President’s Thinking Symposium on Living, Learning, and Leading


Patricia Witt

Patricia Witt

Thinking Symposium

Please join Southwestern University President and Professor Edward Burger as he hosts a series of guest speakers as part of his experimental course, “Effective Thinking Through Creative Puzzle-Solving.” Guests will describe the “puzzles” of their professional lives, the practices of mind they use to resolve them, and lead thought-provoking conversations on the meaningful and life-changing experiences that have shaped their lives.

October 25, 2 p.m.
Julie Hersh

President of the Hersh Foundation, philanthropist, and advocate for mental health, author of the book Struck by Living: From Depression to Hope, serving on many boards including the UT Southwestern Medical Foundation and Dallas Museum of Art.

November 1, 2 p.m.
Veronica “Ronnye” Stidvent

President of Stidvent Partners, served as Director of the Center for Politics and Governance at the LBJ School of Public Affairs, Chancellor of WGU Texas, and member of Governor Abbott’s Advisory Council on Cultural Affairs.

November 8, 2 p.m.
Cassandra McZeal ’92

A mathematics major at Southwestern, now the Computational and Data Science Manager at ExxonMobil, earned her Ph.D. in Computational and Applied Mathematics from Rice University, and is a leader in the Girl Scouts of the USA.

November 15, 2 p.m.
Brian Jackson ’95 & Thomas Ranese

Brian—an international studies major at SU—is the team leader of Commerce Partnerships at Google, former senior executive at NBC Universal and The World Bank.  Thomas leads Global Marketing for Uber after more than a decade at Google—serving as their Vice President of Hardware Marketing—and formerly the first CMO for the State of New York.

November 22, 2 p.m.
Jay & Mary Beth Marshall

Jay is Managing Director and Chief Learning Officer at AlixPartners, specializing in organizational change management, holder of the Henry Crown Fellowship at The Aspen Institute. Mary Beth is Of Counsel at Safe Horizon, the nation’s leading victim services organization; beyond a BBA, JD, and master’s degrees, she holds an AD from Le Cordon Bleu.

December 6, 2 p.m.
Sherron Watkins

Former Vice President of Enron Corporation, named by TIME Magazine in 2002 as one of their “Persons of the Year,” and co-author of the book Power Failure, the Inside Story of the Collapse of Enron.

Free and Open to the Entire Community
Room 110
F.W. Olin Building