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Stories this week at Wake Forest University

October 11, 2006

PULITZER PRIZE-WINNING COLUMNIST LEONARD PITTS TO SPEAK AT CONVOCATION – Leonard Pitts Jr., Pulitzer Prize winner, syndicated columnist and author, will deliver “Home of the Brave,” Wake Forest University’s Fall Convocation address, at 11 a.m. Oct. 12 in the university’s Wait Chapel. The event is free and open to the public. Pitts’ appearance is sponsored by the Smith Richardson Foundation and is part of the university’s new “Voices of Our Time” guest speaker series, which brings renowned experts to campus to discuss timely issues. Directly following the convocation ceremony, Pitts will be available to talk to the media during a brief press conference in Room 310 of Wake Forest’s Benson University Center. Media seating for convocation is reserved in the first and second rows on the far right side of Wait Chapel. Cameras may set up along the stairways and balcony. Media needing audio should arrive at the chapel no later than 10:30 a.m. Since 1994, Pitts has written a nationally-syndicated column about pop culture, social issues and family life. In 2004, he received the Pulitzer Prize for commentary. He has been recognized by the American Association of Sunday and Feature Editors, the Society of Professional Journalists, the National Association of Black Journalists and the Simon Wiesenthal Center, among others. Pitts is the author of “Becoming Dad: Black Men and the Journey to Fatherhood.”

Contact: Maggie Barrett, or (336) 758-5237.


HEARN PLAZA DEDICATION CEREMONY PLANNED FOR OCT. 12 – Wake Forest President Nathan O. Hatch and the university’s Board of Trustees will participate in a dedication ceremony for the university’s Thomas K. Hearn Jr. Plaza (main Quad) at 4:30 p.m. Oct. 12. The ceremony will take place under the new arch on the west side of the Quad. Hearn Plaza has been renamed in honor of Thomas K. Hearn Jr., who served as the university’s 12th president from 1983 until his retirement in 2005. Hearn will speak at the dedication ceremony, along with members of the university’s Board of Trustees. A reception on the plaza will be held after the ceremony.

Contact: Wake Forest News Service at (336) 758-5237.


CELEBRATING THE FREEDOM TO READ – Wake Forest will celebrate the freedom to read at a “Banned Book Reading” in Z. Smith Reynolds Library at 3:30 p.m. Oct. 17. The event is being held in observance of the 25th anniversary of Banned Book Week, which was officially observed Sept. 23-30. Ten-minute excerpts will be read from five different banned books, including John Steinbeck’s “Of Mice and Men,” “The Gospel According to Harry Potter” by Connie Neal and “Queen Mab” by Percy Bysshe Shelley. Media are invited to attend.

Contact: Pam Barrett, or (336) 758-5237.


GOOD GRIEF! IS THAT ART? – Tom Everhart, the only painter ever commissioned by Charles M. Schulz to use the “Peanuts” characters, will visit Wake Forest to discuss “Comic Art vs. Fine Art” at noon Oct. 18 in Scales Fine Arts Center, Room 102, as part of the exhibit “Charles M. Schulz: His World in Art and Objects.” Everhart’s oil painting of Snoopy titled “Hollywood Hound Dog” is one of hundreds of items on display in the exhibit featured at the Charlotte and Philip Hanes Art Gallery. The exhibit also includes more than 46 original drawings from Schulz, including rare “Li’l Folks” strips. Other events being held in conjunction with the exhibit include “A Conversation with Jeannie Schulz” at 3 p.m. Oct. 28 and a lecture at 7:30 p.m. Nov. 14 by Rheta Grimsley Johnson, author of “Good Grief: The Story of Charles M. Schulz.” The exhibit will run until Nov. 15. The museum will offer extended hours during the exhibit and can arrange a limited number of school field trips.

Contact: Pam Barrett, or (336) 758-5237.


FISHERIES LINKED TO DECLINE OF GALAPAGOS ALBATROSS – Fishermen caught and killed about 1 percent of the world’s waved albatrosses in a year, according to a new study by Wake Forest biologists. “If that happens every year, that is not sustainable,” said Jill Awkerman, a Wake Forest graduate student who is the lead author of a study published online Sept. 26 in the journal Biological Conservation. “In a matter of decades, you could be talking about extinction.” Awkerman’s research shows the waved albatrosses are unintentionally killed when caught in fishing nets or on fishing hooks, but are also intentionally harvested for human consumption. Awkerman worked with David Anderson, professor of biology at Wake Forest, on the study of the large seabirds. Since 1999, Anderson and his research team have studied survival rates of waved albatrosses on Española Island in the Galapagos Islands, located off the coast of Ecuador. Española is a small island where almost all of the waved albatrosses in the world nest and breed.

Contact: Cheryl V. Walker, or (336) 758-5237.

Press Contacts:

Jacob McConnico
(336) 758-5237

Kevin Cox
(336) 758-5237

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