Distinguished Speakers

Marymount’s proximity to our nation’s capital enables the University to bring notable leaders to speak at University-wide lectures, give in-class presentations, talk with students at informal gatherings, or address Commencement ceremonies.

The Most Reverend Desmond Tutu, Archbishop Emeritus of Cape Town, South Africa, General Colin Powell (USA, Ret.), and White House journalist Helen Thomas are among those who have addressed Marymount students.

Distinguished Visiting Professor


The Distinguished Visiting Professor Colloquium Series is a University wide program that brings prominent speakers throughout the academic year to Marymount’s campus.

The primary goal of the Series is to enrich the intellectual life of the academic community. The program provides opportunities for Marymount faculty and students to interact with individuals who have significant influence in a wide array of fields.

Distinguished Visiting Professors offer first-hand insights into the worlds of finance, technology, government, health care, the media, and more. Their presentations enable the members of Marymount’s academic community to become more attuned to the challenges and opportunities prevalent in diverse areas of endeavor. Through the Series, the University’s faculty and students engage in substantive dialogue with leaders who shape and influence our world.

All Distinguished Visiting Professors are listed with their roles at the time of their presentations.

Bill Milliken

School of Education and Human Services Lecturer
Youth Advocate and Founder of Communities in Schools, Inc.

Eileen O’Grady, PhD, RN, NP-BC

Malek School of Health Professions Lecturer
Certified Nurse Practitioner and Wellness Coach

John F. Haught

Senior Fellow, Science and Religion
Woodstock Theological Center, Georgetown University

Stephen J. Suomi

Chief of the Laboratory of Comparative Ethology
National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, National Institutes of Health

David Seiders

Chief Economist and Senior Staff Vice President
National Association of Home Builders

James Axtell

Kenan Professor of Humanities
College of William and Mary

William H. Rauckhorst, Ph.D.

Energy Ethics Expert
Professor of Physics, Miami University (Ohio)

Thomas A. Shippey

Medieval Scholar and Tolkien Expert
Walter J. Ong Chair of Humanities, Saint Louis University

Marybeth Brown

Professor of Physical Therapy
University of Missouri – Columbia

John A. Allison IV

Chairman and CEO
BB&T Corporation

Amitai Etzioni

Institute for Communitarian Policy Studies,
The George Washington University

Rita Colwell

Former Director
National Science Foundation

Vinton G. Cerf

Senior Vice President for Architecture and Technology

John J. McDonnell, Jr.

Chairman and CEO
Transaction Network Services, Inc.

The Honorable William T. Coleman

Senior Partner and the Senior Counselor
O’Melveny and Myers, LLP
Former Secretary, U.S. Department of Transportation

Mario Morino

Chairman, The Morino Institute and Venture Philanthrophy Partners
Special Partner, General Atlantic Partners

Frederick W. Smith

Chairman and Chief Executive Officer
FedEx Corporation

Bishop Joseph M. Sullivan, D.D.

Auxiliary Bishop, Diocese of Brooklyn
Executive Vice President, Board of Trustees
Catholic Charities of Brooklyn

William E. Conway, Jr.

Founding Partner and Managing Director
The Carlyle Group

Joseph E. Robert, Jr.

Chairman and Chief Executive Officer
J.E. Robert Companies

Rajendra Singh

Chairman and Chief Executive Officer
Telcom Ventures, LLC

Cokie Roberts

ABC News Chief Congressional Analyst
Correspondent, This Week with Sam Donaldson and Cokie Roberts

Michael Hegarty

President and Chief Operating Officer
The Equitable Life Assurance Society

Dana Mead

Chairman and CEO

Olza M. Nicely

President and Chief Executive Officer

Rose Marie Bravo


H. Brian Thompson

Chairman and CEO
LCI International, Inc.

Frederic V. Malek

Thayer Capital Partners

Edward D. Miller

Senior Vice Chairman
The Chase Manhattan Corporation

Mark R. Warner

Managing Director
Columbia Capital Corporation

William J. Bennett

Empower America

Barry J. Fitzpatrick

Chairman and CEO
First Virginia Banks, Inc.

The Honorable Jack F. Kemp

Former Secretary, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development

Warren E. Buffett

Chairman and CEO
Berkshire Hathaway, Inc.

John J. Curley

Chairman, President, and CEO
Gannett Company, Inc.

Lawrence T. Babbio, Esq.

President and COO
Bell Atlantic Corporation

Senator J. William Fulbright

Former United States Senator

J. Willard Marriott, Jr.

Chairman and President
Marriott International Corporation, Inc.

Allen E. Murray

Chairman and CEO
Mobil Corporation

Norma T. Pace

President and CEO
Economic Consulting and Planning
Chairman, Board of Governors
U.S. Postal Service

William A. Schreyer

Chairman and CEO
Merrill Lynch & Company

Frank A. Bennack, Jr.

