food for Thought: Podcast with Samantha Power

Monday, September 23, 2019 - 5:30pm
Translating Evidence into Practice: Research and Community Perspectives on Adapting Treatments for Diverse Children and Families
Anna S. Lau
When a family seeks mental health care for a child in their community, it should not be presumed that the treatment offered has been shown in research to be effective. There is further concern that the research on effective mental health care has often not included children from diverse racial, ethnic, or cultural backgrounds. Anna Lau, professor of psychology at UCLA, is a child psychologist working to integrate information from treatment research and community mental health providers to address this "research-to-practice gap.”

Anna Lau is a child clinical psychologist and professor of psychology at the University of California, Los Angeles. Her research spans the areas of disparities in children’s mental health services, cultural variation in risk and protective factors for child psychopathology, and community implementation of evidence-based practices. Lau’s work on risk and protective factors for youth in immigrant families has guided her treatment research with Asian American and Latinx children. Another major research effort involves understanding factors that promote the use of evidence-based practices by therapists in community mental health clinics in Los Angeles County.

View Video: YouTube with Anna Lau

Tuesday, September 24, 2019 - 5:30pm
Political Realism: How Hacks, Machines, Pork Barrel Spending and Back Room Deals Can Strengthen Our Democracy
Jonathan Rauch
What's causing the dysfunction in our government and the chaos in our politics? Jonathan Rauch, senior fellow at Brookings and a contributing writer for the Atlantic, argues that well-intentioned efforts to clean up politics backfired, and that party hacks and smoke-filled rooms are part of the solution.

Jonathan Rauch, a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution in Washington, is the author of seven books and many articles on public policy, culture, and government. He is a contributing writer for The Atlantic and recipient of the 2005 National Magazine Award, the magazine industry’s equivalent of the Pulitzer Prize. His latest book is The Happiness Curve: Why Life Gets Better After 50.

In 2013, he published Denial: My 25 Years Without a Soul, a memoir of his struggle with his sexuality, brought out as an ebook from The Atlantic Books. His previous book was Gay Marriage: Why It Is Good for Gays, Good for Straights, and Good for America, published in 2004 by Times Books (Henry Holt). His most recent ebook is Political Realism: How Hacks, Machines, Big Money, and Back-Room Deals Can Strengthen American Democracy (Brookings, 2015). Although much of his writing has been on public policy, he has also written on topics as widely varied as adultery, agriculture, economics, gay marriage, height discrimination, biological rhythms, number inflation, and animal rights.

A graduate of Yale University, Rauch become a reporter for the Winston-Salem Journal in North Carolina before moving to Washington in 1984. From 1984-89 he covered fiscal and economic policy for National Journal. In 1990 he spent six months in Japan as a fellow of the Japan Society Leadership Program.

In addition to the National Magazine Award, his honors include the 2010 National Headliner Award, one of the industry’s most venerable prizes. In 1996 he was awarded the Premio Napoli alla Stampa Estera for his coverage, in The Economist, of the European Parliament. In 2011 he won the National Lesbian and Gay Journalists Association prize for excellence in opinion writing. He has also won two second-place prizes (2000 and 2001) in the National Headliner Awards. His articles appear in The Best Magazine Writing 2005 and The Best American Science and Nature Writing 2004 and 2007. He has appeared as a guest on many television and radio programs. 

Mr. Rauch’s Athenaeum presentation is co-sponsored by the Salvatori Center at CMC.

View Video: YouTube with Jonathan Rauch

Wednesday, September 25, 2019 - 5:30pm
Crashing Out: Will Britain Leave the EU on October 31?
David Andrews
Three years have passed since the British public voted for the United Kingdom to leave the European Union. But so far the British parliament has been unwilling, and a succession of Conservative governments unable, to deliver Brexit. David Andrews, professor of international relations at Scripps College, will assess the continuing deadlock in British politics, identify the United Kingdom's remaining Brexit options, and survey the prospects for the UK’s future relationship with the EU.  

David Andrews is a professor in politics and international relations at Scripps College, where he holds the Jungels-Winkler Chair of Contemporary European Studies. His areas of expertise include Atlantic political, security, and economic relations; the European Union and European integration; international relations, diplomacy and statecraft. 

Andrews received his Ph.D. in political science from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and has held appointments at Georgetown University, the London School of Economics, the University of Southern California, the Naval Postgraduate School, and the European University Institute in Florence, Italy. His books include The Future of Transatlantic Economic Relations: Continuity Amid Discord  (Robert Schuman Centre for Advanced Studies, 2005), The Atlantic Alliance Under Stress: U.S.-European Relations After Iraq (Cambridge University Press, 2005), and Orderly Change: International Monetary Relations Since Bretton Woods (Cornell University Press, 2008). In 1998 he became the founding director of the European Union Center of California.  In 2009 the European Commission appointed him as a Jean Monnet Professor of European Union Studies.  

Professor Andrews' Athenaeum talk is sponsored by the Keck Center for International and Strategic Studies at CMC.

Thursday, September 26, 2019 - 5:30pm
How Imagination Creates Space for Social Progress
Michele Moody-Adams
Michele Moody-Adams, professor of political philosophy and legal theory at Columbia University, shows that imagination is a crucial engine of constructive social change. To effectively address such challenges as persistent economic inequality, gender and racial injustice, and climate change, she argues that we must draw on the power of imagination to help us see, understand and respond to the world in unfamiliar ways.

Michele Moody-Adams is Joseph Straus Professor of Political Philosophy and Legal Theory at Columbia University, where she has also served as dean of Columbia College and vice president for undergraduate education. She holds degrees from Wellesley College, the University of Oxford (where she was a Marshall Scholar), and Harvard University, where she earned her Ph.D. under the direction of John Rawls. She has been a National Endowment for the Humanities Fellow and she is a lifetime Honorary Fellow of Somerville College, Oxford. She is the author of Fieldwork in Familiar Places: Morality, Culture and Philosophy and is currently at work on a book entitled Renewing Democracy. She has also published numerous articles on moral psychology, justice, gender and race, academic freedom, and democratic disagreement.

Professor Moody-Adams' Athenaeum presentation is one of two keynote addresses for the Imagination and Social Change Conference organized and sponsored by the Gould Center for Humanistic Studies.

Monday, September 30, 2019 - 5:30pm
How to Live with China: US-China Relations post-40
Susan Thornton
As the highest-ranking official dealing with East Asia for the first eighteen months of the Trump administration, Susan Thornton, a 28-year veteran of the State Department with expertise on East and Central Asia who is now at Yale Law School’s Paul Tsai China Center, will discuss the flaws and fallacies in the current approach to US-China relations and how a realistic and constructive approach would best serve U.S. long-term interests.

Susan A. Thornton is a visiting lecturer at Yale Law School and Senior Fellow at the Paul Tsai China Center. In 2018, she retired from the State Department after a 28-year diplomatic career focused primarily on East and Central Asia. In leadership roles in Washington, Thornton worked on China and Korea policy, including stabilizing relations with Taiwan, the U.S.-China Cyber Agreement, the Paris Climate Accord and led a successful negotiation in Pyongyang for monitoring of the Agreed Framework on denuclearization.

In her 18 years of overseas postings in Central Asia, Russia, the Caucasus and China, Thornton’s leadership furthered U.S. interests and influence and maintained programs and mission morale in a host of difficult operating environments. Prior to joining the Foreign Service, she was among the first State Department Fascell Fellows and served from 1989–90 at the U.S. Consulate in Leningrad. She was also a researcher at the Foreign Policy Institute from 1987–91. Thornton holds degrees from the National Defense University’s Eisenhower School, the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies, and Bowdoin College. She speaks Russian, Mandarin Chinese and French, is a member of numerous professional associations and is on the board of trustees for the Eurasia Foundation.

Professor Thornton will deliver the Keck Center for International and Strategic Studies' 2019 Arthur Adams Distinguished Lecture. 

Tuesday, October 1, 2019 - 5:30pm
Finally, the Poets: Art(ists) as the Pulse of Collective Healing and Justice
Terisa Siagatonu
What if our health depended on us telling our stories? What if we not only felt better when we expressed our truth artistically, but we actually healed through it. Through dynamic performance and artistic testimony, award-winning poet, speaker, teaching artist, and activist Terisa Siagatonu helps re-imagine a world where artists not only beautify our lives with creative vision, but where they articulate and guide the world in ways that cannot be accomplished through any other profession, field, or discipline.

