History of the Distinguished Lecture Series
The Celebration of Diversity Distinguished Lecture Series was inaugurated in 1988 with a presentation by Dr. Maya Angelou. In succeeding years, the series has hosted Coretta Scott King, former Presidents Clinton and George H. W. Bush, General Colin Powell, Morris Dees, Dr. Cornel West, Toni Morrison, and more.
More than 50,000 people have attended one of our Lecture Series events. The population served includes Butler students, faculty, staff and alumni; area high school and college students; Indianapolis community leaders and residents; and student and faculty groups from other Indiana colleges and universities.
In 2002, the Lecture Series became a Collaborative Diversity Initiative between Butler University and the Office of the Mayor, City of Indianapolis, with generous support from the Eli Lilly and Company Foundation, Anthem Blue Cross–Blue Shield, Citizens Energy, Indianapolis Power & Light Company, Old National Bank, Kroger, Radio One and The Columbia Club. Previous corporate partners included Vectren Corporation, Allison Transmission, Duke Inc., and Comcast.
Every year, Butler University gives Indianapolis a great gift in the form of the Celebration of Diversity Distinguished Lecture Series. The community has heard from former presidents, secretaries of state and many others who have enriched us with their thoughts. We at Butler treasure these events and look forward to the next 25 years of the series.
James M. Danko, President, Butler University