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Celebration of Ideas Lecture Series Continues March 7 with Michele Norris Impact
Fairmont State News

Celebration of Ideas Lecture Series Continues March 7 with Michele Norris

Nov 28, 2010

The Celebration of Ideas Lecture Series at Fairmont State University and Pierpont Community & Technical College brings nationally prominent speakers of diverse viewpoints to campus each fall and spring.

"It is our goal to create a campus environment where open exchange of ideas is both promoted and celebrated," said Michael Belmear, Vice President for Student Affairs.

"We believe that the development of our student body must include exposure to a variety of ideas. Through this exposure, our students will be better prepared to operate in an increasingly complex society. We are very fortunate to be able to bring this diverse and talented group of speakers into North Central West Virginia. The 2010-2011 Celebration of Ideas Lecture Series seeks to provide a variety of perspectives as they pertain to national and global issues."

Admission is free and open to the public for all of the events in the lecture series. Tickets are not required. For more information, call the Student Affairs Office at (304) 367-4215.

Sign Language Interpreting and other accommodations for people with disabilities are available by request. Please contact Andrea Pammer, at least two weeks prior to each event in the Lecture Series, by phone at (304) 367-4686 or e-mail at

Michele Norris
7 p.m.
March 7, 2011
Turley Center Ballroom

Michele Norris, an award-winning journalist with more than two decades of experience, has hosted NPR's news magazine "All Things Considered," public radio's longest-running national program, since 2002.

Before coming to NPR, Norris was a correspondent for ABC News for eight years. As a contributing correspondent for the "Closer Look" segments on "World News Tonight with Peter Jennings," Norris reported extensively on education, inner city issues, the nation's drug problem and poverty. Norris has also reported for the Washington Post, Chicago Tribune and Los Angeles Times. Her Washington Post series about a 6-year-old who lived in a crack house was reprinted in the book "Ourselves Among Others," along with essays by Vaclav Havel, Nelson Mandela, Annie Dillard and Gabriel Garcia Marquez.

Norris has received numerous awards for her work. In 2009, she was named Journalist of the Year by the National Association of Black Journalists. A four-time Pulitzer Price entrant, Norris has also been honored with NABJ's 2006 Salute to Excellence Award, for her coverage of Hurricane Katrina; the University of Minnesota's Outstanding Achievement Award; and the 1990 Livingston Award. She was named one of Essence Magazine's 25 Most Influential Black Americans in 2009; elected to Ebony Magazine's Power 150 list in 2009; and honored with Ebony's 8th Outstanding Women in Marketing & Communications Award in 2007.

Norris also earned both an Emmy Award and Peabody Award for her contribution to ABC News' coverage of 9/11. She is on the judging committee for both the John Chancellor Award for Excellence in Journalism, and the Livingston Awards. Norris is also a frequent guest on "Meet the Press" and "The Chris Matthews Show" on NBC.

Norris attended the University of Wisconsin, where she majored in electrical engineering and graduated from the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis, where she studied journalism. She lives in Washington, D.C., and is married to Broderick Johnson. She has two young children and a stepson who lives and works in D.C. Norris' first book, "The Grace of Silence: A Memoir," will be published by Pantheon in September 2010.

"Bus Stop"
8 p.m.
April 2, 2011
Wallman Hall Theatre

In this warm and affecting hit comedy, William Inge examines some of the many faces of love.

As down-home characters interact in a street corner restaurant during the course of a hilariously turbulent night, extraordinary qualities are revealed in seemingly ordinary people.

Frustration, tears and laughter result as characters are forced to confront their own motivations. Romance blossoms and love banishes loneliness. As Inge demonstrates in this winning tale, a lot can happen in a single night.

For many of us who grew to awareness in the 1950s, "Bus Stop" is a classic American story. Marilyn Monroe's entrance in the film version is imbedded in our consciousness. William Inge's biggest hit and his only out-and-out comedy, "Bus Stop" truly exemplifies America's postwar awakening and introduces characters that have since become new cultural icons.

Inge's American masterpiece still speaks to us in the new century. Rich with character and plot and the message that "we're all in this together," "Bus Stop" shows that our lives are truly intertwined; we affect each other in subtle and profound ways as we go about our daily lives. Few playwrights are able to make the everyday universal and the commonplace the stuff of great theatre. Inge is one of these playwrights.

Established as the theatre in residence at the School of Fine Arts at The University of Montana, Montana Repertory Theatre has been providing top-quality theatre to audiences across the country since 1968.

Celebration of Ideas Lecture SeriesJamie TworkowskiMichele NorrisRebecca SklootBus Stop