Terisa Siagatonu is an award-winning poet, teaching artist, mental health educator, and community leader born and rooted in the Bay Area. She has performed and spoken at the Obama White House and at the UN Conference on Climate Change in Paris, France. She was awarded Champion of Change Award in 2012 by President Obama for her activism as a spoken word poet/organizer in her Pacific Islander community.

With numerous viral poetry videos garnering over millions of views collectively, Siagatonu's writing blends the personal, cultural, and political in a way that calls for healing, courage, justice, and truth. A Kundiman Fellow, her work has been published in Poetry Magazine and has been featured on Button Poetry, CNN, NBCNews, NPR, Huffington Post, Everyday Feminism, The Guardian, BuzzFeed and Upworthy. 

Since getting involved in poetry slam in 2010, she has been a member of several award-winning slam teams, including the 2017 inaugural Root Slam Team, helping her team to place 5th in the nation at the National Poetry Slam competition in Denver, CO. When she's not competing, she is coaching college poetry slam teams and mentoring young writers in writing workshops throughout the country. She is one of the co-founders and organizers of The Root Slam, a free bi-weekly poetry venue based in Oakland, CA, voted the 2017 and 2018's Best Open Mic venue in the Bay Area. 

Siagatonu holds a B.A. degree in community studies and a minor in education from the University of California-Santa Cruz and a M.A. in marriage/family therapy from the University of Southern California. She strives to use her background as a mental health clinician and poet to bridge the gaps in the quest for collective healing and liberation. 

Ms. Siagatonu’s Athenaeum presentation is co-sponsored by the Berger Institute at CMC.

Friday, October 4, 2019 - 11:45am
"Working Abroad" vs "Working in Africa": Countering Narratives of Employment as Aid
Jasmine Shirey '18
Jasmine Shirey ’18, who studied literature and neuroscience at CMC, began her work with the Forum for African Women Educationalists - Zimbabwe Chapter (FAWEZI) as an intern in the summer of 2016. Upon graduation in 2018, she was awarded the Napier Fellowship award, the Davis Project for Peace award, and the Mgrublian Center’s Elbaz Family Post-Graduate Fellowship in Human Rights to continue her work with FAWEZI. In her talk, Shirey will explore the various ways narratives in the United States about working in Africa advance conceptions of western excellence and post-colonial generosity, and how her own experiences complicate these narratives. 

Jasmine Shirey ’18, who studied literature and neuroscience at CMC, began her work with the Forum for African Women Educationalists - Zimbabwe Chapter (FAWEZI) as an intern in the summer of 2016. Upon graduation in 2018, she was awarded the Napier Fellowship award, the Davis Project for Peace award, and the Mgrublian Center’s Elbaz Family Post-Graduate Fellowship in Human Rights to continue her work with FAWEZI. In her talk, Shirey will explore the various ways narratives in the United States about working in Africa advance conceptions of western excellence and post-colonial generosity, and how her own experiences complicate these narratives. 

Shirey is the first recipient of the Elbaz Post-Graduate Fellowship in Human Rights, a program open to all CMC graduating seniors.

Ms. Shirey’s Athenaeum presentation is sponsored by the Mgrublian Center for Human Rights at Claremont McKenna College.

Monday, October 7, 2019 - 5:30pm
Medicare for All: Is It the Best Pathway to Universal Coverage?
Gerald F. Kominski
Health care is a leading issue in the 2020 presidential campaign. From a single-payer financing system— Medicare for All—to other sweeping changes, including public options, Medicare and Medicaid buy-ins, and expansion of Obamacare, the Democratic field offers both distinct and over-lapping proposals. Gerald Kominski, professor of health policy and management at UCLA, discusses the differences in these proposals, major barriers to meaningful reform of health care financing, and the prospects for achieving universal coverage in the U.S.

Gerald F. Kominski, Ph.D., is a professor of health policy and management, and senior fellow and former director of the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research in the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health. He is also professor of public policy in the UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs.

Kominski’s current research focuses primarily on evaluating the effects of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Throughout his career, he has focused more generally on evaluating the cost and policy impacts of health care reforms, with a special emphasis on public insurance programs, including Medicare, Medicaid, and Workers’ Compensation.

Kominski joined the UCLA faculty in 1989, after spending over three years at the Congressional agency responsible for monitoring Medicare hospital payment policies, now known as the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC).

He received his Ph.D. in public policy analysis from the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School in 1985, and his A.B. in chemistry from the University of Chicago in 1978. He is editor and co-author of the best-selling textbook, Changing the U.S. Health Care System: Key Issues in Health Services Policy and Management, which was published in its 4th edition in 2014.

View Video: YouTube with Gerald Kominski

Tuesday, October 8, 2019 - 5:30pm
Beyond Borders: Immigration, Trauma, and the American Dream
Reyna Grande
Reyna Grande, bestselling Mexican author of the critically-acclaimed memoirs The Distance Between Us and A Dream Called Home, will speak about her experiences before, during, and after crossing the US-Mexico border as an undocumented immigrant. She will discuss the many borders—real and metaphorical—that immigrants have to cross, and the price that families like hers have to pay for the American Dream.

Reyna Grande is the bestselling author of the memoirs The Distance Between Us and A Dream Called Home. Her other works include the novels Across a Hundred Mountains and Dancing with Butterflies. She is the recipient of the Luis Leal Award for Distinction in Chicano/Latino Literature, an American Book Award, and the El Premio Aztlan Literary Award, among others. She was also a finalist for a National Book Critics Circle Award. She holds a B.A. and M.F.A. in creative writing and teaches at writing conferences such as the Macondo Writer's Conference, the Bread Loaf Writer's Conference, and VONA. Born in Mexico, Reyna walked across the US-Mexico border at nine years old to be reunited with her father. She writes about immigration, trauma, family separation, and displacement.

Ms. Grande’s Athenaeum presentation is co-sponsored by the Claremont Colleges’ Chicano Latino Student Affairs and CMC’s Center for Writing and Public Discourse.

View Video: YouTube with Reyna Grande

Wednesday, October 9, 2019 - 5:30pm
Governing Across the Aisle
Susana Martinez
During her time in office as governor of New Mexico, Susana Martinez's legislative chambers were controlled by the other party, except for a two-year period of one chamber. However, every bill she has ever signed into law has been bipartisan. With a focus on the priorities aimed to make her state a better place to live, work, and raise a family—like growing the economy, strengthening the schools, and prioritizing public safety—she believes that working in a bipartisan manner is the key to enacting good policy. This event is for CMC students, faculty, and staff only.

In 2010, Susana Martinez was elected governor of the state of New Mexico. She became New Mexico’s first female governor and the first Hispanic female governor in the history of the United States. Prior to being elected governor, Martinez was a prosecutor for 25 years along the nation’s southern border and served as Doña Ana County’s elected district attorney for over half that time. As governor, she prioritized keeping New Mexico’s communities safe, ensuring all students receive a high-quality education, and diversifying and growing the state’s economy.

Martinez’s two terms were marked by many successes including eliminating a $450 million inherited budget deficit and leaving the state with a $2 billion surplus; job growth at a 12-year high; improving the state’s high school graduation rate by 10 percentage points – to an all-time high of 74 percent; and implementing a number of public safety initiatives.

Martinez won re-election to her second term in 2014 by the largest margin of any Republican gubernatorial candidate in modern history, earning substantial support from Democratic and Independent voters in rural and urban areas alike. She served alongside a Democratically-controlled Legislature throughout her time in office, with the exception of a two-year period of Republican control of one chamber. She has been named as Time Magazine’s Top 100 Most Influential People in the World (2013) and served as a Chairman and long-time executive committee member of the Republican Governors Association (RGA). 

Born and raised in the Rio Grande Valley, Martinez has lived in Las Cruces, New Mexico since the 1980s. She earned her bachelor’s degree from the University of Texas at El Paso and later earned her law degree from the University of Oklahoma School of Law, where she was recently inducted into the school’s Hall of Fame.

Martinez currently serves as a board member for the Foundation for Excellence in Education (ExcelinEd) and as an advisory board member for the Hunt-Kean Leadership Fellows program of the Hunt Institute.  A proud Blue Star Mother, Martinez is also an advisory board member for the Global War on Terrorism Memorial Foundation. 

