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Emerson readies for Pelton inauguration

Emerson College is preparing to inaugurate the College’s 12th president, Lee Pelton, with a series of celebratory events next week.

Lee Pelton is the 12th president of Emerson College.

Actor and playwright Anna Deavere Smith and Columbia University Professor of American Studies and Julian Clarence Levi Professor in the Humanities Andrew Delbanco will be the featured speakers during the celebration.Other scheduled events include a faculty symposium, a ProArts Consortium presidents symposium, and a student and faculty showcase. The celebration culminates in an installation ceremony on Friday, September 14, 2012, at 11:30 am.

Pelton took office at Emerson on July 1, 2011, after serving for 13 years as president of Willamette University in Salem, Oregon. Before Willamette, he served as dean of the college at Colgate University and at Dartmouth College. He is a magna cum laude graduate of Wichita State University and holds a PhD in English from Harvard University, where he taught and served as senior tutor at Winthrop House.


The schedule of inaugural event follows:

Wednesday, September 12
The Students of Emerson College Present: The Pride of the Pack Inauguration Kick Off 7:00 pm, Bill Bordy Theater & Auditorium, 216 Tremont St. A reception will follow at 8:00 pm.


Thursday, September 13
ProArts Presidents Symposium 10:00 am, Semel Theater, Tufte Building, 10 Boylston Place President Pelton will moderate a discussion with the presidents of the six institutions that constitute the ProArts Consortium about college, culture and the city of Boston.

  • President Roger H. Brown, Berklee College of Music
  • President Ted Landsmark, The Boston Architectural College
  • President Richard Ortner, The Boston Conservatory
  • President Dawn Barrett, Massachusetts College of Art and Design
  • President Chris Bratton, School of the Museum of Fine Arts

Faculty Symposium: Arts and Communication: Seeking Common Ground 2:00 pm, Paramount Mainstage, 559 Washington St.
Moderator: Associate Professor, Eric Gordon, Emerson College

  • David Weinberger, Harvard Berkman Center
  • Suzan-Lori Parks, Pulitzer Prize winning playwright and screenwriter
  • Nicholas Namba, U.S. State Department Acting Deputy Coordinator for Content Development and Partnerships

Student & Faculty Showcase 4:00 pm, Paramount, 559 Washington St. A showcase featuring the best of Emerson College academic and artistic achievements through performance, demonstrations, open classes, and more.

Featured Speaker: Anna Deavere Smith 5:00 pm, Paramount Mainstage, 559 Washington St.


Friday, September 14
Installation Ceremony with community reception to follow (Featured Speaker: Andrew Delbanco)
11:30 am, Cutler Majestic Theatre, 219 Tremont St.


For more information, please contact the Inauguration Office at or 617-824-8505.

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