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Stories this week at Wake Forest University

September 5, 2007

MINISTER TO DISCUSS UGANDA 25 YEARS AFTER IDI AMIN – The Rev. Jackson Senyonga, founder and senior pastor of Christian Life Church in Kampala, Uganda, will speak Sept. 16 at 7 p.m. in Wait Chapel.  After his father was murdered during Ugandan dictator Idi Amin’s regime, he reconciled with his mother, who had left him when he was an infant.  Now Senyonga is a leader in helping to transform Uganda and East Africa.  When he founded Christian Life Church 11 years ago, it grew from seven to 2,000 people in just two weeks.  Today the church has 40,000 members in hundreds of churches across four African countries.  His lecture is free and open to the public.

Contact:  Audrey Fannin, or (336) 758-4393

LIBRARIES TO UNVEIL HISTORICAL PHOTOGRAPHY WEB SITE AT BOOKMARKS FESTIVAL – A coalition of public and private libraries will unveil a new Web site,, featuring historical photographs of Forsyth County during BOOKMARKS 2007.  The third annual one-day book festival is scheduled for 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sept. 8 at Historic Bethabara Park in Winston-Salem. Wake Forest’s Z. Smith Reynolds Library and Coy C. Carpenter Medical Library, the Forsyth County Public Library and Winston-Salem State University’s C.G. O’Kelly Library are partners in the three-year, $225,000 project, which is funded by a federal grant.  Project Manager Susan Smith, who is head of information technology for the Z. Smith Reynolds Library, says the Web site will debut with 1,200 images scanned during the first year.  Viewers can browse by decade or category and post comments on the site. The library coalition plans to digitize 12,000 photos from the four respective collections over the course of the project.

Contact: Eric Frazier, or (336) 758-5238

WAKE FOREST COMMUNITY TO REFLECT ON 9/11 – On the anniversary of the September 11, 2001 terrorist hijackings, the Wake Forest community will remember and reflect upon how our lives have changed over the past six years.  At 8:46 a.m., the moment that the first plane hit the World Trade Center, a moment of silence will be observed.  At 11 a.m., a university-wide interfaith service of remembrance will take place at Wait Chapel.  “A Community Remembers:  Reflections of 9/11” is the opening convocation for the Divinity School at Wake Forest.  The Rev. Veronice Miles, instructor of homiletics and Christian education at the Divinity School, will give the sermon titled, “Living Out Loud in a World That Demands Silence.”  The service is free and open to the public.

Contact:  Audrey Fannin, or (336) 758-4393

UNIVERSITY PREPARES FOR IMMIGRATION FORUM –Wake Forest will address one of the United States’ most hotly debated issues—immigration—at a three-day conference Oct. 3-5.  Titled “Immigration: Recasting the Debate,” the conference is the first event in the university’s 2007-2008 Voices of Our Time speaker series.  “Immigration reform is not only one of the most pressing domestic issues of our time; it is also one of the most intractable,” said David Coates, Worrell Professor of Anglo-American Studies at Wake Forest and co-organizer of the event. “It is hard to think of a political issue more in need of the quiet light of serious scholarship than this.”  Peter Siavelis, associate professor of political science and co-organizer, agreed.  "We want researchers to shed more light on this issue, but not do it through the partisan sniping that is increasingly passing for political dialogue in our country.”  The conference will feature keynote addresses by major public figures giving both Democratic and Republican perspectives, including Ray Marshall, a former member of both the Clinton and Carter administrations, and Republican Sen. Mel Martinez of Florida. 

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

REFORMED MAFIA BOSS TO VISIT CAMPUS – Michael Franzese, the highest-ranking Mafia official ever to quit the crime organization and live to tell about it, will present a lecture titled “Blood Covenant” at 7 p.m. Sept. 18 in Pugh Auditorium in Wake Forest’s Benson University Center.  The event is free and open to the public.  The son of a Colombo crime family kingpin, Franzese joined the Mafia at age 24 and became one of the mob’s biggest money earners since Al Capone.  Although he drew the attention of then-federal prosecutor Rudy Giuliani and a 14-agency government task force charged solely with taking him down, he managed to elude conviction on numerous racketeering indictments.  After marrying, he gave up his life of crime, pleaded guilty and accepted a prison sentence.

Contact: Eric Frazier, or (336) 758-5238

RELIGION AND THE SIMPSONS:  SURPRISING SPIRITUALITYWhat do the Simpsons, professional wrestling and romance novels have to do with religion?  More than you might expect, according to Lynn Neal, assistant professor of religion at Wake Forest.  Neal draws some surprising correlations between popular culture products and the religious lives of their devotees.  Neal will teach a first-year seminar course this fall which will encourage students to question how popular culture is influencing individual spirituality, religious vitality and American culture.

Contact:  Audrey Fannin, or (336) 758-4393


Long before Johnny Depp swaggered across the big screen as Captain Jack Sparrow in “The Pirates of the Caribbean,” pirates have captured people’s imaginations.  In a new first-year seminar, “Under the Black Flag:  the Anthropology of Piracy,” students will learn about the myth and reality of piracy and the long fascination so many have had with it.   Eric Bowne, the visiting assistant professor of anthropology who teaches the course, can’t resist using some pirate humor and calls himself “the captain” and the class “the crew,” but he is actually serious about studying pirates.  Students will discuss the social and political world in which piracy in Atlantic and Caribbean waters developed between the 16th and 19th centuries and how piracy helped to shape the modern world.   They will study famous pirates (like Blackbeard and Henry Morgan), read historical accounts of life among the pirates, look at the current archeaological exploration of Blackbeard’s flagship “Queen Anne’s Revenge,” and review how pirates have been presented in popular culture.  “The crew will learn something about the ways in which history can be transformed into myth and vice versa – a process that shapes our understanding of the past,” Bowne said.

Contact:  Cheryl Walker, or (336) 758-6073.

PROFESSOR WEIGHS IN ON SARBANES-OXLEY ACT FIVE YEARS AFTER PASSAGE – Five years after passage of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act (SOX), the federal law aimed at restoring investor confidence in public company financial reporting is beginning to realize its potential, says George Aldhizer, PricewaterhouseCoopers Professor at Wake Forest’s Calloway School of Business and Accountancy.  That is especially true in the area of internal control reporting (SOX Section 404), he contends.  After the passage of SOX in 2002, company managements and their accounting firms spent large sums addressing accounting processes and related control problems that had been building for over a decade.  Thus, it was not surprising that the cost of SOX 404 compliance was extremely high in 2004 and 2005, he notes.  Sir David Tweedy, chairman of the International Accounting Standards Board (IASB), in a recent interview with Aldhizer, agreed that SOX (including Section 404) has spread and will continue to spread across the globe over the next few years, since it represents a crucial component of good corporate governance.

Contact: Eric Frazier, or (336) 758-5238

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