Leading ethics scholar to speak on Sept. 27

Release Date: 8/25/2011

Clarksville, Ark. --- University of the Ozarks will host one of the country's leading scholars on professional ethics when Dr. William F. May visits campus to speak on Tuesday, Sept. 27.

William F. May

Dr. William F. May will present a lecture titled "Moral Leadership in a Shaken Democracy" on Sept. 27 as part of the university's Walton Arts and Ideas Series.

May's lecture, titled "Moral Leadership in a Shaken Democracy," will begin at 7 p.m. in the Rowntree Recital Hall, located in the Walton Fine Arts Center. The lecture is open to the public and admission is free.

May is a senior fellow at the Institute of Practical Ethics and Public Life at the University of Virginia. Earlier, he served as visiting professor at the Institute for Social and Policy Studies at Yale University, and holder of the Maguire Chair in American History and Ethics at the Library of Congress. He gave the five Stone Lectures at Princeton Theological Seminary in 2009 out of which his book on "The National Covenant" emerged.

May's lecture, "Moral Leadership in a Shaken Democracy," will explore contending types of public leadership that bear not only on politicians and political leaders, but other professionals such as lawyers, doctors, teachers, labor leaders and religious officials. May will discuss such issues as: What virtues or strengths of character do we need in leaders and citizens for democracy to work in a dangerous world?

In the course of his academic career, May founded and chaired the Department of Religious Studies at Indiana University, the Maguire Institute for Ethics and Public Responsibility at Southern Methodist University, and held the Joseph P. Kennedy Sr. Chair at the Kennedy Institute of Ethics, Georgetown University.

His honors include national service on the subgroup on Ethical Foundations for the Clinton Task Force on Health Care Reform and on the President's Council on Bioethics (2002-2004). He has also received distinguished teaching awards from Indiana University, the American Academy of Religion, Southern Methodist University, the Alumnal Award for Distinction in Scholarship and Teaching from Yale Divinity School, and selection as a national lecturer by the Phi Beta Kappa Society.

May has written numerous books, including, "The Physician's Covenant (2nd Ed. Rev.);" "The Patient's Ordeal;" "The Ethics of Giving and Receiving: Am I My Foolish Brother's Keeper?" and the "Beleaguered Rulers: The Public Obligation of the Professional." Grants from the Guggenheim Foundation, the Lilly Endowment, the Danforth Foundation, and the National Endowment for the Humanities have supported his work.

May is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Princeton University (1948), with B.D. (1952), and Ph.D. (1962) degrees from Yale University. He is an ordained minister of the Presbyterian Church (USA), and has lectured widely in the United States and abroad.