University Forum Lecture Series previous speakers

The University Forum Committee (UFC) is responsible for bringing external speakers to the campus of Appalachian State University and is one of the university’s longest-running such series. Here are some of the speakers who have visited.

Spring 2022

  • LaTosha Brown - “Who Will Save American Democracy? The Role of Women, Young Voters and People of Color in American Politics”

Fall 2022

  • Dr. Annette Gordon-Reed - “On Juneteenth”

Spring 2021

  • Dr. Spoma Jovanovic - “Finding Expression in Contested Public Spaces” `
  • “Trail Magic: The Grandma Gatewood Story,” The first woman to hike the Appalachian Trail

Spring 2019-2020 - (Series canceled due to COVID Pandemic)

  • Bette Lou Higgins - “Madam President: The Story of Victoria Woodhull”
  • Bette Lou Higgins - “Trail Magic: The Grandma Gatewood Story”
  • Film - “Suffragette”
  • Shatema Threadcraft - “Redistributing Narrative Capital: Lynching, Rape and Stories of Black Peoplehood”

Fall 2019

  • Heather Booth - film "Changing the World"
  • Wendy Rouse - "Women's Suffrage, Self-Defense, and the Struggle for Equality in the Progressive Era"
  • Safiya Noble - "Algorithms of Oppression: How Search Engines Reinforce Racism"
  • Celeste Montoya - "From Seneca to Shelby: Intersectionality and Women's Voting Rights"
  • Janet Jakobsen - "Sex and Suffrage: A Politics of Possibility"


  • Reverend Jesse Louis Jackson, Sr. - "With Justice for All: Human Rights at Home and Abroad"


  • Nicholas Kristof - "Why Students Should Care About the World & Change It"


  • David Pogue - "America and Science: The Path to Success in the Unrecognizable New World of Tech and Culture"


  • Carl Zimmer - "A Journey to the Center of Your Brain"
  • Mae Jemison - "Exploring the Frontiers of Science and Human Potential"


  • Morris Dees - "With Justice for All"
  • Timothy DeChristopher - "A Movement with Soul"
  • Mary Frances Berry - "Whatever Happened to the Civil Rights Movement?"


Co-sponsored by the Multicultural Center as part of the university's celebration of Martin Luther King Day

  • Andrew Solomon - "Far From the Tree: Parents, Children & and the Search for Identity"
  • Soledad O'Brien - "An Evening with Soledad O'Brien"


Joint Sponsorship with the Morgan Lectures in the Sciences

  • Michael Mann - "The Hockey Stick and the Climate Wars"
  • Harold McGee - "The Chemistry of Food and Cooking"


Theme: Borders and Bridges: What Divides Us, What Unites Us

  • Reza Aslan - "Understanding Muslims and the Future of the New Middle East"
  • Barbara Martinez Jitner - "On the Border of a New America: Wall of Shadows"


  • Peter Bergen - "Osama’s War: Global Terrorism and the Urgency for a Stable Afghanistan"
  • Harold Holzer - "Why Lincoln Matters–To History, To Our Presidents, and Us"
  • Edward Larson - "The Scopes Trial in History and the Theater"

Theme: The Darwin Bicentennial Celebration Continued

  • Michael Ruse - "Darwin at Two Hundred Years Old: Does He Still Speak to Us?"
  • James Costa - "Charles Darwin and the Origin of the Origin"
  • Sean Carroll - "Into the Jungle: The Epic Search for the Origins of Species and the Discoveries that Forged a Revolution"
  • Paul Ewald - "Darwinian Insights into the Causes and Prevention of Cancer"
  • Jonathan Weiner - "The Beak of the Finch: A Story of Evolution in Our Time"
  • Elisabeth Lloyd - "Darwinian Evolution and the Female Orgasm: Explanations and Puzzles"
  • Niles Eldredge - "Darwin, the Beagle, and the Origin of Modern Evolutionary Biology"


Theme: The Darwin Bicentennial Celebration

  • Eugenie Scott - "Why Darwin Matters"
  • Jay Hosler - "Comic Books, Darwin and the “E” Word"
  • John Haught - "Evolution and Faith: What is at Stake?"
  • Ken Miller - "Is Evolution “Only a Theory?”: Charles Darwin and the Design of Life"
  • Janet Browne - "Commemorating Darwin: 1809-2008: A History of Prior Darwin Celebrations"


  • Gloria Steinem - "The Progression of Feminism"