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President’s Lecture Series Spring 2023

Spring 2023

All lectures, which are free and open to the public, take place in the Robert C. Byrd Center for Congressional History and Education auditorium


View from Capitol Hill: Congress And Challenges Facing The Aerospace Industry

January 30 | 6:30 p.m.

Ronce Almond, Senior Counsel at the U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation

Roncevert (Ronce) Ganan Almond is Senior Counsel at the U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation. The Commerce Committee has broad jurisdiction over matters concerning interstate commerce, science and technology policy, and transportation, as well as oversight responsibilities related to aviation, space, maritime, communications, and consumer protection. He serves as the Senate’s lead aviation policy advisor for the Democratic majority.

Ronce is also an adjunct professor of law at Georgetown University where his course work focuses on U.S. policy, international law, and national security. He has written extensively on these issues, including as a contributing author to the book Aviation Regulation in the United States (2014) and editorial board member of the Air & Space Lawyer. As a regular contributor to The Diplomat, an international affairs journal, he covered policy issues in the Asia-Pacific. His work has been published in prominent law journals, including at Yale, Harvard, Columbia, Virginia, and Tufts’ Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy. Ronce serves on the Board of Governors for the historic Aeroclub of Washington, founded in 1909.

Ronce will discuss the role of Congress in addressing challenges facing the aerospace industry. Following a difficult period, from the COVID-19 pandemic to a crisis in aviation safety, policy makers must take on important challenges facing the aerospace industry. This includes addressing rapid technological innovation, workforce development, infrastructure demands, increased global competition, and sustainable aviation concerns. Through legislation, hearings, investigations, confirmation proceedings, and floor debates, the next Congress will be shaping U.S. policy in this area for the immediate and long-term future. A native of West Virginia, he will also offer insights from his pathway to Washington, D.C. and opportunities for the next generation of policymakers.


Nobel Prize Topics

February 20 | 6:30 p.m.

The Nobel Prize in Physics 2022 “for experiments with entangled photons, establishing the violation of Bell inequalities and pioneering quantum information science”

Dr. Sytil Murphy (Physics) – Associate Professor of Physics
B.A., Monmouth College, 1999; M.S., 2001, Ph.D., 2008, Montana State University.

The Nobel Prize in Chemistry 2022 “for the development of click chemistry and bioorthogonal chemistry”

Dr. Haley Albright (Chemistry) – Assistant Professor of Chemistry
B.S., University of Wisconsin-Madison, 2014; Ph.D., University of Michigan-Ann Arbor, 2019

The Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine 2022 “for his discoveries concerning the genomes of extinct hominins and human evolution”

Jason Miller (Physiology or Medicine) – Assistant Professor of Computer Science
B.S., New York University, 1984; M.S., University of Pennsylvania, 2000

The Nobel Prize in Literature 2022 “for the courage and clinical acuity with which she uncovers the roots, estrangements and collective restraints of personal memory”

Dr. Rachel Krantz (Literature) – Associate Professor of French
B.A., Grinnell College, 1988; M.A., University of Munich, 1993; Ph.D., University of Wisconsin-Madison, 2001.

The Nobel Peace Prize 2022 “The Peace Prize laureates represent civil society in their home countries. They have for many years promoted the right to criticise power and protect the fundamental rights of citizens. They have made an outstanding effort to document war crimes, human right abuses and the abuse of power. Together they demonstrate the significance of civil society for peace and democracy”

Dr. Arend “Aart” Holtslag (Peace) – Associate Professor of Political Science
Doctoraal, Katholieke Universiteit Nijmegen, 1989; Diplome, International Institute of Human Rights, 1992; Ph.D., Florida International University, 2004.

The Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel 2022 “for research on banks and financial crises”

Dr. Yuying “Joey” Xie (Economics) – Associate Professor of Economics
Professor of Economics. B.A., Southwestern University, 2001; M.B.A., Baldwin-Wallace College, 2003; Ph.D., Southern Illinois University Carbondale, 2008Economic Sciences:  Research on banks and financial crises


Management Lessons Learned Through Life Experiences

March 27 | 6:30 p.m.

Rear Admiral William Stubblefield, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (retired)

Management in a geopolitical world requires skills that are both directed and flexible. Rear Admiral William Stubblefield was able to navigate this dynamic and unforgiving world for over 35 years in multiple environments and situations. His successful management in addressing varied goals required skills incorporating human relations, technological awareness, and competence outside a typical office. Rear Admiral Stubblefield acquired his diverse management skills in multiple ways, from formal training to life experiences. He will share several noteworthy real-life instances which were instrumental in forming his management philosophy. His travels from the Arctic to Antarctica, Mongolia to the Amazon, and commanding ships on the high seas, afforded Admiral Stubblefield ample opportunity to learn and incorporate management techniques. This lessons-learned lecture will be presented through a series of vignettes with an emphasis on humor and entertainment.

Rear Admiral William Stubblefield was born and raised in Medina, Tennessee. He attended Memphis State University and graduated in 1962 with a major in secondary education and a minor in chemistry. After graduation, Stubblefield was commissioned in the United States Navy and attended Naval Officer Candidate School in Rhode Island. Following his time in the Navy, Stubblefield earned a master’s in geology at the University of Iowa. He then started his career with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Commissioned Corps, where he served as Deputy Director of the Marine Geology and Geophysics Division at the Atlantic Oceanographic and Meteorological Laboratory (AOML) in Miami. He was awarded the NOAA Corps Achievement medal for his work there. Stubblefield returned to school, earning his Ph.D. in geological oceanography from Texas A&M University. He then returned to AOML, where he served as co-scientist on a series of dives and used the Deep Diving Research Vessel Alvin. Then, Rear Admiral Stubblefield served as Commanding Officer of the NOAA Ship Surveyor, where he traveled to the Antarctic peninsula and retraced Ernest Shackleton’s final expedition. Stubblefield returned to Washington, D.C., and led NOAA’s Fleet Replacement and Modernization study before being selected as the Executive Director of the Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research. Later, he became director of the Office of NOAA Corps Operations until he retired in 1999. Since retiring from NOAA, Admiral Stubblefield and his wife Dr. Bonnie McGregor Stubblefield moved to West Virginia where he served on the Berkeley County Public Service Water District and then as the president of the Berkeley County Council. In 2019, the Stubblefields sponsored the Bonnie and Bill Stubblefield Institute for Civil Political Communications at Shepherd University and serves on its board.

For more information, contact Karen Rice, director of Lifelong Learning, at or 304-876-5135.

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