AU Press Releases
St. Bonaventure president to deliver Russell Lecture at Alfred University
The Russell Lecture, held annually since 1970, honors the memory of Willis Russell, former historian and department chair, who taught at Alfred University from 1926 until his retirement in 1964.
Each year, the lectureship brings to campus a nationally known historian to deliver an address, open to the public, and to meet with students in smaller groups. Previous Russell Lecturers have included Pulitzer Prize-winners Michael Kammen of Cornell University and Martin Sherwin of George Mason University. The Division of Human Studies, College of Liberal Arts & Sciences, sponsors the Russell Lecture.
Sr. Margaret’s topic for her lecture, which is open to the public free of charge, is “A 21st Century Guide to Medieval Women.”
The 20th president of St. Bonaventure University, a Franciscan university located near Olean, NY, Sr. Margaret joined the faculty of Bonaventure’s Franciscan Institute in 1997. Within two years, she was named dean and director.
Since being named university president in 2004, Sr. Margaret established the Damietta Center, a multicultural center that celebrates diversity on the campus. The university has added majors in music, women’s studies, gerontology, theater arts, art history, international studies, and sport studies, and has also embarked on a dual-admission/dual-degree program in the health professions. She also led The Anniversary Campaign for St. Bonaventure University, which surpassed its $90 million goal by $5 million.
She serves on the board of the Council of Independent Colleges of New York and the Association of Franciscan Colleges and Universities. She also is a member of the board of the Association of Catholic Colleges and Universities and is a member of the Atlantic 10 Conference’s Council of Presidents and serves on the Secretariat for the Franciscan Intellectual Tradition.
? She received her doctorate in theology in Rome in 1988, becoming the first woman to graduate from the Franciscan University of Rome at the doctoral level. She studied in Europe after completing master’s degrees in theology at Duquesne University and Franciscan Studies at St. Bonaventure University.
? From 1980 to 1982, she worked as part of an international commission on a new Rule of Life for the 400 institutes of the Franciscan Third Order Regular. Sr. Margaret has lectured extensively both in the U.S. and abroad and served for eight years as the general minister of her religious congregation, the Sisters of St. Francis of Whitehall, Pa. The congregation serves in the United States, Brazil, Lithuania and Bolivia.
? ?Sr. Margaret holds five honorary doctorates and is the recipient of a number of other honors. She is a member of Duquesne University’s prestigious Century Club. In 2007, she was named the Whitehall (Pa.) Borough Person of the Year and received the Community Leader Interfaith Award from the National Federation for Just Communities of Western New York.