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Distinguished Lecture Series

In partnership with the Institute for Advancing American Values, the Honors College sponsors and presents Boise State University’s Distinguished Lecture Series. Twice a year, the Series brings eminent speakers to Boise State from the realm of politics, academics, and humanitarian activism to promote the discussion of important issues.

Previous Speakers

  • Danielle Allen

    James Bryant Conant University Professor at Harvard University

  • Jason Riley

    Jason Riley

    Wall Street Journal Columnist

  • portrait of HR McMaster

    H.R. McMaster

    Former Assistant to the President for National Security Affairs

  • Ta-Nehisi Coates

    Best-selling author, recipient of a MacArthur Fellowship, and writer in residence at NYU’s Arthur L. Carter Journalism Institute

  • Nikole Hannah-Jones

    Nikole Hannah-Jones

    American investigative journalist known for her coverage of civil rights in the United States

  • Antony J. Blinken

    Antony J. Blinken

    Former Deputy Secretary of State

  • Werner Herzog

    Werner Herzog

    Award-winning screenwriter, film director, author, and actor

  • Azar Nafisi

    Azar Nafisi

    Iranian-American bestselling author

    September 25, 2017
  • Sarah Lewis

    Sarah Lewis

    Bestselling Author and Assistant Professor at Harvard University

    April 17, 2017
  • David Brooks

    David Brooks

    Political analyst and columnist for The New York Times

    September 27, 2016
  • Carl Wieman

    Carl Wieman

    Nobel Prize-Winning Physicist and Professor of the Graduate School of Education at Stanford University

    April 14, 2016
  • Julia Gillard

    Former Prime Minister of Australia, Minister for Education, Employment and Workplace Relations and Social Inclusion, public speaker, and member of the United Nations Security Council

    October 5, 2015
  • Margaret Atwood

    Margaret Atwood

    Literary influence, Booker Prize winner, and distinguished author of poetry, children’s literature, fiction, and non-fiction

    April 8, 2015
  • Sir Salman Rushdie

    Sir Salman Rushdie

    Distinguished author, public intellectual, and free-speech proponent

    Nov. 20, 2014
  • Richard Heinz

    Richard Heinzl

    Founder of the first North American chapter of Doctors Without Borders

    April 8, 2014
  • Jonathan Spence

    The world’s foremost authority on Chinese civilization and the role of history in shaping modern China

    October 3, 2013
  • Louis Menand

    Pulitzer Prize-winning author and scholar of American studies

    April 18, 2013
  • Steven Pinker

    Cognitive scientist one of the world’s foremost writers on language, mind and human nature

    October 4, 2012
  • Susan Solomon

    Climate scientist internationally recognized as a leader in atmospheric science, 2007 Nobel Laureate, and Professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology

    March 6, 2012
  • Raj Patel

    Award-winning writer, food activist and academic

    October 6, 2011
  • Martha Nussbaum

    Philosopher and author of Fragility of Goodness and Cultivating Humanity: A Classic Defense of Reform in Liberal Education

    March 10, 2011
  • Jody Williams

    Humanitarian and Nobel Laureate

    December 1, 2010
  • Steve Fainaru

    Winner of the 2008 Pulitzer Prize for international reporting and author of Big Boy Rules: America’s Mercenaries Fighting in Iraq

    February 16, 2010
  • William McDonough

    Internationally renowned designer and one of the primary proponents and shapers of what he and his partners call “The Next Industrial Revolution”

    April 16, 2008
  • Louis Sullivan

    Former secretary of health and human services under President George H.W. Bush

    October 16, 2007
  • Hans Blix

    Former chief UN weapons inspector in Iraq and author of Disarming Iraq

    March 12, 2007
  • Jonathan Kozol

    Public education advocate, author and winner of the National Book Award for Death at an Early Age

    October 10, 2006
  • Joseph Stiglitz

    Winner of the 2001 Nobel Prize in Economics and bestselling author of Globalization and Its Discontents

    April 12, 2006
  • Seymour Hersh

    Investigative reporter who won the Pulitzer Prize for exposing the My Lai Massacre in Vietnam. He is the author of Chain of Command: The Road from 9/11 to Abu Ghraib and other books

    February 13, 2006
  • Karen Armstrong

    Religion scholar and author who wrote A History of God, The Battle for God, the memoir The Spiral Staircase and a number of other well-received books

    October 4, 2005
  • Christopher Hogwood

    Internationally acclaimed conductor and musicologist

    March 15, 2005
  • E.O. Wilson

    World-renowned biologist and two-time winner of the Pulitzer Prize

    April 14, 2004
  • Mary Robinson

    President of Ireland from 1990-1997 and U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights from 1997-2002

    October 19, 2004
  • Michael Cunningham

    Author who won the Pulitzer Prize and the PEN/Faulkner Award for The Hours

    October 9, 2003
  • Lech Walesa

    Former president of Poland and winner of the 1983 Nobel Prize for Peace

    October 2, 2002
  • Horst Stormer

    Winner of the 1998 Nobel Prize in Physics

    April 25, 2002
  • Jose Ramos-Horta

    Winner of the 1996 Nobel Prize for Peace for “his sustained efforts to hinder the oppression of a small people” in his homeland of East Timor

    October 9, 2001
  • Terry Waite

    Humanitarian and hostage negotiator

    April 10, 2001