Ohio University

Kennedy Lecture Series

Ohio University’s Kennedy Lecture Series was established in 1962 by a gift from OHIO alumni and stalwart supporters Edwin L. and Ruth Kennedy. The Kennedy Lecture Series aims to bring speakers who appeal to a broad cross-section of the OHIO community to the Athens Campus to discuss significant issues in American life.

2019-2020 Speakers

Julie Cohen headshot

Julie Cohen, Documentary Film Director 

The Making of RBG and more! 

Monday, September 9, 2019 
7:30 p.m., Baker University Center Ballroom 

Doors open at 6:30 p.m., Un-ticketed and free to the public 

Julie Cohen is the co-director and producer of the Oscar-nominated documentary RBG and is also known for writing, directing and producing nine feature documentaries. These include The Sturgeon Queens, a documentary about a smoked fish emporium, immigration and women in business, and American Veteran, which focuses on a soldier paralyzed from the neck down in Afghanistan. Additionally, Cohen is a former staff producer for NBC News, a Yale Law School graduate and an adjunct professor at the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. 


Brandon McMillan headshot

Brandon McMillan, Expert Dog Trainer, Host of CBS show “Lucky Dog” 

From Hopeless to a Home

Monday, October 28, 2019
7:30 p.m., Memorial Auditorium

Doors open at 6:30 p.m., Un-ticketed and free to the public 

A behaviorist definitely known for diversity, Brandon McMillan has spent his entire life perfecting the art of dog training. Drawing into his years as a wild animal trainer for film and television, McMillan has created a unique training system he likes to call a “Hybrid System” where he takes all his knowledge and experience of working with wild animals and applies it to the domestic world of dogs.  His distinct methods can be seen on his Emmy winning television show “Lucky Dog” on CBS, a show where he made his “7 Common Commands™” training system popular (Sit, Stay, Down, Come, Off, Heel, No).


Cory Richards wearing a bright red coat, brown beanie hat, sunglasses and backpack hikes up a mountain

Cory Richards, Mountain Climber and Photographer 

Monday February 24, 2020 

7:30 p.m., Baker University Center Ballroom 

Doors open at 6:30 p.m., Un-ticketed and free to the public

An explorer and visual storyteller, Cory Richards was named National Geographic Adventurer of the Year in 2012. His camera has taken him from the controlled and complex studio to the wild and remote corners of the world - from the unclimbed peaks of Antarctica and the Himalayas of Nepal to the forgotten war zones of Angola, Uganda, and Pakistan—all in an attempt to capture not only the soul of exploration but also the paradoxes and surprising similarities inherent in our human family. Richards is a passionate climber as well as social documentarian and has carved a niche as one of the world's leading photographers, pursuing the genres from adventure, to geo-political and social impact, to portraiture. His images have appeared in National Geographic magazine, Outside, and the New York Times, and his film work has won awards at nearly every major adventure film festival, including the grand prize at the Banff Mountain Film Festival.