Governor Martinez is a William F. Podlich Distinguished Fellow at CMC this fall.

This event is for CMC students, faculty, and staff only.

Thursday, October 10, 2019 - 5:30pm
The Era of Megafires
Paul Hessburg
For over 30 years, Paul Hessburg, research ecologist with Pacific Northwest Research Station, U.S. Forest Service, has worked to understand why highly destructive megafires throughout the Western United States have been on an alarming rise. While ecology and forest management play a crucial role, he believes that megafires are fundamentally a human problem and necessitate a social solution. In a concerted effort to save celebrated lands from catastrophic destruction, this multi-media presentation blends science and storytelling to propose and coordinate effective outreach, response, and policy.

Paul Hessburg, Ph.D., is a research ecologist with Pacific Northwest Research Station, U.S. Forest Service. He has studied historical and modern era forests of the Inland West for the last 32 years and has published extensively in leading national and international journals. His work documents large changes in forest conditions and how these changes, along with climate change, have set the stage for large and severe wildfires.

Hessburg was the recipient of the USFS 2017 R&D Deputy Chief's Distinguished Science Award for his significant contribution to fire and landscape ecology. His most recent book, Making Transparent Environmental Management Decisions, offers compelling new insights into using modern-day decision support systems to plan for forest restoration.

Friday, October 11, 2019 - 11:45am
Gender and Genocide
Adam Jones
Adam Jones, professor of political science at the University of British Columbia in Kelowna, B.C. and author of Gendercide and Genocide, will explore the shaping role of gender in the perpetration and prevention of genocide and will cover related topics including gender-selective mass killing (gendercide), sexual violence, genocidal masculinities and femininities, and gendered propaganda.

Adam Jones, professor of political science at the University of British Columbia in Kelowna, B.C. and executive director of Gendercide Watch, is best known for his work in the field of comparative genocide studies. He is the author or editor of numerous books on genocide and crimes against humanity including Genocide: A Comprehensive Introduction; The Scourge of Genocide: Essays and Reflection; Genocide, War Crimes and the West; and Gendercide and Genocide. He has also published two books on the media and political transition.His writings on gender and international politics have appeared in the Journal of Genocide Research, Review of International Studies, Ethnic & Racial Studies, Caribbean Studies, and other publications.

Throughout his career, Jones has developed a distinctive approach to the study of gender and international relations. In 1999, he co-founded the Web-based NGO Gendercide Watch with Carla Bergman and Nart Villeneuve, aimed at "confront[ing] gender-selective atrocities against men and women worldwide." His essays on gender, violence, and international politics are compiled in Gender Inclusive: Essays on Violence, Men, and Feminist International Relations (Routledge, 2009). Jones was a postdoctoral fellow (2005-07) in the Genocide Studies Program at Yale University and earned his Ph.D. in political science from the University of British Columbia. 

Professor Jones' talk is co-sponsored by the Mgrublian Center for Human Rights at Claremont McKenna College.


View Video: YouTube with Adam Jones

Monday, October 14, 2019 - 5:30pm
Disability & Innovation: The Universal Benefits of Inclusive Design
Haben Girma
People with disabilities represent the largest minority group, numbering one billion worldwide. Reaching a group of this scale creates value for everyone. Organizations that prioritize accessibility benefit by gaining access to a much larger user base, improving the experience for both disabled and non-disabled users, and facilitating further innovation. Haben Girma, an accessibility and inclusion advocate, will discuss the importance and impact of teaching and designing with accessibility in mind.

The first Deafblind person to graduate from Harvard Law School, Haben Girma advocates for equal opportunities for people with disabilities. President Obama named her a White House Champion of Change. She received the Helen Keller Achievement Award, and a spot on the Forbes 30 Under 30 list. Girma believes disability is an opportunity for innovation and travels the world teaching the benefits of choosing inclusion. In August, she published her first book, Haben: The Deafblind Woman Who Conquered Harvard Law. She has since been featured on the Today Show. Her work has also been featured in the Financial Times, BBC, Washington Post, NPR, and more. 

Tuesday, October 15, 2019 - 5:30pm
Strong Economy/Weak Outlook: The Paradox of Today’s Economy
John Taylor, in conversation with Manfred Keil
In July, the U.S. economy set a new post World War II record for the longest expansion. Yet, despite the large number of jobs created and the very low unemployment rates, there are many troubling indicators: economic growth has been low by historical standards, the housing market—even after ten years of expansion—lags behind historical norms during expansions, as do wages and prices at this stage of the business cycle. Moreover, looming large is the threat of job losses to AI. Stanford University’s professor of economics John Taylor, an academic with extensive policy experience in business cycle analysis and monetary, fiscal, and international policy, will add his perspective and insights to the current economic conditions.

John B. Taylor is the Mary and Robert Raymond Professor of Economics at Stanford University and the George P. Shultz Senior Fellow in Economics at the Hoover Institution. He is director of the Stanford Introductory Economics Center. He formerly served as director of the Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research, where he is now a senior fellow.

Taylor’s academic fields of expertise are macroeconomics, monetary economics, and international economics. He is known for his research on the foundations of modern monetary theory and policy, which has been applied by central banks and financial market analysts around the world. He has an active interest in public policy and has served in multiple advising capacities at both the state and federal levels.

For four years from 2001 to 2005, Taylor served as under-secretary of Treasury for international affairs where he was responsible for currency markets, trade in financial services, foreign investment, international debt and development, and oversight of the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank. He was also responsible for coordinating financial policy with the G-7 countries, was chair of the OECD working party on international macroeconomics and was a member of the Board of the Overseas Private Investment Corporation.

His book "Global Financial Warriors: The Untold Story of International Finance in the Post-9/11 World" chronicles his years as head of the international division at Treasury. His book "Getting Off Track: How Government Actions and Interventions Caused, Prolonged, and Worsened the Financial Crisis" was one of the first on the financial crisis, and he has since followed up with two books on preventing future crises, co-editing "The Road ahead for the Fed" and "Ending Government Bailouts As We Know Them." His book "First Principles: Five Keys to Restoring Americas’ Prosperity," was the winner of the 2012 Hayek Prize.

In 2010, Taylor received the Bradley Prize from the Bradley Foundation and the Adam Smith Award from the National Association for Business Economics for his work as a researcher, public servant, and teacher. Taylor was awarded the Alexander Hamilton Award for his overall leadership at the U.S. Treasury, the Treasury Distinguished Service Award for designing and implementing the currency reforms in Iraq, and the Medal of the Republic of Uruguay for his work in resolving the 2002 financial crisis. He was awarded the George P. Shultz Distinguished Public Service Award at Stanford, the Hoagland Prize for excellence in undergraduate teaching and the Rhodes Prize for his high teaching ratings in Stanford’s introductory economics course. He also received a Guggenheim Fellowship for his research, and he is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the Econometric Society; he formerly served as vice president of the American Economic Association.

Previously, Taylor held positions of professor of economics at Princeton University and Columbia University. Taylor received a B.A. in economics summa cum laude from Princeton University in 1968 and a Ph.D. in economics from Stanford University in 1973.

In conversation with Professor Taylor will be CMC's Manfred Keil who received his M. Sc. and Ph.D. from the London School of Economics. After appointments in Montreal and Boston, Keil joined Claremont McKenna College in 1995. He is currently the associate director of the Lowe Institute of Political Economy and the chief economist for the Inland Empire Economic Partnership. He specializes in economic forecasting for geographical areas. He teaches statistics, econometrics, and macroeconomics at CMC.

View Video: YouTube with John Taylor, Manfred Keil

Wednesday, October 16, 2019 - 5:30pm
Save the Oceans, Feed the World
Kathryn Matthews
Covering 71% of the globe and home to most of the life on our planet, the oceans regulate our environment, support the livelihood of millions, and – if properly managed – can provide a healthy seafood meal to a billion people, every day, forever. However, scientists report that our catch of fish is in steady decline, driven by over-exploitation and destructive practices. Kathryn Matthews, chief scientist for Oceana, will discuss her work running strategic, directed campaigns to create political will, allocate resources, pass laws, and otherwise enable the restoration of the world’s oceans.  

