Current News

Watkins Lecture Series to Host Soledad O’Brien

Aug 01, 2017


Soledad O'BrienRandolph-Macon College's Watkins Lecture Series will host Soledad O'Brien on October 5, 2017 at 7:30 p.m. in Blackwell Auditorium, R-MC Center for the Performing Arts (205 Henry Street). O'Brien will present "Diversity: On TV, Behind the Scenes, and in Our Lives."

Map and Directions

This event is free and open to the public; however, tickets are required and are available on a first-come, first-served basis. Reserve tickets.

Soledad O'Brien
Through the power of storytelling, O'Brien, an award-winning journalist, documentarian, news anchor, producer and philanthropist, brings a fresh perspective on diverse and contemporary issues. A champion of diversity, she gives voice to the underserved and disenfranchised through her Emmy-winning reporting and acclaimed documentary series "Black in America" and "Latino in America."

O'Brien, a graduate of Harvard University, is the host of the Sunday morning syndicated political show, "Matter of Fact with Soledad O'Brien." In 2013 she launched Starfish Media Group, a multiplatform media production and distribution company dedicated to uncovering and producing empowering stories that take a challenging look at the often divisive issues of race, class, wealth, poverty and opportunity, through personal stories. Starfish Media Group produces "Black in America" and "Latino in America" and other programming for CNN.

In 2013, O'Brien joined HBO's "Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel" as a correspondent. Her critically-acclaimed memoir, The Next Big Story: My Journey Through the Land of Possibilities, chronicles her biggest reporting moments and how her upbringing and background have influenced these experiences.

In 2011, O'Brien and her husband, Brad Raymond, started PowHERful Foundation, a non-profit organization that helps bridge the gap of opportunities for young minority women from low-income families to attend college with financial assistance, mentoring and holistic support.

R-MC's Watkins Lecture Series
The Watkins Lecture Series was established in 1999 by Marion Watkins Herget and Dr. George D. Watkins '44 and is named in honor of their parents, who owned and operated the Herald-Progress newspaper. The series brings together the Town of Ashland and R-MC communities—two entities important to the Watkins family.

The Watkins' gift has provided lecture attendees the opportunity to hear from a host of notable speakers, including Garrison Keillor, Ari Shapiro, Nina Totenberg, James Carville, Julian Bond, Bob Woodward, David Gergen, and Rubin "Hurricane" Carter.

R-MC's Cultural Arts & Entertainment Series
Randolph-Macon College hosts a series of events throughout the year, which are open to the community. For information on upcoming events, including schedule changes, visit