President and CEO
The Hearst Corporation

James O. Edwards

Chairman and CEO
ICF Kaiser International, Inc.

Thomas S. Johnson

Former President
Manufacturers Hanover Corporation

John F. McGillicuddy

Chairman and CEO
Chemical Banking Corporation

Diane Ravitch

Assistant Secretary for Education
U.S. Department of Education

Charles O. Rossotti

Chairman and CEO
American Management Systems

Frederic V. Salerno

Vice Chairman
NYNEX Corporation

Lawrence M. Small

Federal National Mortgage Association

Preston Robert Tisch

Chairman and Co-CEO
Loews Corporation

Celestino Beltran

President and CEO
Comprehensive Technologies International

J. Peter Grace

Chairman and CEO
W.R. Grace and Company

Lawrence A. Kudlow

Senior Managing Director and Chief Economist
The Bear Stearns Company, Inc.

The Honorable Antonia Novello

Surgeon General of the United States

The Honorable Maxwell M. Rabb

Former U.S. Ambassador to Italy

E. John Rosenwald, Jr.

Vice Chairman
The Bear Stearns Company, Inc.

Marymount Ethics Award


The Marymount University Ethics Award recognizes individuals who have made an outstanding contribution to the pursuit and support of ethics in their fields. Recipients are publicly recognized and invited to speak about the importance they attach to fostering ethical value systems.


Sara Ganim

Correspondent for CNN and Pulitzer Prize Winner (2012)
Honored for her courageous work in reporting difficult and unpopular stories in advocacy of the truth.


Sr. Simone Campbell, SSS

Executive Director of NETWORK, a Catholic lobby organization, which, in accordance with the Catholic Social Justice tradition, acts to create a society that promotes justice and the dignity of all in the shared abundance of God’s creation.
Honored for all her work on behalf of the marginalized and oppressed.


Peter Phan, Ph.D.

The Ellacuria Professor of Catholic Social Thought in the Department of Theology at Georgetown University.
Honored for his service to the church and the academy in crossing borders of race, religion, and immigration status.


Bradley Myles
Executive director and CEO of Polaris Project, an organization that combats human trafficking
Honored for his work to bring modern slavery into the light, where it can be eradicated, and survivors can reclaim their lives


Richard E. Grant
MD, professor of Orthopaedic Surgery at Case Western Reserve University Medical School, Cleveland, OH.
Honored for his uncompromising commitment to the ethical practice of medicine, his compassionate service to those in need, and his groundbreaking leadership that has opened doors for underrepresented minorities to pursue careers in orthopaedic surgery.


Sr. Helen Prejean
CSJ, anti-death penalty activist and author, Dead Man Walking: An Eyewitness Account of the Death Penalty in the United States


Carol R. Taylor
RN, MSN, PhD, director of the Georgetown University Center for Clinical Bioethics
Honored for her leadership in health care ethics and her passion to “make health care work.”


Ben Bradlee
Vice president at large for The Washington Post
Honored for his distinguished career of journalistic accomplishment and his commitment to the profession’s highest ethical standards. Throughout his career, Mr. Bradlee has been willing to make tough decisions, based on his conviction that journalists have a duty to find the truth and keep the public informed.


The Most Reverend Desmond Mpilo Tutu
Archbishop Emeritus of Cape Town, South Africa; 1984 Nobel Peace Prize recipient
Honored for his lifelong dedication to human rights and human dignity and his efforts to promote understanding and reconciliation in South Africa and around the world.


Charles H. Epps, Jr.
MD, chief of Orthopaedic Surgery at the Howard University College of Medicine for 24 years
Honored for his uncompromising commitment to the ethical practice of medicine, his compassionate service to those in need, and his ground-breaking leadership that opened doors for African-American physicians


Dr. Edmund D. Pellegrino
Noted bioethicist and professor emeritus of Medicine and Medical Ethics at Georgetown University Medical Center
Honored for his vision and leadership in fostering medical ethics


Sir John M. Templeton
Wall Street legend and philanthropist
Honored for his support of initiatives through the Templeton Foundation that promote spiritual and ethical development


Norman R. Augustine
Former chairman and CEO of Lockheed Martin Corporation
Honored for his commitment to business ethics and development of a ground-breaking corporate ethics program at Lockheed Martin


Marya McLaughlin Lecture Series in Media Communications


Bisson Lecture in the Humanities


The Bisson Lecture in the Humanities was established in 2009 in honor of Professor Lillian Bisson. A scholar of medieval literature, former director of the graduate program in Humanities, and chair of the Department of Literature and Languages, Professor Bisson retired from Marymount University in 2010 after forty-one years of service.

