Jane Addams Conference Nov. 4 at Rockford College

Dr. Jean Bethke Elshtain will be awarded the Jane Addams Medal for her extraordinary work as one of the world’s foremost contemporary thinkers on moral and theological issues.

Dr. Elshtain is also one of the leading scholars on the work of Jane Addams, Rockford College alumna and Nobel Peace Prize Laureate.

Dr. Elshtain will speak at the Jane Addams Conference at 4 p.m., Friday, Nov. 4 in Fisher Chapel on the college campus.

Dr. Elshtain, in her address, “Jane Addams, Hull House and the Wonder of Extraordinary Conversation,” will set the theme for the Jane Addams Conference. The medal will be awarded following her presentation.

The Jane Addams Medal is awarded to women who have taken stands in their lives that required critical thinking and courageous action. Medal recipients, in the tradition of Jane Addams, are pioneers in their professions, outstanding in character, and recognized for their contributions to the arts, sciences and society.

The award was established in 1944 by Rockford College Trustee George Frazer, and the medal was designed by Chicago artist Andrene Kauffman. Each bronze-cast medal is separately inscribed with the name of the recipient, and presented at a special ceremony.

The medal was first awarded to Dr. Florence Rena Sabin during the College’s Centennial Celebration May 3, 1947. Since that time, the Jane Addams Medal has been awarded to more than 30 of the world’s most outstanding women in science, humanities, arts, law, literature and other fields of endeavor. Past recipients include Sandra Day O’Connor, Corrie Ten Boom and Queen Fredericka of Greece.

Dr. Elshtain is a political philosopher who has shown the connections between our political and ethical convictions. A graduate of Colorado State University (A.B., 1963), she went on to earn a master’s degree in history as a Woodrow Wilson Fellow before turning to the study of politics.

She received her doctorate in politics from Brandeis University. Dr. Elshtain joined the faculty of Vanderbilt University in 1988 as the first woman to hold an endowed professorship in the history of that institution.

From the Nov. 2-8, 2005, issue

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