The following speakers represent only a small selection of the broad range of nationally acclaimed artists, authors and lecturers who visited campus and interacted with Whitman students.
According to Terry Tang, deputy editorial page editor for The New York Times, blogs and social media sites actually have a lot in common with grassroots journalism in the early years of the United States. In the 2013 Hosokawa Journalism Lecture, Tang explored the importance of the press in American history and politics and assured the audience of her optimism about the future of print journalism. Tang also hosted a workshop, “The Craft and Career of Journalism,” for student reporters on The Pioneer, Whitman’s award-winning student newspaper.
Eric Asimov, chief wine critic for The New York Times, was entirely in his element when he visited the tasting rooms of Walla Walla. During his visit to campus, he shared his expertise with an eager audience as they tasted local wines and discussed his new book, “How to Love Wine: A Memoir and Manifesto,” which tells the story of his evolution as a wine critic and stresses that enjoying wine is more important than learning how to conduct a proper tasting.
Jonathan Sposato ’89
Entrepreneur and alumnus Jonathan Sposato ’89, who founded technology news site GeekWire and several other technology-focused companies, returned to Whitman to deliver the 2013 William M. Allen-Boeing Lecture. In his presentation titled “Everything I Learned in Business I Learned Owning a Bar,” Sposato shared advice on how to succeed as an entrepreneur. One of the bits of advice he shared was to build a business that appeals to women, because men will follow suit.
Morten Lauridsen ’65
Honorary degree recipient Morten Lauridsen ’65 gave a short presentation on one of his widely popular chorale compositions, “Lux Aeterna,” which contains five movements set to Latin texts about light. Lauridsen, who wrote this composition while his mother was very ill, asked the audience to listen to his work and to reflect upon the loved ones in their lives. Lauridsen has received letters from people all across the country who say listening to it has helped them cope with grief and other powerful emotions. His speech was followed by a performance of “Lux Aeterna” by the Whitman College Chorale.
—Karah Kemmerly ’14