To recognize Professor Bisson’s passion for the humanities as well as her record of scholarship, teaching, and service, the graduate program in Literature, Language, and the Humanities annually invites a distinguished scholar in the humanities to deliver the Bisson Lecture on a topic of humanistic inquiry.

Past Lecturers


Regie Cabico
Filipino-American poet, public storyteller, and prize-winning spoken word artist whose work has been published in many anthologies, including Aloud: Voices from the Nuyorican Poets Café.

Dorsey Armstrong
Professor of English and Medieval Literature at Purdue University, Lecturer for The Great Courses “King Arthur and the Knights of the Public Humanities: Literature in the Classroom, on Guided Tours, and on Screen.”

Brigitte Fielder
Assistant Professor of Comparative Literature, University of Wisconsin-Madison “Antislavery Children’s Literature and Twenty-First Century Antiracism”

Jonathan Deiss
Citizen Archivist, National Archives “Using Your Humanities Skills Outside the Establishment”

Marlene Tromp
Professor of English and Women’s Studies, Dean of the New College of Interdisciplinary Arts and Sciences at Arizona State University “Bloody Murder: Solving Victorian Crimes with Forensics and the Humanities”

Steven Lubar
Professor, American Studies, History, and History of Art and Architecture, Brown University “The Curator Rules”

Peter S. Donaldson
Professor of Literature and Ford Foundation Professor in the Humanities, MIT “Global Shakespeares, Cultural Translation, and the Future of Digital Humanities”

Julie Ellison
Professor of American Culture and English, University of Michigan “Naming the New Public Humanists”

Jesse Alemán
Department of English Language and Literature, University of New Mexico, Albuquerque “Wars of Rebellion: US Hispanic Writings and their American Civil Wars”

Bonnie Wheeler
Department of English, Medieval Studies Program, Southern Methodist University “Humiliation: Reputation Management in the Middle Ages”

Jo Ann H. Moran Cruz
Dean, College of Humanities and Natural Sciences, Loyola University, New Orleans “Reading Dante between the Lines”

The Hubbard Lecture


This lecture series is designed to honor the 50 years of service and commitment Rosemary Hubbard gave to Marymount during her illustrious career as a faculty member. Speakers consist of exemplary alumni of Marymount’s Department of Biology and Physical Sciences programs.
See a complete list of speakers.

The Myhill Lecture


The Myhill lecture is designed to honor the memory of Dr. Elizabeth Myhill, beloved physics professor at Marymount University from 1993-2010. This event, held in conjunction with the Myhill family, recognizes the contributions of women to the fields of physics and astronomy, an area that was important to Dr. Myhill. Past speakers include the following:

Dr. Meredith MacGregor, NSF Astronomy and Astrophysics Post Doctoral Fellow, Department of Terrestrial Magnetism, Carnegie Institution of Washington

Dr. Eleonora Troja, Associate Research Scientist, Department of Astronomy, University of Maryland & NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Astrophysics Science Division

Dr. Heather Archambault, Modeling, Analysis, Predictions, and Projections (MAPP) Program Manager, NOAA Climate Program Office

Dr. Amy Simon, Senior Scientist for Planetary Atmospheres, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center

Dr. Jocelyne DiRuggiero, Associate Research Professor, Department of Biology and Department of Earth and Planetary Science, Johns Hopkins University

Dr. Bethany Johns, Assistant Director of Research Policy at Associate of Public and Land Grant Universities & American Institute of Physics

Dr. Lori Glaze, Planetary Science Division Directory, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center

Dr. Alycia Weinberger, Staff Scientist, Department of Terrestrial Magnetism, Carnegie Institution of Washington

Visiting Author Series


The Visiting Author Series was established in 2011 in partnership with the Arlington County Public Library’s Arlington Reads initiative. The series is part of the first-year composition program housed in the Department of Literature and Languages. The featured author and his/her works are incorporated into the program curriculum each spring.
Valeria Luiselli (2020)
Los Angeles Times Book Prize and American Book Award winner, author of Tell Me How It Ends: An Essay in Forty Questions

Mary Karr (2019)
New York Times bestseller and PEN/Martha Albrand Award-winning memoir, The Liar’s Club 

Katherine Boo (2018)
National Book Award for Nonfiction and Los Angeles Times Book Prize, Behind the Beautiful Forevers: Life, Death, and Hope in a Mumbai Undercity

Elizabeth Strout (2017)
Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, Olive Kitteridge 

Julie Otsuka (2016)
American Library Association’s Alex Award and the Asian American Literary Award, When the Emperor Was Divine 

Jesmyn Ward (2015)
Two-time National Book Award winner, author of Men We Reaped

Richard Ford (2014)
Pulitzer Prize-winning author of The Sportswriter

Junot Diaz (2013)
Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao

Jennifer Egan (2012)
Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, A Visit from the Goon Squad

Tim O’Brien (2011)
National Book Award Winner for his collection of stories, The Things They Carried