Kathryn Matthews, Ph.D., is the chief scientist for Oceana, the largest international advocacy organization dedicated to protecting the world’s oceans. She is responsible for ensuring that Oceana’s advocacy is informed by the best and most current scientific understanding, as well as tracking emerging issues, advising on strategic direction, and supporting the nearly 50 staff scientists across the organization.

Her varied work environments have included Arctic ice caps, Capitol Hill, international treaty negotiations, and the waters of the eastern tropical Pacific.  After 10 years in research, she returned to Washington DC, her hometown, to work as a legislative fellow in the U.S. Congress and then for the Office of Marine Conservation in the U.S. State Department.  Katie continued her science-based policy work with the International Seafood Sustainability Foundation and then with The Pew Charitable Trusts, where she ran a marine conservation and sustainable fisheries grantmaking program. She also serves on the Society for Conservation Biology’s Board of Governors, heading its Marine Section’s board of directors as president (2017-2019).

Matthews has an M.Sc. and Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania in Earth and Environmental Science.

(Source: Oceana)

View Video: YouTube with Kathryn Matthews

Wednesday, October 23, 2019 - 11:45am
A Story of Two People Who Gave Up on Democracy
Julie Lindahl
In April 2010, Brazilian-born Swedish-American Julie Lindahl visited the German Federal Archives only to discover that her grandfather was in the SS and stationed in occupied Poland for the duration of WWII, leaving West Germany for Brazil in 1960 as a new wave of war crimes trials commenced. Lindahl relates her transformational journey through Germany, Poland, Brazil, and Paraguay in which she grapples with the questions of how and why her grandparents made their choices, and the consequences across generations.

Julie Lindahl is an American-Swedish author and educator living in Sweden. She writes and speaks widely about her experiences, is a contributor to WBUR Cognoscenti and has been featured on National Public Radio several times. Julie holds a BA from Wellesley College, an MPhil in International Relations from Oxford University and was a Fulbright Scholar in Frankfurt, Germany.

Raised in ten countries on three continents, she is the founder of Stories for Society, a non-profit organization for renewing the art of storytelling for social transformation, which in 2018 launched “Voices Between: Stories Against Extremism,” an award-winning initiative aimed at creating a force for peace by building a global network of established authors demonstrating and discussing the impact of intolerance, extremism and war through their stories. In 2019 NPR’s Snap Judgment released “Quiet is Best,” a program about her relationship with her grandmother. In 2018 The American Embassy in Sweden provided a grant for the launch of her online learning program for schools and universities in tandem with the publication of “The Pendulum,” which has been critically acclaimed in the U.S. and a best-seller in Sweden.

Ms. Lindahl’s Athenaeum presentation is sponsored by the Mgrublian Center for Human Rights at CMC.

Photo credit: Kajsa Göransson

Wednesday, October 23, 2019 - 5:30pm
Celebrating Writing and Writers at CMC: An Evening with the 2019 Appel Fellows
2019 Appel Fellows
The 2019-20 Appel Fellows, recipients of summer funding to engage in independent writing projects, read some of their work—journal entries, zines, short stories, documentaries, podcasts, and travel narratives to —and reflect on their experiences.

Funded by Joel Appel ‘87, the Appel Fellowship provides first-year students with funding to engage in independent writing projects including:

Axel Ahdritz (’22): A song album and journal inspired by the refugee population in Jordan and Germany.

T.J. Askew (’22): A series of essays inspired by travels along the Pacific Crest Trail to Fairbanks Alaska and based upon the experiences of Chris McCandless.

Raj Bhutoria (’22): Articles that examine the intersection of family history and national identity in India.

Alex Futterman (’22): Essays based on interviews held with extreme athletes in Chile, Peru, and New Zealand.

Maria Gutierrez-Vera (’22): Vignettes - inspired by the work of Sandra Cisneros - that capture the experiences of the author’s grandmother.

Madelyn Kwun (’22): A children's book that introduces young readers to Asian-American history and culture, based on travels through South Korea. Madison Menard (’22): A photojournalism series that represents the culture of "historic soccer" in rival Italian provinces.

Marisa Mestichella (’22): A documentary and "how-to" guide to street performance, based on travels to New York, New Orleans, and Nashville.

Serena Myjer (’22): Essays inspired by the work of John Muir created while the author walks the John Muir Trail.

Robin Peterson (’22): A short story collection that represents the experiences of refugees in Jordan.

Daenerys Pineda (’22): A series of short stories depicting heritage sites in Northern California.

Courtney Reed (’22): A documentary that represents the history of the hair industry in Atlanta, China, and India.

Toluwani Roberts (’22): A zine featuring essayettes, poetry, and interviews related to the expression of spirituality and the natural world in Equador.

Dorcas Saka (’22): Short stories that represent the experiences of Muslim communities in Chicago, New Jersey, Arkansas, and Arizona.

Sobechukwu Uwajeh (’22): A podcast series that examines the impact gentrification has had upon people of color in Chicago and New York.

Kyril Van Schendel (’22): A documentary film based on the author's experiences distance running in the South West U.S.

Laura Vences (’22): A zine that explores the connections between immigration, labor, and the Latinx community in several U.S. cities.

Kimberly Zamora-Delgado (’22): A collection of stories based on interviews with park rangers and visitors at National Parks on the west coast of the U.S.

Alison Marouk-Coe & Shania Sharna (’22): An experiment in immersive empathy based on travels to locations - such as Mumbai and Beijing - that are significant to the authors.

Note: Some Fellows are not pictured.

Thursday, October 24, 2019 - 11:45am
Latino Healthcare, Poverty and Other Equity Issues
Michael A. Rodríguez
A national expert on health equity and social determinants of health, Michael A. Rodríguez, M.D., professor and vice chair in the departments of family medicine and community health sciences at UCLA Medical School, will address how healthcare, poverty, and other equity-related issues are impacted by social and economic forces and, in particular, how these affect Latino communities in the state and nation.

Michael A. Rodríguez is professor and vice chair in the UCLA Departments of Family Medicine and Community Health Sciences; he is also the founding director of the Health Equity Network of the Americas and founding chair of the UCLA Minor in Global Health.

His research activities focus on health equity and social determinants of health. He is a leading researcher and policy expert in the areas of intimate partner violence, social cohesion, quality of health care and health for immigrants and other groups across the age spectrum. He has published widely and consulted for the World Health Organization, UNICEF, the Pan American Health Organization, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the Institute of Medicine. He is also a board member for the Blue Shield of California Foundation and Latino Coalition for a Healthy California.

Rodríguez is currently investigator of a NIH-funded project examining how state-level policies for immigrants impact their health and access to health care. He is also co-principal investigator for the UCLA University of California Firearm Violence Prevention Center.

Rodríguez completed his undergraduate training at the University of California, Berkeley, attended medical school at UCLA, and completed his residency at the University of California, San Francisco. He obtained his master’s in public health from the Johns Hopkins University School of Hygiene and Public Health and was a Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholar at the Stanford-UCSF Program.

Thursday, October 24, 2019 - 5:30pm
The Global Struggle for Environmental Justice
Vivek Maru
Vivek Maru, founder of Namati which strives to lead innovations in legal empowerment, will describe the efforts of people directly affected by environmental destruction—small hold farmers in Sierra Leone, fisher people on the coast of India, families in an industrial zone of Baltimore—to exercise their rights. Offering lessons about law, power, and institutions that emerge from this work, he will weave a story about how these struggles are connected to each other, and to all of us.

Vivek Maru founded Namati in 2011 to grow the movement for legal empowerment around the world. Namati and its partners have supported cadres of grassroots legal advocates – sometimes known as “barefoot lawyers”– in ten countries. These advocates work with vulnerable people to protect community lands, enforce environmental law, and secure basic rights to healthcare and citizenship.

Namati convenes the Global Legal Empowerment Network, more than 2,000 groups from 160 countries who are learning from one another and collaborating on common challenges. This community successfully advocated for the inclusion of access to justice in the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals.

Maru is co-author of Community Paralegals and the Pursuit of Justice (Cambridge University Press). His TED talk, How to Put the Power of Law in People’s Hands, has been viewed over a million times.

