Wilkes University

Max Rosenn Lecture Series in Law and Humanities

Max Rosenn Lecture Series in Law and Humanities

The Max Rosenn Lecture in Law and Humanities was established at Wilkes University in 1980 in recognition of Judge Rosenn’s exceptional contributions to public service. It has brought speakers with expertise in diverse fields and interests, including Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Bryan Stevenson, Anna Deavere Smith, Anthony Lewis, Cory Booker and Bob Woodward.

Upcoming Lecture

All I Did Was Ask: An Afternoon With Terry Gross

Host of NPR’s Fresh Air
3 p.m. Sunday, April 25

Terry Gross

Photo by Jessica Kourkounis

The interview-style discussion, “All I Did Was Ask: An Afternoon With Terry Gross,” will offer a behind-the-mic glimpse of her innovative and hugely popular public radio show, Fresh Air. Recounting stories of extremely successful interviews as well as relating entertaining tales of particularly disastrous interviews, Gross will share a side of herself that her listeners rarely get to hear.

Visit this page at 3 p.m. Sunday, April 25, to view the free, public presentation. For additional information, contact Rebecca Van Jura at 570-408-4306 or rebecca.vanjura@wilkes.edu.

Gross, who has been host of Fresh Air since 1975, when it was broadcast only in Greater Philadelphia, is not afraid to ask tough questions. But she sets an atmosphere in which her guests volunteer the answers rather than surrendering them. The San Francisco Chronicle calls the unique approach, “a remarkable blend of empathy and warmth, genuine curiosity and sharp intelligence.” Fresh Air is broadcast on nearly 600 stations and became the first non-drive-time show in public radio history to reach more than 5 million listeners a week. The broadcast went on to win the Peabody Award in 1994 for its “probing questions, revelatory interviews and unusual insight.

Gross began her radio career in 1973 at public radio station WBFO in Buffalo, N.Y., where she hosted and produced several arts, women’s and public affairs programs. Two years later, she joined the staff of WHYY-FM in Philadelphia as producer and host of Fresh Air, then a local, daily interview and music program. In 1985, WHYY-FM launched a weekly half-hour edition of Fresh Air with Terry Gross, which was distributed nationally by NPR. Since 1987, a daily, one-hour national edition of Fresh Air has been produced by WHYY-FM. 

Fresh Air with Terry Gross has received various awards, including the Gracie Award by the America Women in Radio and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting’s Edward R. Murrow Award. In 2010 she became the fourth recipient of the Modern Language Association’s Phyllis Franklin Award for Public Advocacy of the Humanities. In 2011, she received the Authors Guild Award for Distinguished Service to the Literary Community. In 2015, she was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and received the 2015 National Humanities Medal from the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Gross is the author of All I Did Was Ask: Conversations with Writers, Actors, Musicians and Artists, published by Hyperion in 2004. Born and raised in Brooklyn, N.Y., she received a bachelor’s degree in English and master of education degree in communications from the State University of New York at Buffalo. Her alma mater awarded her a Distinguished Alumni Award in 1993 and an honorary degree in 2007. She’s also received honorary degrees from Princeton University, Haverford College and Drexel University. She gave the commencement address at Vassar College in 2007 and Bryn Mawr College in 2014.

The Max Rosenn Lecture in Law and Humanities was established at Wilkes University in 1980 in recognition of Judge Rosenn’s exceptional contributions to public service. It was established by his former law clerks, his law firm, Rosenn, Jenkins & Greenwald, family and friends. Past speakers include Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Bryan Stevenson, Anna Deavere Smith, Anthony Lewis, Cory Booker and Bob Woodward.


About the Rosen Lecture Series

The Honorable Max Rosenn, Senior Judge United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit

Judge Max Rosenn’s long career as a public servant spanned many fields, including law, philanthropy, public welfare, health and religion. He made innumerable contributions to the enhancement of northeastern Pennsylvania, to state government, and to the federal judiciary. Following the Hurricane Agnes Disaster of 1972, he played a vital role in the rehabilitation of Greater Wilkes-Barre and its many neighboring communities as chairman of the Flood Recovery Task Force for Wyoming Valley.

After receiving an undergraduate degree from Cornell University and a law degree from the University of Pennsylvania, Judge Rosenn commenced his legal career. He interrupted that career to enter military service in World War II. After several years in the South Pacific, he returned to his wife and sons and resumed the practice of law. He entered state government in 1966 as secretary of public welfare for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. As secretary, Judge Rosenn also served as a member of the cabinet of Governor William W. Scranton and in the cabinet of his successor, Raymond Shafer, and as chairman of the Governor’s Council for Human Services. Following his resignation as Secretary and resumption of the practice of law, he served as chairman of the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission and chairman of the Legislative Executive Task Force to Restructure Human Services for Pennsylvania. He also served as a member of the 1968 Governor’s Commission to Revise the Public Employee Laws of Pennsylvania. President Nixon appointed him to the United States Court of Appeals in 1970.

He and wife, Tillie, were lifetime residents of the Wyoming Valley, have two sons, Professor Keith and Dr. Daniel, and six grandchildren.

