Author J.D. Vance to present 2017 Waitt Lecture at Morningside College on Nov. 20

October 9, 2017, in Latest News

Morningside College’s 2017 Waitt Lecture will feature J.D. Vance, author of the New York Times best-seller "Hillbilly Elegy: A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis.” The lecture at 7:30 p.m. Nov. 20 in Eppley Auditorium, 3625 Garretson Ave., is free and open to the public.

Vance’s book has sold more than one million copies since its release in 2016 and has spent more than a year on The New York Times best-seller list. His personal account of a traumatic and turbulent childhood offers a firsthand look at the impact of social, regional, and economic decline on America’s white working class.

Raised by his grandparents in Middletown, Ohio, Vance enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps immediately after graduation from high school and served in Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. He later graduated from Ohio State University and earned his law degree from Yale Law School. He has worked at a large corporate law firm and at venture capital companies. Earlier this year, Vance returned to Ohio to found a nonprofit organization dedicated to addressing the state’s opioid crisis and bringing high-quality employment and educational opportunities. He regularly discusses politics and public policy, having appeared on ABC, CBS and FOX News.  He also serves as a contributor on CNN.

Norman Waitt Jr., a 1986 Morningside graduate and a member of the Morningside College Board of Directors, established the Waitt Lecture Series at Morningside College in 1997. Recent lecturers have included CNN journalist and commentator Fareed Zakaria, “Meet the Press” host Chuck Todd, presidential historian Doris Kearns Goodwin, economist/humorist Ben Stein, and documentary filmmaker Ken Burns.