Gifford Lecture Series

The Gifford Lecture Series brings nationally-recognized business leaders and scholars to the School of Business and Economics. Students often benefit from interacting with the speakers in their classes as well.

Previous Lecturers

James F. Parker

October 17, 2011
Mr. Parker served as CEO and vice chairman of the board of Southwest Airlines from 2001 through 2004. In his talk, Doing the Right Thing, Mr. Parker discussed the impact of organizational culture and values on corporate profitability.

Marianne M. Jennings

February 21, 2011
Ms. Jennings is a prize-winning writer, professor, and business expert. She is a professor of legal and ethical studies in business at the W.P. Carey School of Business, Arizona State University.

Jon Landau

September 20, 2010
Mr. Landau is an Academy Award-winning producer. Two of his films, Titanic and Avatar, are among the highest-grossing films of all time.

Mark Glickman

March 23, 2010
Mr. Glickman is an expert in green marketing, crisis management, and 'next generation' PR.

Sherron Watkins

February 9, 2010
Ms. Watkins is a former vice president of Enron Corporation, whistleblower, and author of Power Failure, the Inside Story of the Collapse of ENRON.

W. George Jameson

November 11, 2009
Mr. Jameson is a former director, in the Office of Policy and Corporate Coordination, Office of the Director of CIA (2005-09).

The Richard P. Gifford Endowment

The late Richard P. Gifford was a vice president for General Electric and a leader in the business, civic, educational, and religious life of the Lynchburg community. After his death, friends and business colleagues established the Richard P. Gifford Endowment in his honor and memory. The endowment helps fund the Gifford lectures, which feature outstanding executives and scholars in business, leadership, and economics.