UNCP announces 2005-06 Distinguished Speaker Series


The 2005-06 Distinguished Speaker Series at The University of North Carolina at Pembroke will keep its students and the regional audience on the cutting edge of current events, politics, culture and sports.

Four of the nation’s leading public speakers are scheduled to take the microphone at UNCP’s Givens Performing Arts Center.

Catherine CrierCatherine Crier – Tuesday, September 27, 2005

As the host of Court TV’s Catherine Crier Live, Crier offers insight, commentary and analysis with the nation's principal lawmakers and influential professionals on front-page legal news and current issues. Crier is author of “The Case Against Lawyers: How the Lawyers, Politicians, and Bureaucrats have turned the Law into an Instrument of Tyranny,” and the newly published, “A Deadly Game (March 2005). Previously, she hosted The Crier Report, on the FOX Network, was a news correspondent for ABC’s World News Tonight and 20/20 and a news anchor for CNN. Before her meteoric rise, she was the youngest elected judge in Texas history when she took the bench in 1984.

Nicholas SparksNicholas Sparks - Monday, October 17, 2005

A best selling author, Nicholas Sparks is a former real estate appraiser, waiter, salesman and business owner. At 28, his career path took a turn when he wrote “The Notebook.” It was published in 1996 by Warner Books. He followed it with “Message in a Bottle” (1998), “A Walk to Remember” (1999), “The Rescue” (2000), “A Bend in the Road” (2001), “Nights in Rodanthe” (2002), “The Guardian” (2003), “The Wedding” (2003), “Three Weeks with my Brother” (2004) and his newest work, “True Believer” (2005). All are international best sellers and translated into more than 35 languages. The movie version of “Message in a Bottle” was released in 1999 followed by “A Walk to Remember” in 2002 and “The Notebook” in 2004.

Sparks’ life includes tragedy - the loss of his mother to a horse accident at the age of 47, his dad to an automobile accident at the age of 54 and his sister at the age of 33 to cancer; triumph - high school valedictorian, track star at Notre Dame University and millionaire author; love - his first purchase after his first million dollar book contract was a new wedding ring for his wife followed by a proposal to renew their vows. Sparks promises to be an intriguing addition to the series.

Tavis SmileyTavis Smiley - Saturday, February 11, 2006

Time magazine selected political activist and media superstar Tavis Smiley as one of America’s 50 most promising young leaders. Newsweek profiled him as one of the “20 people changing how Americans get their news” and dubbed him one of the nation’s “captains of the airwaves.” With his late night television talk show, Tavis Smiley, on PBS and his radio show, The Tavis Smiley Show from NPR, Smiley was the first American ever to simultaneously host signature talk shows on both public TV and radio. Smiley’s television show continues in its second season, and he just announced the return of The Tavis Smiley Show to public radio in association with Public Radio International (PRI) beginning April 29. Smiley, who started his career as an aide to the late Los Angeles mayor Tom Bradley, also offers political commentary twice weekly on the Tom Joyner Morning Show. In addition, he has authored eight books and has his own imprint (Smiley Books) with Hay House. The Philadelphia Inquirer says Smiley is “one of the most important political voices of his generation.”

Roy FirestoneRoy Firestone - Tuesday, March 28, 2006

The winner of six Emmy Awards and two Cable Ace awards, Firestone has interviewed nearly every major sports figure today, and has appeared on numerous television shows including Late Night with David Letterman, The Simpsons and Everybody Loves Raymond. Firestone can also be seen on Fox’s Beyond the Glory and Face to Face with Roy Firestone on HDNet. His interviews with noted sports celebrities are frequently re-broadcast on ESPN Classic. Through songs, multimedia presentations and compelling stories drawn from the lives of the popular figures he has covered, Firestone provides audiences with “motivetainment” – showing them how to achieve success and keep pushing forward to reach their own goals, while keeping them uplifted and entertained.

“We are excited about the line up for our 2005-2006 Distinguished Speaker Series,” said UNCP Chancellor Allen C. Meadors. “This series brings another exciting group of individuals to the University and the region who will provoke intellectual exchanges and broaden our perspectives. We hope that our regional community will join our students, faculty and staff in taking the opportunity to hear what these individuals have to say.”

All performances will be in the Givens Performing Arts Center of UNC Pembroke. Presentations begin at 7 p.m. and tickets are $10 per person. Please contact Abdul Ghaffar at the Office of Student Activities for more information. Contact: 910.521.6207 or abdul.ghaffar@uncp.edu.