In recognition of his exceptional contributions and his warm relationship with them, Judge Rosenn’s former law clerks and former law firm Rosenn, Jenkins & Greenwald, with the assistance of his family and friends, established in 1980 the Max Rosenn Lecture Series in Law and Humanities.

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar
Cancer Survivor & All-time Leading Scorer in NBA history.
Anna Deavere Smith
Playwright, actor, and professor
Ron Prosor
Abba Eban Chair of International Diplomacy at the Interdisciplinary Center Herzliya (IDC)
Anthony Lewis
Columnist, New York Times
Edwin Newman
Correspondent, 
NBC News
Joseph J. Sisco
Former Undersecretary of State
in Political Affairs
Richard Schifter
Former U.S. Ambassador
to United Nations
Henry Steele Commager
Historian, Professor of Law, 
Amherst College
Bettina Gregory
Senior Correspondent
ABC
Malcolm Toon
Former U.S. Ambassador to the Soviet Union
Nina Totenberg
Legal Affairs Correspondent
National Public Radio
Ambler Moss
Dean, School of International Studies, University of Miami
John Paul Stevens
JusticeU.S. Supreme Court
T. Berry Brazelton, M.D.
Author, Educator, Renowned Pediatrician
Leslie H. Gelb, Ph.D.
Author, Journalist,
New York Times Columnist
Tom J. Farer, J.D.
Director, International Relations Program
American University
Doris Kearns Goodwin, Ph.D.
Author, Historian,
Political Analyst
Honorable A. Leon Higginbotham, Jr.
Chief Judge Emeritus,
United States Court of Appeals
Paul Simon
Retired United States Senator
Morris S. Dees, Jr.
Chief Trial Counsel, 
Southern Poverty Law Center
Abner J. Mikva
Distinguished Visiting Professor of Law and Senior Fellow, IGPA University of Illinois
David Halberstam
Author, Journalist, and Historian
Norman Mailer 
Novelist, 
Biographer,and  Historian
Fareed Zakaria
Editor
Newsweek International
Robin Wright
Author and Chief diplomatic correspondent
for The Los Angeles Times 
Amy Chua
Author
Yale Law School Professor
Irshad Manji
Award-winning journalist
Author
Bob Woodward
Assistant Managing Editor of
The Washington Post
Christopher Dillon Quinn
Award winning documentary film director
John Bul Dau
one of The Lost Boys of Sudan
featured in the film God Grew Tired of Us
Richard Leakey
Paleoanthropologist, 
Conservationist, Activist
Zanny Minton-Beddoes
Economics Editor
The Economist
Greg Mortenson
Best-selling author and humanitarian
Co-author Three Cups of Tea
Michelle Rhee
Founder and CEO of StudentsFIrst
Cory Booker
Mayor - Newark, New Jersey
Noah Feldman
Bemis Professor - Harvard University
Richard Lugar
Retired United States Senator
Brian Greene
String Theorist
Author of "The Elegant Universe"
Anthony Lewis
Columnist, New York Times
Senator Paul Simon
Retired United States Senator, Illinois
Edwin Newman
Correspondent,
NBC News
Morris S. Dees, Jr.
Chief Trial Counsel,
Southern Poverty Law Center
Joseph J. Sisco
Former Undersecretary of State
in Political Affairs
Abner J. Mikva
Distinguished Visiting Professor of Law and Senior Fellow, IGPA University of Illinois
Richard Schifter
Former U.S. Ambassador
to United Nations

David Halberstam
Author, Journalist, Historian

Henry Steele Commager
Historian, Professor of Law,
Amherst College
Norman Mailer Novelist,
Biographer
Historian
Bettina Gregory
Senior Correspondent
ABC
Fareed Zakaria
Editor
Newsweek International
Malcolm Toon
Former U.S. Ambassador to the Soviet Union
Robin Wright
Author and Chief diplomatic correspondent
for The Los Angeles Times
Nina Totenberg
Legal Affairs Correspondent
National Public Radio
Amy Chua
Author
Yale Law School Professor
Ambler Moss
Dean, School of International Studies, University of Miami
Irshad Manji
Award-winning journalist
Author
John Paul Stevens
Justice
U.S. Supreme Court
Bob Woodward
Assistant Managing Editor of
The Washington Post
T. Berry Brazelton, M.D.
Author, Educator, Renowned Pediatrician
Christopher Dillon Quinn
Award winning documentary film director
Leslie H. Gelb, Ph.D.
Author, Journalist,
New York Times Columnist
John Bul Dau
one of The Lost Boys of Sudan
featured in the film God Grew Tired of Us
Tom J. Farer, J.D.
Director, International Relations Program
American University
Richard Leakey
Paleoanthropologist,
Conservationist, Activist
Doris Kearns Goodwin, Ph.D.
Author, Historian,
Political Analyst
Zanny Minton-Beddoes
Economics Editor
The Economist
Honorable A. Leon Higginbotham, Jr.
Chief Judge Emeritus,
United States Court of Appeals
 

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