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Texas State University
Texas State University

Parker J. Palmer

Writer, Teacher
Monday, April 28, 2003 · Evans Auditorium · 7:30 p.m.

A writer, teacher and activist, Parker J. Palmer works independently on issues concerning education, leadership, spirituality and social change. His efforts span a wide range of institutions: colleges and universities, public schools, community organizations, churches, retreat centers, corporations and foundations. He serves as senior associate of the American Association of Higher Education, senior advisor to the Fetzer Institute and is founder of the national Teacher Formation Program for K-12 teachers.

His work has been featured by the New York Times, The Chronicle of Higher Education, CBS-TV news, National Public Radio and The Voice of America. The Danforth Foundation, the Lilly Endowment and the Fetzer Institute have sup­ported his work with major grants.

In 1998, The Leadership Project named Palmer as one of the 30 "most influential senior leaders" in higher education and one of the 10 key "agenda-setters" of the past decade. In 1993 he won the national award of the Council of Independent Colleges for "Outstanding Contributions to Higher Education." In 2001, Carleton College awarded Palmer the Distinguished Achievement Award on the occasion of his 40th reunion. 

—Adapted from the original event program distributed at Parker J. Palmer's LBJ Distinguished Lecture

“I want to talk about the inner life of the teacher as a neglected key to good teaching, as a neglected key to the renewal of the vocation among teachers and as a neglected key to educational reform.”

“We have to at some point start addressing in our professional training this profound problem that we have in higher education of graduating many, many people who have the knowledge and skill to manipulate the external world very effectively, but who live completely unexamined inner lives because we give them very little help in conducting that examination. We have to, at some point, take the education of heart and soul as seriously as we take the education of the skillful hand.”