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Alumnus and Photographer Ted Grussing (JD ’74) Captures Spectacular Images of Sedona from the Air

Mountains in Arizona

On Friday, September 22, 2023, at 7:30 PM, Ted Grussing (JD ’74), whose vocations include flying, photography, and the law, will share a collection of his aerial nature photography in An Evening with Ted Grussing: The Wonders of Sedona and Northern Arizona. The event will be held in Smothers Theatre on the Malibu campus.

“I began my career as a professional photographer when my parents gave me a Baby Brownie camera (a Kodak) when I was eight,” says Grussing. “By age 14, I was a professional photographer doing commercial and product shoots as well as fine art work. Photography has stayed with me as an art form all of my life. It is a way of sharing the beauty of the world with others and a reminder that there is more than humankind on this planet.”

Ted GrussingPhotographer Ted Grussing (JD '74).

Grussing earned his law degree at Pepperdine, studying at night and operating his family business by day. “It is a delight to be back at Pepperdine and see how the law school has developed and prospered under the brilliant leadership of [senior chancellor and Dean Emeritus] Ronald Phillips,” he says. “We started together in a strip mall in downtown Santa Ana. I was the head coach of the synchronized swim team that our daughters swam for.”

Dean Emeritus Phillips reflects Grussing’s admiration back. “I have known Ted Grussing since he was an early student of Pepperdine Law School, graduating in 1974, and he continues to be connected to the University as a grandparent of a current Seaver College student,” he says. “Ted has spent countless hours in his glider, soaring the skies around Sedona, Arizona, and beyond. Ted gets as much out of, and deeply values, every single day as much as anyone I know. Ted Grussing is a fascinating man, and I am very much looking forward to his presentation at Smothers Theatre.” 

Grussing’s immersive photographs of Sedona and Northern Arizona capture the majesty of the volcanoes, mountains, red rock canyons, and rivers as well as the fragile intimacy of his encounters with wildlife. “Aerial photography gives you a look at the earth with no borders, fences, or other obstructions,” he says. “You just see the planet and the limitless beauty of the earth.”

An Evening with Ted Grussing is the centerpiece of a special celebration to kick off the 2023–2024 season at the Lisa Smith Wengler Center for the Arts, which includes the following events:

  • 6 PM to 9:30 PM: Hamburgers and ice cream treats will be available for purchase from Steamin’ Burger and Creamy Boys, two of Los Angeles’ most popular food trucks.
  • 6:30 PM: Students from the Pepperdine Theatre Program will perform a preview of the Luciana and Daniel Forge Fall Musical, Meredith Wilson’s The Music Man, which will open at Smothers Theatre in November.
  • 6:45 PM: Andrea Gyorody, director of the Frederick R. Weisman Museum of Art, will provide a guided tour of the museum’s current exhibition from Icelandic artist Hildur Ásgeirsdóttir Jónsson, Infinite Space, Sublime Horizons.

The event will culminate at 7:30 PM with Grussing’s photography presentation. Tickets are available on the Center for the Arts website.