Monday, October 28, 2019 - 5:30pm
Faith in the Now: Some Notes on Poetry and Immortality
Jericho Brown
Readers and writers are—and should be—skeptical of any framework that purports a clear divide between good and evil. We are compelled, exhorted, and trained to discover and to create worlds that are as complex as the lives we live. In his talk, poet Jericho Brown—professor and director of the creative writing program at Emory University and recipient of a Whiting Writers’ Award and fellowships from the John Simon Guggenheim Foundation, the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard University, and the National Endowment for the Arts—will explore poetry as a vehicle for representing that complexity.

Jericho Brown is the recipient of a Whiting Writers’ Award and fellowships from the John Simon Guggenheim Foundation, the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard University, and the National Endowment for the Arts. Brown’s first book, Please (2008), won the American Book Award. His second book, The New Testament (2014), won the Anisfield-Wolf Book Award and was named one of the best of the year by Library Journal, Coldfront, and the Academy of American Poets. He is also the author of the collection The Tradition (2019). His poems have appeared in Buzzfeed, The Nation, The New York Times, The New Yorker, The New Republic, Time, and The Pushcart Prize Anthology, and several volumes of The Best American Poetry anthologies.

Brown grew up in Louisiana and worked as a speechwriter for the mayor of New Orleans before earning his Ph.D. in literature and creative writing from the University of Houston. He also holds an MFA in creative writing from the University of New Orleans and graduated magna cum laude from Dillard University. He is an associate professor and the director of the Creative Writing Program at Emory University in Atlanta.

Professor Brown’s Athenaeum presentation is co-sponsored the Center for Writing and Public Discourse at CMC.

Tuesday, October 29, 2019 - 5:30pm
MASS MEDIA. Then and Now. Old and New. A Generational Perspective.
Kendyl Klein '14 and Jeff Klein '75
The world of marketing, media, and communications has been entirely disrupted. Gone is the era when newspapers, broadcast television, and magazines set the agenda and were society’s info gatekeepers. Today, social media, smart phone news alerts, and 24/7 newscasts bombard us with conflicting information—and misinformation. The world of “Mad Men” has been replaced by “influencers.” Father-daughter CMC duo, Jeff Klein ’75, a long time media executive and Kendyl Klein ’14, a new media strategist, represent the generational shift in the mass media landscape and will discuss the fast-paced digital landscape, how mass media has changed and the implications for brand management, advertising, and society in general. 

Jeff Klein ’75 studied political science and psychology at CMC and has served on the CMC Board of Trustees since 2010. A long-time media executive, lawyer, writer, and communications professor, Klein was a senior executive at the LA times for 15 years and is the founder of a B2B multimedia company. He is also a columnist and a lecturer.

Kendyl Klein ’14, a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of CMC, majored in media studies and is an expert in digital content strategy, audience development, social media, and client services. Since graduation, she has worked as a strategist at AT&T’s Fullscreen, a social-first, digital content company that provides creative, strategy, marketing, and even production services for digital creators and brand clients, including national brands such as Mattel, NBCUniversal and GE. She is now the manager of market intelligence and analytics at Barstool Sports in New York City.

Wednesday, October 30, 2019 - 5:30pm
Border Wars: Inside Trump's Assault on Immigration
Michael Shear '90
In Border Wars, Michael D. Shear '90 and his co-author, Julie Hirschfeld Davis, both reporters for the New York Times who have covered the Trump Administration from its earliest days, document how President Trump and his allies blocked asylum-seekers and refugees, separated families, threatened deportation, and sought to erode the longstanding consensus in favor of immigration. Border Wars describes how Trump planned, stumbled, and fought his way toward changes that have polarized the nation and how his decision-making is marked by gut instinct, disorganization, paranoia, and a constantly feuding staff.   

Michael D. Shear ’90 is a White House correspondent at The New York Times. A veteran political correspondent in Washington, he spent eighteen years writing about local, state, and national politics at The Washington Post, where he was also part of the Pulitzer Prize-winning team that covered the Virginia Tech shootings in 2007.

Shear is a 1990 graduate of Claremont McKenna College where he majored in government and journalism and has a master’s in public policy from Harvard's Kennedy School of Government.



Thursday, October 31, 2019 - 11:45am
Staying on top of the Data: The impact of Food on Sexual Health
Priyanka Wali
As America's only Indian female stand-up comedian and board-certified physician, Priyanka Wali, M.D., imparts knowledge in a humorous and discreet way. Committed to a “Food is Medicine” approach to health and wellness, she will offer information about how what you eat impacts your health, including your sexual health.

Named by Refinery29 as a "50 Female Stand-Up Comedians You Need to Know”, Dr. Priyanka Wali is a stand-up comic who performs routinely throughout the United States and abroad, including at corporate gigs, casinos, and comedy clubs.  She has been featured on KFOG Radio, Women's Health Magazine, The Today Show, Business Insider, Uproxx, Cosmopolitan, India Currents Magazine, and Healthline. 

A believer that laughter is truly the best medicine, she still likes to cover her bases as a board-certified practicing physician in internal medicine and obesity medicine. Wali graduated cum laude from the University of Southern California and continued there for medical school. She completed her residency in internal medicine at California Pacific Medical Center in San Francisco. Her philosophical approach to medicine stems from holistic concepts primarily that "Food is Medicine" and that many medical illnesses arise from disconnection of natural-occurring phenomenon. She encourages dietary therapies that can help manage, if not reverse, common conditions. Wali is particularly interested in health optimization for individuals of all ages and demographics and has a passion for solving medical conundrums.

Dr. Wali’s Athenaeum presentation is co-sponsored by the CMC Advocates’ as part of Safe Sex Week programming.



Monday, November 4, 2019 - 5:30pm
What's Good: Reckoning with the Horror of One of Our Most Overused Words
Kiese Laymon
Kiese Laymon, award winning author of Heavy, Kiese Laymon, will explore the unspoken traumas and joys embedded in the word "good" in his home, region, and nation.

Kiese Laymon is a southern writer, born and raised in Jackson, Mississippi. Laymon attended Millsaps College and Jackson State University before graduating from Oberlin College. He earned an MFA in Fiction from Indiana University. Laymon is currently the Ottilie Schillig Professor of English and Creative Writing at the University of Mississippi. He served as the Distinguished Visiting Professor of Nonfiction at the University of Iowa in Fall 2017.  

Laymon is the author of the novel, Long Division and a collection of essays, How to Slowly Kill Yourself and Others in America, and Heavy: An American Memoir. Heavy, winner of the Andrew Carnegie Medal, the LA Times Isherwood Prize for Autobiographical Prose and Audible’s Audiobook of the Year, was named one of the Best Books of 2018 by The Undefeated, New York Times, Publishers Weekly, NPR, Broadly, Library Journal, The Washington Post, Southern Living, Entertainment Weekly, San Francisco Chronicle, and The New York Times Critics.

Laymon has written essays, stories and reviews for numerous publications including Esquire, McSweeneys, New York Times, Virginia Quarterly Review, ESPN the Magazine, Granta, Colorlines, NPR, LitHub, The Los Angeles Times, The Guardian, PEN Journal, Fader, Oxford American, Vanity Fair, The Best American Series, Ebony, Travel and Leisure, Paris Review, Guernica and more. 

Professor Laymon’s Athenaeum presentation is sponsored by the Gould Center for Humanistic Studies at CMC.

Wednesday, November 6, 2019 - 5:30pm
Vulnerable Leadership: Management Lessons from Facebook and Amazon
Dan Rose P'20
With 20 years of combined senior management experience both at Facebook and Amazon, Dan Rose P’20 developed—and will share—a philosophy of vulnerable leadership that guided his management style and helped him grow from an individual contributor to leading a large and transformational global organization.

Dan Rose P'20 is chairman of Coatue, a venture capital firm based in San Francisco. Prior to Coatue, Rose spent 20 years in leadership roles at both Amazon and Facebook. He was at Amazon from 1999-2006, where he managed retail divisions and helped incubate the Kindle. As vice president of partnerships at Facebook from 2006-2019, he helped grow the company from 130 employees to more than 30,000 and was responsible for early monetization strategy, business development, M&A, and community operations. In 2013, Rose joined the board of REDF, a non-profit that helps people with barriers to employment find jobs.

An avid surfer and golfer, Rose graduated from Harvard College.

