Lecture Series Funds

Gift Amount

Elwin D. and Helen Farwell Distinguished Lecture Series Endowment

Established in honor of the retirement of Elwin D. Farwell, Luther College's sixth president, this lecture series, along with the Humanities Endowment, generally hosts two major speakers each year who are connected to important current conversations at Luther.

Ironside Distinguished (Alumni) Lecture in Nursing

Established by Pamela (Magnussen) '81 and Jay Ironside '81, this fund is intended to bring distinguished and notable Luther College nursing alumni to campus, who can provide relevant clinical and/or research expertise to students, faculty, and the greater Decorah community. The lecture is held annually. The lecturer will also engage with the Luther College faculty and students in additional lectures, forums, classes/labs, and faculty development while on campus. (Non-Endowed/Current Fund) 

Gerhard Marcks Endowment in Art History

Established by H. George and Jutta Anderson to provide support for annual lectures in Art History. The lectures are meant to reach out to a general audience, with exploration of the religious dimension encouraged, but not required.

Oen Fellowship Endowment

Established by Dr. Ordean and Carol Oen, friends of H. George Anderson, the seventh president of Luther College and the second presiding bishop of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America, the fund supports the religion department to invite a distinguished guest lecturer to Luther College biannually to explore and discuss intersections between religion, science, politics, and the arts. Oen Fellows spend three to five days on campus meeting with both faculty and students to discuss issues in formal and informal settings.

Lucille Brickner Brown Price Distinguished Lecture Series

Established by Lucile B. Price, in recognition of the value of a liberal arts education for women as they become leaders in today's society, this fund supports speakers who illustrate the roles, contributions, programs, and achievements of women as leaders in society.

Dr. David J. Roslien Distinguished Lecture in Science and Leadership

Established by Michael Osterholm ’75, in honor of David "Doc" Roslien for his distinguished service to Luther College as a Professor of Biology, Vice President of Advancement, and Interim President, this fund will bring internationally recognized individuals to campus who, through the use of cutting-edge science and global leadership in policy and program, have made major impacts on our lives and/or the quality of the environment.

Sihler Family Endowment

The Sihler Memorial Lecture series was originally established in 1980 as a memorial to Rev. Ernest W. Sihler (1900-1970) and Mable Wold Sihler (1904-1979), with its focus on "the Christian Woman and the Church." The Sihler family has had close ties to Luther College since 1890 when Dr. William Sihler, Ernest's father, began a 50-year career as professor at the College. This fund was established by the three daughters of Ernest, alumnus Luther class of 1922, and Mabel (Wold) Sihler, alumna St. Olaf class of 1926: Margaret Sihler Anderson ’57, DSA ’92; Susan P. Sihler, ’56-58; and Carolyn Sihler Connors, ’59-60. Following the death of Margaret Sihler Anderson, Ph.D., in 2006, the name of the fund was changed to The Sihler Family Endowment, with the added emphasis on women in church music in response to Margaret's professional career in church music. The fund continues to fund lectures addressing issues of women in the church and also pertaining to women in church music.

Claude A. "Pete" and Marien J. "Mimi" Thompson Endowment Fund

Established through an estate provision by Claude "Pete" and Marien "Mimi" Thompson, this fund provides support for a biannual distinguished guest lecture to discuss and explore social, political, and economic principles from a conservative standpoint. (Deferred Fund)

Williams Endowment Fund for the Martin Luther King, Jr. Lecture

Established in honor of Lawrence and Queen Williams, in recognition of their dedication and years of service to Luther College, and to assure the continuation of the important message shared through the annual Martin Luther King, Jr.  Lecture. Lawrence Williams taught Africana studies, history, and Paideia courses at Luther from 1985-2010, and his contributions to the life of the college were deep and wide-ranging. Queen Williams, like Lawrence, also led Luther students into a deeper understanding of the lives of African Americans as a teacher in the Paideia program from 1988-2000, as a participant and co-leader for study abroad courses to the American South and Africa, and as a hostess to numerous Africana studies and history department gatherings over their 25 years in Decorah. This fund supports the ongoing costs of the annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Lecture, established by the Africana Studies program in 1987.