Facebook pixel President's Speaker Series | Pepperdine University Skip to main content
Pepperdine University
President's Speaker Series

President's Speaker Series

The President's Speaker Series welcomes distinguished scholars and thought leaders representing diverse points of view to examine topics and issues facing our communities and the world today. Driven by a desire to connect deeply with our community and inspire meaningful dialogue, the series provides opportunities to cultivate an engaged and impassioned collective through civil discourse.

Upcoming Event

Will Ford III and Matt Lockett  

The Dream King: How the Dream of Martin Luther King, Jr.
Is Being Fulfilled to Heal Racism in America

Wednesday, February 16, 2022
6–7:30 PM PST
Elkins Auditorium

The first installment of the 2022 President’s Speaker Series will welcome Will Ford III and Matt Lockett for a powerful exploration of their book The Dream King: How the Dream of Martin Luther King, Jr. Is Being Fulfilled to Heal Racism in America. The coauthors will discuss the history of the civil rights movement, the power of prayer, and offer insights about healing the racial divide across the nation. 

About the Speakers

Will Ford III is the director of the marketplace leadership major at Christ for the Nations Institute in Dallas, Texas. He is also the founder of Hilkiah Ministries. Ford is known internationally for his leadership in the prayer movement and teachings on intercession, revival, and societal transformation. He believes that the prayers of a godly remnant of all races brought revival to America and ultimately ended slavery. Receiving their mantle from yesterday, Ford is actively training a new generation to release justice to the most marginalized today. In addition to The Dream King, Ford is coauthor of History Makers: Your Prayers Have the Power to Heal the Past and Shape the Future with Dutch Sheets.

Matt Lockett is the executive director of the Justice House of Prayer DC located on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC. From the governmental gate of the nation, Lockett leads prayer and intercession that appeals to a holy hill that is higher than Capitol Hill. Lockett, along with his wife and four children, has served as a full-time missionary in the nation’s capital since 2004. Lockett travels and speaks on the governmental intercession. His passion is to help nurture a young, consecrated generation that will usher justice into the earth. In addition to The Dream King, Lockett is coauthor of Prayer that Impacts the World: A Study Guide for Developing a Culture of Contending Prayer.



Past Events



Illustration of healthcare


Vaccines: Where Are We and Where Are We Going?

In light of the global and national focus on the development and distribution of COVID-19 vaccines, the President’s Speaker Series welcomed a panel of leading medical, pharmaceutical, and biotechnology experts who explored “Vaccines: Where Are We and Where Are We Going?” on March 29, 2021, via Zoom. 

The engaging panel discussion featured Stéphane Bancel, CEO of Moderna, Stephen M. Hahn, former commissioner of food and drugs at the US Food and Drug Administration, and Jonathan B. Perlin, president of the Clinical Services Group and chief medical officer of HCA Healthcare, in conversation about the current state of the vaccines. Dee Anna Smith (’86), CEO of Sarah Cannon, the Cancer Institute of HCA Healthcare, and chair of the Pepperdine Board of Regents, moderated the discussion. 




Bernard, Shirley, and Khalil Kinsey


The Kinsey African American Art & History Collection: "The Myth of Absence"

On February 24, 2021, the President's Speaker Series welcomed alumnus Bernard Kinsey (MBA '73), his wife, Shirley (MA '76), and their son, Khalil, who presented "The Kinsey African American Art & History Collection - 'The Myth of Absence.'" This event was part of Pepperdine's celebration of Black History Month that seeks to uplift Black voices, celebrate Black achievements, and serve as moments of reflection and remembrance of Black history in the United States.




Robert George and Cornel West


Honesty and Courage, Humility and Hope: Robert George and Cornel West in Dialogue

On January 12, 2021, Robert George, McCormick Professor of Jurisprudence and director of the James Madison Program in American Ideals and Institutions at Princeton University, and Cornel West, professor of the practice of public philosophy at Harvard University and Professor Emeritus at Princeton University, discussed the deep character required to engage thoughtfully and respectfully in vibrant conversations that explore diverse viewpoints for the inaugural lecture of the President's Speaker Series.




Suggest a Speaker or Topic

The Pepperdine community is invited to participate in developing a robust roster of speakers with diverse backgrounds and perspectives for the President's Speaker Series. Submit a speaker or topic for consideration by completing the suggestion form. All submissions will be considered and evaluated based on programming needs.