Thursday, November 7, 2019 - 11:45am
Bridging the Gap Between Science and Service: Clinical Research with Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder
Marjorie Charlop
Within the next ten years, we are each likely to have a personal experience with a child with autism, underscoring the importance of aggressive clinical research focused on cutting edge interventions effective both in labs and other settings. Marjorie Charlop, professor of psychology at Claremont McKenna College and director of The Claremont Autism Center, will share her extensive experiences and impactful observations working and interacting with children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), who are often themselves the source for ideas for evidence-based research procedures and protocols.

Marjorie H. Charlop, Ph.D., BCBA, has enjoyed a long career helping children with autism and their families. She is a professor of psychology at CMC and director of The Claremont Autism Center, her renowned research and treatment center for children with ASD and their families. As a licensed psychologist, she also maintains a private practice and consultation services.

Charlop has hundreds of professional conference presentations and publications in the field of autism and has done keynote addresses, workshops, and lectures around the globe. A dedicator contributor to the field, her most recent book is “Play and Social Skills for Children with ASD”. She is also the author of “Naturalistic and Incidental Teaching,” now in second addition.

Her research areas focus on communication, motivation, social skills, behavior problems and parent collaboration and education She has crafted several well used treatment protocols such as video modeling and used everyday technology to enhance learning. 

Professor Charlop is the recipient of the 2018-19 CMC Faculty Scholarship Award.

Thursday, November 7, 2019 - 5:30pm
Never Enough: The Neuroscience and Experience of Addiction
Judy Grisel
Judith Grisel, professor of psychology and neuroscience at Bucknell University, began using recreational drugs when she was 13 and ended up in a treatment center at 23. She went on to a research career studying the neuroscience of substance use disorders, and eventually to write a recent New York Times bestseller Never Enough: The Neuroscience and Experience of Addiction. Her talk will illustrate the neural changes that underlie the development substance use disorders and make recovery so challenging.

Judith Grisel, Ph.D., is an internationally recognized behavioral neuroscientist and a professor of psychology and neuroscience at Bucknell University with expertise in pharmacology and genetics. Her research focuses on determining root causes of drug addiction. She is recognized as a distinguished mentor by the Howard Hughes Medical Institute for her collaboration in this research with undergraduate students, has been the recipient of numerous grants from the National Institutes of Health, and is the author of a New York Times Bestseller and NB Book of the Month.

Monday, November 11, 2019 - 5:30pm
Red State Blues: How the Conservative Revolution Stalled in the States
Matthew Grossman ‘01
Over the last quarter century, a nationalized and increasingly conservative Republican Party made unprecedented gains at the state level, winning control of 24 new state governments. Liberals and conservatives alike anticipated far-reaching consequences, but what has the Republican revolution in the states achieved? Matthew Grossman ’01, associate professor of political science at Michigan State University, argues that contrary to liberals' fears, conservative state governments, although effective at staying in power, have largely failed to enact policies that advance conservative goals or reverse prior liberal gains and, where they have had policy victories, the consequences on the ground have been surprisingly limited.

Matt Grossmann '01 is director of the Institute for Public Policy and Social Research and associate professor of political science at Michigan State University. He is also senior fellow at the Niskanen Center and contributor at FiveThirtyEight. He is the author of Red State Blues (2019), Asymmetric Politics (with David A. Hopkins, 2016), Artists of the Possible (2014), and The Not-So-Special Interests (2012). He has published research in eighteen scholarly journals and political analysis in The New York Times, The Washington Post, and Politico. He hosts The Science of Politics podcast. 

Grossman received his Ph.D. and M.A., both in political science, from the University of California, Berkeley. He graduated magna cum laude from Claremont McKenna College in 2001 where he majored in government.

Professor Grossman’s Athenaeum presentation is co-sponsored by the Rose Institute of State and Local Government at CMC.

Monday, November 11, 2019 - 5:30pm
Israeli Society at a Crossroads
Tal Schneider
Do current trends in Israeli society have the potential to bring about a new Israeli order? Could the growing divisions among secular, national-religious, ultra-Orthodox, and Arab communities be the harbinger of significant social and economic changes? How would such changes change the future of Israel as a Jewish and democratic state?  Award-winning journalist Tal Schneider has covered Israeli politics and society for almost two decades and will bring her keen insight to examine Israeli society at this transitional moment and to discuss the prospects for Israeli’s future.

Tal Schneider covers the Israeli political scene, Israeli foreign policy, the U.S.-Israel relationship, Middle East diplomacy, and the Jewish world. Between 2004 and 2009, she served as Ma’ariv’s Washington, D.C. correspondent. Her political blogs have won her the 2012 Google Digital Excellence in Journalism Award and the 2015 Ometz Award for courage in the public sphere. Before embarking on her career in journalism, Schneider worked as a media lawyer in Israel’s leading media law firm, where she was responsible for censorship cases, gag-orders, and libel court litigation. She is a founder and board member of Israel’s Journalism Association, a founding member of Israel Women Reporters Society, and a frequent commentator on Israeli radio and television. She is also a frequent visitor to the United States and will be covering the 2020 presidential campaign (including primaries and both national conventions).

Ms. Schneider’s talk is co-sponsored by the Jewish Studies Sequence, the department of Religious Studies, the Keck Center for International and Strategic Studies, and Hillel of the Claremont Colleges.

(Parents Dining Room)


Tuesday, November 12, 2019 - 5:30pm
Unflattening Thinking in Comics
Nick Sousanis
Nick Sousanis, Eisner-winning comics author and assistant professor in Humanities & Liberal Studies at San Francisco State University, will discuss his experiences writing and drawing his doctoral dissertation entirely in comic form. Published by Harvard University Press as “Unflattening,” the work argues for the importance of visual thinking for teaching and learning and challenges the forms of learning traditionally found in academic settings. Drawing on extensive visual examples from his own work as well as other comics authors, Sousanis will call attention to the dominance of the written word, encouraging instead an interconnected production of knowledge created from both verbal and visual forms.

Nick Sousanis is an Eisner-winning comics author and an assistant professor of Humanities & Liberal Studies at San Francisco State University, where he is starting a Comics Studies program. He received his doctorate in education at Teachers College, Columbia University in 2014, where he wrote and drew his dissertation entirely in comic book form. Titled Unflattening, it argues for the importance of visual thinking in teaching and learning, and was published by Harvard University Press in 2015. Unflattening received the 2016 American Publishers Awards for Professional and Scholarly Excellence (PROSE Award) in Humanities, the Lynd Ward Prize for best Graphic Novel of 2015, and was nominated for an Eisner Award for Best Scholarly/Academic work. To date, Unflattening has been translated into French, Korean, Portuguese, Serbian, Polish, Italian, and Chinese.

Before coming to New York City, he was immersed in Detroit’s arts community, where he co-founded the arts and culture site and became the biographer of legendary Detroit artist Charles McGee. He developed and taught courses on comics as powerful communication tools at Teachers College and Parsons in NYC, and Comics as a Way of Thinking at the University of Calgary in Fall of 2015. Since fall 2016, he has been an assistant professor at San Francisco State University.

Sousanis’s work has been featured with reviews and interviews in such places as The Paris Review, The New York Times, the LA Review of Books, PrintMag, Inside Higher Ed, The Chronicle of Higher Education, Publishers Weekly, Microsoft’s Daily Edventures, and Russia’s Theory & Practice for the new possibilities for scholarship that it represents. He’s been invited to speak on comics, education, and alternative scholarship at such places as the National Gallery of Art (DC), Stanford University, Harvard’s MetaLab, Microsoft Research (which also hosted an exhibition of the work), and more, along with keynote addresses at the annual conferences of the Visitor Studies Association and the International Visual Literacy Association. His work has been on display in Moscow, the Netherlands, Microsoft Research, and more.

Recent comics include “Against the Flow” and “Upwards” in The Boston Globe, “The Fragile Framework” for Nature in conjunction with the 2015 Paris Climate Accord co-authored with Rich Monastersky, and “A Life in Comics” for Columbia University Magazine – for which he received an Eisner Award for Best Short Story in 2018.


