Human Behavior, National Security, the Arts Explored in 2006-07 Lawrence University Convocation Series

An award-winning researcher on stress, an expert on national security strategy, a theatre executive and an acclaimed social commentator will join Lawrence University President Jill Beck on the college’s 2006-07 convocation series.

Beck will kick off the series Thursday, Sept. 21 with her annual matriculation address, officially opening the college’s 157th academic year. All convocations are held in the Lawrence Memorial Chapel beginning at 11:10 a.m. and are free and open to the public.

Robert Sapolsky, a biologist, neuroscientist, nature writer and Stanford University professor will speak Tuesday, Nov. 7. Since graduating from Harvard in the mid-1970s, Sapolsky has divided his time between field work in Kenya, where he has lived with a group of baboons and highly technical neurological research in the laboratory. His expertise spans pecking orders in primate societies — human as well as baboon — as well as understanding how neurotransmitters function under stress. He is the author of several well-received books, including “A Primate’s Memoir,” which details his more than 20 years’ work as a field biologist, “Why Zebras Don’t Get Ulcers,” a primer on stress and stress-related disease and “The Trouble with Testosterone,” a collection of provocative essays on relationships between biology and human behavior.

Juliette Kayyem, a specialist on counterterrorism, homeland security and law enforcement, visits the campus Tuesday, Feb. 6. A lecturer in public policy at Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government, Kayyem spent two years as a congressional appointment on the National Commission on Terrorism, a federally-mandated review of how the government could better prepare for growing terrorist threats. She previously served as a legal advisor to former Attorney General Janet Reno, focusing on a variety of national security and terrorism cases. She is the co-author of the 2005 book “Preserving Liberty in an Age of Terror” and the co-editor of 2003’s “First to Arrive: State and Local Response to Terrorism.” Kayyem serves as a national security analyst for NBC News.

Ted Chapin, president and executive director of New York City’s Rodgers & Hammerstein Organization, will speak Tuesday, April 17. Chapin, who attended Lawrence in the early 1970s, oversees all the divisions within R&H, including Williamson Music, the Irving Berlin Music Company, R&H Theatricals and the R&H Concert Library. As a 20-year-old college student, Chapin served as a “go-fer” on the set of the Stephen Sondheim Broadway musical “Follies.” He kept a diary of his experiences as an insider and 30 years later used that diary as the basis for the book “Everything Was Possible: The Birth of the Musical ‘Follies.’” He has served as chairman of the Advisory Committee for New York City Center’s “Encores! Great American Musicals in Concert” series since its inception and is currently a member of the Tony Administration Committee.

Author and social commentator Susan Faludi will be featured at the annual honors convocation on Tuesday, May 22. The recipient of a Pulitzer Prize in 1991 while working as a reporter for The Wall Street Journal, Faludi earned national attention for the best-selling book “Backlash: The Undeclared War Against American Women,” which examined the attacks endured by women in the wake of the feminist movement of the 1970s. The book earned Faludi the 1992 National Book Critics Circle Award. In 1991, she followed up with an analysis of the forces that shape the lives and attitudes of men in another ground-breaking book, “Stiffed: The Betrayal of the American Man.”