Naomi Shihab Nye is an award-winning poet, writer, anthologist and educator who has authored and/or edited more than 30 volumes. Her fiction for young people includes "Habibi," "Going Going," "There Is No Long Distance Now" and "The Turtle of Oman." "The Turtle of Oman" was chosen a Horn Book Best Book of 2014, and a 2015 Notable Children’s Book by the American Library Association. She has been affiliated with The Michener Center for writers at the University of Texas at Austin for 20 years and also poetry editor at The Texas Observer for 20 years. In 2019 she was named Young People’s Poet Laureate by the Poetry Foundation. Nye is Professor of Creative Writing - Poetry at Texas State University.
Carrie Hessler-Radelet - Oct. 30, 2019
President and CEO of Project Concern International (PCI)
Carrie Hessler-Radelet is the President & CEO of Project Concern International (PCI). PCI is a global development organization working with families and communities to enhance health, end hunger, overcome hardship and advance women & girls in 15 countries. Prior to PCI, Carrie served as Director of the Peace Corps (2012-2017) and Deputy Director (2010-2012), leading America’s iconic international volunteer service organization with programs in over 65 countries. At Peace Corps she led historic reforms to modernize and strengthen the agency to meet the challenges and opportunities of the 21st century. Carrie is passionate about empowering communities to discover their own sustainable, innovative solutions to poverty.
Brigadier General David Brahms - Nov. 9, 2018
Former Director, Judge Advocate Division, Headquarters Marine Corps
Brigadier General Brahms served as Director, Judge Advocate Division, Headquarters Marine Corps, Washington, D.C. and Staff Judge Advocate to the Commandant of the Marine Corps, which is the senior uniformed lawyer in the Marine Corps. His personal military decorations include: Legion of Merit; Bronze Star Medal with Combat V; and Meritorious Service Medal.
Since retiring from active duty, he has practiced law in Carlsbad, California, served on a number of non-profit boards and been active in the Rotary Club. His legal practice focuses on military law, and he is often called on by the media to address military legal topics. He has been at the forefront of changing U.S. policy regarding use of torture to comply with both domestic law and treaty obligations. He was also technical advisor to the 1992 movie “A Few Good Men.”
BGen Brahms’ discussion to the community focused on peace. He noted that in his lifetime, over half a million people have died in service to the United States. He implored upon the students to remain steadfast in their quest for peace, and charged them to, “look upward, look forward,” and also challenged them to “embrace history and know it.”
Following his talk, students were invited to ask questions. BGen Brahms provided the students practical tips on how to practice peace, relayed information about the peace movement during the Vietnam War; discussed the current structure of the Marine Corps; and noted how one comes to terms with peace after a war. In response, BGen Brahms noted, “That’s the only place you can go.”
Interim Head of School Carol Barry presented the Bishop’s Medal to BGen Brahms; the medal is awarded to speakers who join us under the auspices of the Endowed Leadership Lecture Series. Since 2003, the School has accorded this honor and the Bishop’s Medal to 20 recipients.
Dr. McClain is a professor of history at the University of San Diego who specializes in California history, and British and Atlantic history. She is the author of "Ellen Browning Scripps: New Money & American Philanthropy," released in June 2017. She shared with the students the impact and influence that Miss Scripps had on the San Diego region, particularly the founding of The Bishop's School.
Roy Perkins Jr. '08 was born without hands or feet, learned to swim at age 12. The San Diego Hall of Champions named him its Challenged Athlete Star of the Year in 2006 and again in 2017. Roy received a gold and a bronze medal at the 2008 Paralympics in Beijing, two silver and two bronze medals at the 2012 Paralympics in London and one gold and one silver medal at the 2016 Paralympics in Rio. He attended Stanford University. Watch the assembly video here.
Father Gregory J. Boyle, S.J. - Sept. 19, 2016
Founder and Executive Director of Homeboy Industries
The Reverend Gregory J. Boyle, S.J., is the founder and executive director of Homeboy Industries in Los Angeles, the largest gang intervention, rehabilitation and re-entry program in the world.
Father Boyle is the author of the New York Times-bestseller Tattoos on the Heart: The Power of Boundless Compassion, which was named one of the Best Books of 2010 by Publishers Weekly and received the PEN Center USA 2011 Creative Nonfiction Award. Father Boyle is also the subject of Academy Award winner Freida Lee Mock’s 2012 documentary, G-Dog. He has received the California Peace Prize and been inducted into the California Hall of Fame. In 2014, the White House named Father Boyle a Champion of Change. He received the 2016 Humanitarian of the Year Award from the James Beard Foundation.
A native Angeleno, Father Boyle entered the Society of Jesus (the Jesuits) in 1972 and was ordained a Catholic priest in 1984. He holds a bachelor’s degree in philosophy and English from Gonzaga University, a master’s degree in English from Loyola Marymount University, a master of divinity degree from the Weston School of Theology and a master of sacred theology degree from the Jesuit School of Theology at Berkeley.