Wednesday, November 13, 2019 - 5:30pm
Trillion Dollar Coach: Leadership Playbook of Silicon Valley
Jonathan Rosenberg ’83 P ’14
Renowned as the ultimate coach, the legendary Bill Campbell mentored some of the best and brightest tech entrepreneurs, including Apple co-founder Steve Jobs and Google co-founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin. In honor of Bill Campbell, Jonathan Rosenberg ’83 P’14, along with co-authors Eric Schmidt and Alan Eagle, wrote “Trillion Dollar Coach”—simultaneously a #1 Wall Street Journal, New York Times, and USA Today Bestseller—which highlights some of Campbell’s most valuable lessons in forward-thinking business and management and gives a unique glimpse into the fast-paced environment of Silicon Valley.

Jonathan Rosenberg ’83 P ’14 first met Google founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin in 2000 and finally accepted a job at their company the third time they offered it, more than two years later. He served as senior vice president at Google and ran the Google product team until April 2011. In that expansive role, he oversaw the design, development, and evolution of Google’s products for consumers, advertisers, and partners. He helped develop the company’s hiring processes and was influential in setting its communications and marketing practices. Rosenberg is now an advisor to Alphabet management. Along with the recently released “Trillion Dollar Coach," he is the author, along with Eric Schmidt, of the New York Times best-selling book “How Google Works.”

Prior to joining Google, Rosenberg ran products and services at Excite@Home, managed the eWorld product line for Apple Computer, and directed product marketing for Knight Ridder Information Services.

Rosenberg holds an MBA from the University of Chicago and a bachelor’s degree with honors in economics from Claremont McKenna College, where he graduated Phi Beta Kappa.

Wednesday, November 13, 2019 - 5:30pm
France: How Can One Be Black in a Country Where Race Does Not Exist?
Rokhaya Diallo
In France, race does not exist. French people are raised believing that there is only one race: the human race. Despite this belief, racial disparities operate at every level of French society, which creates a major contradiction. Rokhaya Diallo, an award-winning French journalist, will discuss how millions of Black French citizens reconcile their existence with the non-acknowledgment of their experience.

Rokhaya Diallo is a French journalist, writer, filmmaker, and activist for racial, gender, and religious equality. TV host and a pundit on several French and international networks, Diallo is also a contributor to several newspapers and magazines. She has produced and/or has directed TV and radio programs and documentaries including the award-winning Steps to Liberty. She has published Racism: a guide; France Belongs to Us; France: One and Multicultural, How to talk to kids about racism, Afro!; and a graphic novel Pari(s) d'Amies.

Ms. Diallo's Athenaeum presentation is co-sponsored by the department of Modern Languages and Intercollegiate Department of Africana Studies.

Photo credit: Mario Epanya

(Freeberg Dining)


Thursday, November 14, 2019 - 5:30pm
The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly: How the United States and China Fail the Global Environmental Governance System
Robert Dry
In the fifty years of the global environmental governance system, UN member states have negotiated and implemented dozens of multilateral environmental agreements (MEA’s) to address critical planetary challenges, from climate change to transportation of hazardous substances to species extinction. Yet, many of these agreements fail to halt the underlying crisis they seek to address. Using case studies, Robert Dry, adjunct professor of international relations at New York University and William F. Podlich Distinguished Fellow at CMC this fall, will demonstrate American and Chinese recalcitrance in meeting obligations in this global system.

Trained as a lawyer, Robert Dry served as a U.S. Foreign Service Officer in the Middle East, East, and Southeast Asia. He teaches international relations at New York University and is at Claremont McKenna College this fall as a Podlich Distinguished Fellow. His research interests include diplomatic studies (the study of diplomacy as an institution of international society), the Persian Gulf, and U.S. foreign policy in that region, and both public and private international law.

Dry began his career at the U.S. Department of State as the judicial assistance officer (practitioner of private international law) and participated in the claims process against Iran following the 1979 Iranian revolution. He implemented aspects of the then just enacted Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act. In his first overseas assignment in the Foreign Service, he was posted in the U.S. Interests Section of the Belgium Embassy in Baghdad to serve as consul during the Iran/Iraq war. Subsequent foreign assignments included including Muscat, Guangzhou, Jakarta, Riyadh, Hanoi, Muscat, and Paris, among other postings including in the the State Department.

Dry holds a Master of Arts degree in British legal history and classical Arabic and Islamic studies from the University of Glasgow in Scotland and a J.D. from George Washington University’s National Law Center. In the Foreign Service, Dry studied economics, Middle Eastern, and Southeast Asian area studies, and successfully tested in Arabic, Chinese, French, Indonesian, and Vietnamese.

Monday, November 18, 2019 - 5:30pm
"Be Water": Hong Kong's protests and Beijing's response
James Kynge
It is as if the two big weather systems that animate global politics have clashed over Hong Kong, posits James Kynge, global China editor at the Financial Times. The confrontation between aspirations for greater democracy in Hong Kong and Beijing's authoritarian response is generating fundamental questions: Can Beijing permit greater freedoms in Hong Kong or is a crackdown by security forces inevitable? If China toughens its response, what could that mean for Beijing's relationship with the west and its attempts to woo Taiwan?

James Kynge is global China editor at the Financial Times, based in Hong Kong. He writes about China's growing global footprint in business, finance and politics. He spent more than 25 years reporting from mainland China, Taiwan and Hong Kong, as well as other countries in Asia. 

His bestselling 2009 book, China Shakes the World, forecast that China and the US-led west would be unable to co-exist because of fundamental differences in their political and economic systems and that confrontation was inevitable. 

The recipient of several awards for his work, Kynge recently won the Wincott Foundation's top prize for journalism.

Mr. Kynge's Athenaeum presentation is co-sponsored by the International Journalism Program at the Keck Center for International and Strategic Studies at CMC.

Tuesday, November 19, 2019 - 5:30pm
The Levant Express: The Arab Uprisings, Human Rights and the Future of the Middle East
Micheline Ishay
Many were filled with hopes during the Arab uprisings, but now look upon the region with despair. Against the current, Micheline Ishay, Distinguished Professor of International Studies and Human Rights at the Josef Korbel School of International Studies at the University of Denver, reveals the potential of subterranean human rights forces and charts realistic and progressive pathways for a region beset by political repression, economic distress, sectarian conflict, a refugee crisis, and violence against women.

Micheline Ishay is a political scientist known for her work in political theory, international relations, human rights, foreign policy, and the Middle East. She is Distinguished Professor of International Studies and Human Rights at the Josef Korbel School of International Studies at the University of Denver, where she serves as director of the International Human Rights Program. She is an affiliate faculty member with the Center for Middle East Studies, was executive director of the Center on Rights Development, and in 2008 was named University of Denver Distinguished Scholar.​

Ishay received a Ph.D. in political science and international studies from Rutgers University. She was a fellow at the Center for Critical Culture and Contemporary Analysis, Rutgers University; assistant professor at Hobart and William Smith College; senior fellow at the Center for Democracy Collaborative, University of Maryland (2004); Lady Davis Visiting Professor, Hebrew University (2006); and visiting professor, Khalifa University, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates (2010-2013). She was resident fellow at the Bellagio Center, Rockefeller Foundation, Italy, Fall 2015. 

Often interviewed in the international press, Ishay frequently contributes to international forums in Europe and the Middle East and lectures on international issues in the U.S. Her books, The History of Human Rights and The Human Rights Reader have been translated into multiple languages. Her latest book, The Levant Express: The Arab Uprisings, Human Rights, and the Future of the Middle East, was released in August 2019 by Yale University Press. From 2010 to 2013, Ishay worked in the Gulf region from a unique vantage point, as female American scholar in human rights including teaching the first human rights courses in the Arab world just before and throughout the tumultuous events starting in late 2010.

Professor Ishlay’s Athenaeum talk is sponsored by the Mgrublian Center for Human Rights at Claremont McKenna College and the Siam Family Foundation.

Wednesday, November 20, 2019 - 5:30pm
Why Early Modern History Matters: Tracking the Terminology of "Difference" in Past Lives and Present Perspectives
Heather Ferguson
In a world dominated by escalating environmental, social, and political crises, Heather Ferguson, associate professor of history at CMC, believes that the discipline of history serves as a mechanism that introduces a “pause” in potentially volatile debates. Studying the past requires caution, an awareness of difference across geographies, experiential frames, and chronologies, and the time to construct an argument based on contextual analysis. She will illustrate how studying an early modern empire, shaped by the Ottoman dynasty and lasting for almost 600 years, yields new frameworks for analyzing how categories of difference are meticulously constructed through a convergence of institutional structures and everyday practice which, centuries later, help us "see" the definitions that shape our own contemporary experiences.

