The Lyndon Baines Johnson Distinguished Lecture Series fulfills a promise made at Texas State University by its most distinguished alumnus, President Lyndon Baines Johnson, in 1973. The series brings to reality President Johnson's desire to invite some of the finest minds in the country to the campus to speak.
On his last visit to San Marcos in 1973, President Johnson brought along his former economic advisor, Walter Heller, as the first lecturer of many he wanted to bring to his alma mater. His death came less than a week later, before any plans could be implemented.
President Johnson completed his undergraduate work at Texas State in 1930, receiving a bachelor of science degree with permanent teacher certification. In 1959, while he was still a United States senator, the college named him its first Distinguished Alumnus. In 1962 he received the university's first honorary doctorate. As he moved up in national leadership, President Johnson never lost touch with the university. The Lyndon Baines Johnson Distinguished Lecture Series, initiated in 1982, recognizes the importance of education to the continuing prosperity of the nation, a recurring theme during LBJ's years of government service. He returned to the campus in 1965 as president of the United States to sign the historic Higher Education Act.
Through the series, Texas State hopes to perpetuate the president's high educational ideals by bringing outstanding individuals to campus to meet with students and faculty and to present public lectures.
In recent years, speakers and topics have often been aligned with Common Experience themes.
Dr. Samantha Nutt
Founder and executive director of War Child in North America
» Bio and event details
William H. McRaven
University of Texas System Chancellor and retired U.S. Navy four-star admiral
» Bio and event details
Film director, screenwriter and producer
Patrick J. Kennedy
Former U.S. representative and co-founder of One Mind for Research
Award-winning journalist and CNN anchor
Lynda Johnson Robb and Luci Baines Johnson
Moderated by Harry Middleton
Poet, author and activist
President of the Council for Opportunity in Education
Founder, First Amendment Center
Tibor P. Nagy Jr.
Former ambassador to Ethiopia and Guinea
Parker J. Palmer
Former U.S. representative, senator and ambassador
Co-founder and chief counsel, Southern Poverty Law Center
Washington bureau chief, Boston Globe
Chair of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
George Christian and Harry Middleton
Former press secretary to LBJ; director of the LBJ Library
Past poet laureate of the U.S.
PBS news anchor, author
CEO, Motion Picture Association of America
White House UPI bureau chief
Richard W. Riley
Secretary of Education
Larry L. King
William S. Sessions
Civil rights leader
The Next Amendment
Play celebrating 200th anniversary of the Constitution
Member of British Parliament
James “Red” Duke
Physician, TV personality
William D. Ford
Bobby Ray Inman
Former director, National Security Agency, and deputy director, CIA
House Majority Leader
Former President of the United States
C. Warren Hollister
Historian, with one of four extant copies of the Magna Carta
W. Thomas Johnson
Publisher, Los Angeles Times, former secretary to LBJ
Former U.S. representative, attorney
LBJ / Common Experience Distinguished Lecture Series Committee (VPUA): Roster