On April 10, 2012, United States Army Staff Sergeant Travis Mills of the 82nd Airborne was critically injured on his third tour of duty in Afghanistan by an IED (improvised explosive device) while on patrol, losing portions of both legs and both arms. He is one of only five quadruple amputees from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan to survive such extensive injuries.
Thanks to his amazing strength, courage, an incredible will to live, the heroic actions of the men in his unit, the prayers of thousands and the healthcare providers at the Walter Reed Army Medical Center, near Washington D.C., Travis continues to overcome the obstacles of living life as a quadruple amputee. Every day is a battle, but Travis continues to astound everyone with his progress and with his amazing spirit.
Travis teaches and inspires audiences nationwide to “Never give up. Never quit.” no matter the obstacles or circumstances. Travis’s larger-than-life personality, sense of humor and incredible spirit for life engages audiences from the moment he takes center stage.
Jeff Small - Oct. 15, 2015
President and Chief Operating Officer, DreamWorks Studios
Jeff Small has served as president and chief operating officer of DreamWorks Studios since 2006. Jeff is responsible for all key business operations of the company, while helping shape the overall corporate strategy of DreamWorks alongside Principal Partner Steven Spielberg and CEO Michael Wright.
In 2009, following the company’s separation from Paramount Pictures, Jeff shepherded the re-launching of a newly independent DreamWorks Studios. He led the efforts to secure capital, creating a strong financial base for the studio’s future. He also oversaw the negotiation of the company’s worldwide distribution agreement with The Walt Disney Studios, aligning DreamWorks with the industry’s premier marketing and distribution organization.
Prior to DreamWorks, Jeff spent time at Revolution Studios, Universal Studios, Universal Pictures and the Walt Disney Company Motion Picture Group. He is a graduate of Stanford University and a native of Marietta, Georgia.
Ellen McLaughlin has worked extensively in regional and New York theater, both as an actor and as a playwright.
Acting work includes originating the part of the Angel in Angels in America, playing the role in workshops and regional productions through its Broadway run in 1993-1994.
Other favorite work includes the Homebody in Bart Sher’s production of Homebody/Kabul (Intiman, Seattle, WA), Pirate Jenny in A Threepenny Opera (Trinity Rep. Elliot Norton Award), Claire in Albee’s A Delicate Balance, (Arena Stage, Yale Repertory Theater), Margie in Good People (George St. Playhouse. Seattle Rep.) and Rosemary in Outside Mullingar (George St. Playhouse.)
Her plays have been produced Off-Broadway, regionally and internationally. She is the recipient of the Writer’s Award from the Lila Wallace-Reader’s Digest Fund as well as other honors, including the Susan Smith Blackburn Prize and grants from the NEA. Plays include, Tongue of a Bird,Iphigenia and other Daughters, Trojan Women, Infinity’s House, Helen, The Persians, Penelope, Ajax in Iraq and Septimus and Clarissa. Producers include The Public Theater, National Actors’ Theater, Classic Stage Co., New York Theater Workshop, The Guthrie, The Intiman, The Mark Taper Forum, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Actors’ Theater of Louisville, and The Almeida Theater in London.
She has taught in several programs, including Yale School of Drama, Princeton and Bread Loaf School of English. She has taught playwriting at Barnard College since 1995.
In his presentations “Lessons from Little Rock” made to the students and the community, Dr. Terrence Roberts reminded his audiences of the need to diminish belief in mythology so that truth can flourish. To do this it will be important to commit to lifelong learning.
On September 4, 1957, Terrence Roberts and eight other African American students (known as the “Little Rock Nine”) made an unsuccessful attempt to enter Little Rock Central High School in Little Rock, Arkansas. Despite the presence of the National Guard, an angry mob of about 400 surrounded the school.
On September 23, 1957, a mob of about 1000 people surrounded the school as the students attempted to enter. The following day, President Dwight D. Eisenhower sent U.S. Army troops to accompany the students to school for protection. The troops were stationed at the school for the entirety of the school year, although they were unable to prevent incidents of violence inside.
As a result of the subsequent closing of Little Rock’s high schools during the 1958-1959 school year, Dr. Roberts completed his senior year in Los Angeles, California.
In 1999, Dr. Roberts and the other people of the Little Rock Nine were awarded the Congressional Gold Medal by President Bill Clinton.
Dr. Roberts earned a bachelor of arts in sociology from California State University, Los Angeles, and a master’s in social welfare from the University of California, Los Angeles, School of Social Welfare. He has a Ph.D. in psychology from Southern Illinois University, Carbondale.
He was a member of the faculty at Pacific Union College, a private liberal arts college in Napa Valley, California, and the director of mental health at St. Helena Hospital and Health Center. Dr. Roberts was assistant dean in the UCLA School of Social Welfare and later joined the Antioch University Los Angeles where he served as core faculty and co-chair of the Master of Arts in Psychology program until 2008. He is currently Principal of the management-consulting firm, Terrence Roberts Consulting.
The Bishop’s School is an independent, coeducational college-preparatory day school for students in grades six through twelve who live throughout San Diego County. Founded in 1909, the School is affiliated with the Episcopal church.