Heather Ferguson is an associate professor of Ottoman and Middle Eastern History at Claremont McKenna College. She received an M.A. in Middle Eastern Studies from the University of Texas-Austin and a Ph.D. from the University of California-Berkeley. She joined the faculty at CMC in 2011 after completing a two-year postdoctoral position at Stanford University with the Abbasi Program in Islamic Studies and History Departments.

Ferguson is an American Council of Learned Societies Fellow, 2014-2015, for her book project entitled The Proper Order of Things: Language, Power and Law in Ottoman Administrative Discourses published by Stanford University Press in June 2018. Currently she is working on a second monograph that explores Sovereign Valedictions: “Last Acts” in Ottoman and Habsburg Courts supported by an NEH Summer Research Stipend. Her research focuses broadly on comparative early modern empires, documentary genres and discourses of power, linkages between archives and state governance, as well as on legal and urban transformations around the Mediterranean. She serves as editor of the Review of Middle East Studies, associate editor for the International Journal of Islamic Architecture and was an inaugural member of the Claremont Faculty Leadership Program.

Thursday, November 21, 2019 - 5:30pm
The Other Rama: Matricide and Genocide in the Mythology of Parashurama
Brian Collins
Brian Collins, Drs. Ram and Sushila Gawande Chair in Indian Religion and Philosophy at Ohio University, will discuss the reception history of the myth cycle of Parashurama, or "Rama with the Axe," an incarnation of the Hindu high god Vishnu best known for decapitating his mother and killing twenty-one generations of warriors to avenge his father's death.

Brian Collins is department chair and associate professor of Classics and World Religions at Ohio University. His publications include The Head Beneath the Altar: Hindu Mythology and the Critique of Sacrifice (Michigan State University Press, 2014), The Other Rāma: Matricide and Genocide in the Mythology of Paraśurāma (Forthcoming from SUNY), and the co-edited volume Bollywood Horrors: Religion, Violence and Cinematic Fears in India (forthcoming from Bloomsbury Academic).

Professor Collins's Athenaeum lecture is sponsored by the Kutten Lectureship in Religious Studies at CMC.

(Parents Dining Room)

Thursday, November 21, 2019 - 5:30pm
Theatre in the Round: CHECK PLEASE
Under the Lights
Dating can be hard. Especially when your date happens to be a raging kleptomaniac, or your grandmother's bridge partner, or a mime. Check Please follows a series of blind dinner dates that couldn't get any worse—until they do. Could there possibly be a light at the end of the tunnel? Based on a play by Jonathan Rand, CMC's Under the Lights will perform this one-act play in the round.

Directed by Brian Luna '20, the cast includes Diya Courty-Stephens '23 as Pearl & Louis, Sadie Fisher '20 as Melanie, Matthew Hines '22 -as Brandon & Mark, Max Jackman '23 as Tod, Hannah Lak SC '23 as Linda & Mimi, Drew Liptrot PC '22 as Guy, Nandini Mittal '22 as Mary & Sophie, and Alessia Zanobini '23 as Girl. The tech crew includes Amari Huang '23, Grace Soleil Lyde SC' 23.

This special production will be performed on two consecutive nights. Seating is limited to 90 people, in the round, around the stage. 

Friday, November 22, 2019 - 11:45am
Can Russian-American Relations Be Fixed? Lessons from History
Ivan Kurilla
The accusation that Russia seeks to undermine American democracy has captured a lot of attention lately. But according to Ivan Kurilla, professor of international relations at European University in St. Petersburg and author of the book “Frenemies”, this story is not new. There are many examples in the history of this bilateral relationship that reflect a mutual distrust and the suspicion of interference and disrespect of each others values and interests. “Frenemies” for decades, Kurilla will demonstrate how both countries are constantly reinventing images of each other, and mainly using them to fight their domestic battles and to advance a specific political agenda at home.  

Ivan Kurilla, Doctor of Sciences, is professor of international relations at European University in St. Petersburg. Kurilla’s major research area is the history of U.S. – Russian relations; he has also conducted research on the problems in the use of history, historical memory, historical politics, and role of historians in contemporary Russia.

Kurilla has authored five books including most recently History: Past in the Present (EU Press, 2017) and Frenemies: History of Opinions, Fantasies, Contacts, Mutual (Mis)understanding between Russia and the USA (NLO, 2018). He has also published numerous articles in leading Russian and international journals, including Journal of American History, Nationalities Papers, Demokratizatsiya, Journal of the Cold War Studies, and Problems of Post-Communism. 

Professor Kurilla’s Athenaeum presentation is sponsored by the Keck Center for International and Strategic Studies at CMC.

Friday, November 22, 2019 - 5:30pm
Theatre in the Round: CHECK PLEASE
Under the Lights
Dating can be hard. Especially when your date happens to be a raging kleptomaniac, or your grandmother's bridge partner, or a mime. Check Please follows a series of blind dinner dates that couldn't get any worse—until they do. Could there possibly be a light at the end of the tunnel? Based on a play by Jonathan Rand, CMC's Under the Lights will perform this one-act play in the round. 

Directed by Brian Luna '20, the cast includes Diya Courty-Stephens '23 as Pearl & Louis, Sadie Fisher '20 as Melanie, Matthew Hines '22 -as Brandon & Mark, Max Jackman '23 as Tod, Hannah Lak SC '23 as Linda & Mimi, Drew Liptrot PC '22 as Guy, Nandini Mittal '22 as Mary & Sophie, and Alessia Zanobini '23 as Girl. The tech crew includes Amari Huang '23, Grace Soleil Lyde SC' 23.

This special production will be performed on two consecutive nights. Seating is limited to 90 people, in the round, around the stage. 

Monday, December 2, 2019 - 5:30pm
Poetry Reading and Reflections with Forrest Gander
Forrest Gander
Forrest Gander, poet and writer, will read some of his works and share personal reflections.

Forrest Gander is a writer, translator, and editor of several anthologies of writing from Spain and Mexico. Be With, Gander’s most recent collection, won the 2019 Pulitzer Prize in Poetry and was long-listed for the 2018 National Book Award. His 2011 poetry collection Core Samples from the World was a finalist for both the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Critics Circle Award. His other books include two novels, As A Friend and The Trace; the poetry collections Be WithEye Against Eye, Torn Awake, Science & Steepleflower; and the essay collection Faithful Existence: Reading, Memory & Transcendence. Gander’s essays have appeared in The Nation, The Boston Review, and the New York Times Book Review. He is the recipient of fellowships from the Library of Congress, the National Endowment for the Arts, the Guggenheim, Howard, United States Artists, and Whiting Foundations.


Thursday, December 12, 2019 - 5:30pm
Holiday Concert 2019
Claremont Treble Singers; Charles W. Kamm, conductor
The Claremont Treble Singers will perform "A Ceremony of Carols" in which 20th century British composer Benjamin Britten sets medieval and renaissance carols for harp and choir. The Claremont Treble Singers, an ensemble of the Joint Music Program of Claremont McKenna, Harvey Mudd, Pitzer, and Scripps College, is a high-voiced ensemble of about 20 students.  It is led by conductor Charles W. Kamm, associate professor of music at Scripps College and director of choirs for the Joint Music Program.  Harpist Laura Griffin-Casey accompanies the choir.

The Claremont Treble Singers will perform "A Ceremony of Carols" in which 20th century British composer Benjamin Britten sets medieval and renaissance carols for harp and choir. The Claremont Treble Singers, an ensemble of the Joint Music Program of Claremont McKenna, Harvey Mudd, Pitzer, and Scripps College, is a high-voiced ensemble of about 20 students.  It is led by conductor Charles W. Kamm, associate professor of music at Scripps College and director of choirs for the Joint Music Program.  Harpist Laura Griffin-Casey accompanies the choir.

Preceding the concert will be a short performance by elementary school aged children from local schools in partnership with CMC club Music Mania.


Follow the Athenaeum


Unless otherwise noted, lunch begins at 11:45 a.m.; speaker presentations begin at 12:15 p.m.
Evening receptions begin at 5:30 p.m.; dinner is served at 6 p.m.; speaker presentations begin at 6:45 p.m.