Colorado State University - Pueblo Spring Distinguished Speaker Series line-up announced

Colorado State University - Pueblo Spring Distinguished Speaker Series line-up announced

PUEBLO – The 2010-2011 Distinguished Speakers Series at Colorado State University-Pueblo will return in February with a former WWE wrestler, the former Mayor of New Orleans, and participants in the famous Brown vs. Board of Education lawsuit. The series will conclude in March with the daughter of former presidential candidate and current Arizona Senator John McCain.  All events are free and open to the public.

The  Distinguished Speakers Series features eminent national or international speakers who contribute to current thought in social or political activities, in the arts and sciences, or other realm of contemporary significance. The series is an opportunity to learn from scholars, politicians, and business people, who can inspire students and community members to think critically about current issues, trends, events, knowledge, diversity, and leadership. Events will be co-sponsored by the Office of Student Activities, Student Fee Governing Board, Associated Students’ Government, and the Division of Student Affairs.

 FEBRUARY 2

Chris Nowinski, Head Games: Football’s Concussion Crisis, 7 p.m., Occhiato University Ballroom

Chris Nowinski’sChris Nowinski’s book, Head Games: Football’s Concussion Crisis and subsequent advocacy work forced the NFL to change how the game is played and how athletes are medically treated, and later his former employer, World wrestling entertainment (WWE), followed suit. Nowinski is best known as the former WWE professional wrestler who turned his legitimate background as an All-Ivy Harvard football player into one of the most entertaining and hated characters on television . He debuted on WWE's flagship program Monday Night RAW in 2002, when he was named "Newcomer of the Year" by RAW Magazine, and was the youngest male Hardcore Champion in WWE history before his career was ended in 2003 by a concussion. Diagnosed with a little understood disorder called post-concussion syndrome, Chris began a quest to better understand this condition. The information and story he uncovered has changed how concussions are treated in sports and beyond forever. His book, Head Games: Football’s Concussion Crisis and subsequent advocacy work forced the NFL to change how the game is played and how athletes are medically treated, and later his former employer, WWE, followed suit.

FEBRUARY 9

Ray NaginRay Nagin, New Orleans Revival: Rainbow After the Storm, 7 p.m., OUC Ballroom

In this remarkably moving presentation, Mayor Ray Nagin shares the story of post-Katrina New Orleans and its recovery from disaster. A lyrical, engaging speaker, Nagin takes audiences on a front-row journey through the setbacks and triumphs that, five years after the hurricane, have made the city stronger than ever. Now a leader in green construction and innovative education, and one of the fastest-growing cities in America, New Orleans is a model of hope and progress. Emphasizing the importance of cooperation and civic engagement at all levels, Nagin demonstrates that it is possible to recover from disaster, and that there is a rainbow after every storm.  Today, New Orleans is in the midst of a booming recovery, and one man in who has never waned in his commitment to the city's revitalization.

Within 30 days of the disaster, he developed the Bring New Orleans Back Commission, a master plan for the city’s revival. Today, New Orleans has the fastest growing population in America, is the focus of more green construction than any American city, has one of the nation’s lowest unemployment rates, and a thriving public education system. The story of New Orleans’ revival is not about one city or one leader, but the story of the American spirit and surmounting adversity.

FEBRUARY 16

Cheryl Brown and John Stokes, Students on Strike, 7 p.m., OUC Ballroom

The Brown sistersCheryl is one of three daughters of the late Rev. Oliver L. Brown, who, along with 12 other parents led by the NAACP, filed suit against the local Board of Education on behalf of their children in the historic case, Oliver L. Brown et. al. vs. the Board of Education of Topeka, et. al. Upon appeal to the United States Supreme Court, the case became the lead among five other legal challenges; Oliver Brown died in 1961 before knowing the impact of this landmark US Supreme Court decision.

Cheryl has been a sixth grade teacher, university guest lecturer, school guidance counselor, state educational administrator and is currently President and CEO of The Brown Foundation. She has been a member of numerous professional and civic organizations, and presently serves on several local, state and national boards. She is past chair of Women Work, a national network that represented some 15 million women nationwide who were seeking career assistance and employment in non-traditional fields. Cheryl established The Brown Foundation in 1988 along with her co-worker, Jerry Jones. In 1990 the Foundation worked with the United States Congress to develop legislation, resulting in the establishment of the Brown v. Board of Education National Park. The Park opened in 2004 in conjunction with the 50th anniversary of the Brown decision. It is located in Topeka at the site of one of the four formerly segregated African American schools. This was also the elementary school attended by their mother, two of the Brown sisters, Linda and Terry, and the school at which Cheryl began her teaching career.

On April 23, 1951, John A.Stokes helped to organize, strategize, plan and lead a student strike for better conditions at Robert Russa Moton High School in Farmville, Virginia, a strike that made Stokes a plaintiff in the landmark civil rights case Brown v. Board of Education and helped change life in the US forever.

While serving as an educator in Baltimore, Stokes received many awards from the mayor, governor and others due to his ability to bring the inner city students' achievement levels far above the norm. Many of these students ended up becoming doctors, lawyers, teachers, and productive citizens.

MARCH 2, Meghan McCain, Redefining Republican: No Labels. No Boxes. No Stereotypes,

7 p.m., Hoag Recital Hall

Meghan McCainThe McCains are one of the most well-known Republican families in recent history, and Meghan McCain came to prominence as the straight-talking, forward-thinking daughter of the 2008 Republican presidential candidate Senator John McCain. Her profile has only risen since the election ended in favor of the other guy. As a new role model for young, creative, and vocal members of the GOP, she’s unafraid to mix it up and speak her mind. In Dirty Sexy Politics, she takes a hard look at the future of her party and gives us a true insider's account of life on a campaign trail. She steals campaign signs in New Hampshire, tastes the nightlife in Nashville, and has a strange encounter with Laura and Jenna Bush at the White House. Along the way, she falls in love with America—while seeing how far the Republican Party has veered from its core values of freedom, honesty, and individuality.