Acclaimed Author and Scholar to Deliver Inaugural Brauer Lecture on April 17

Westminster College is excited to announce that bestselling author, Harvard professor and Washington Post columnist Dr. Arthur Brooks will deliver the institution’s inaugural Brauer Lecture. The address will take place at 10 a.m. on Friday, April 17, 2020, in the Church of St. Mary the Virgin, Aldermanbury.

Titled “The Pursuit of Happiness and True Success,” Brooks’ lecture is free and open to the public. All members of the Blue Jay Nation are cordially invited to attend: The event conveniently coincides with the beginning of Alumni Weekend 2020.

Brooks led the American Enterprise Institute, one of the world’s top think tanks in Washington, D.C., for a decade before accepting a position in 2019 as the Arthur C. Patterson Faculty Fellow at Harvard Business School in Boston, MA. He also is a public leadership professor of practice at Harvard’s John F. Kennedy School of Government. Brooks previously taught economics and entrepreneurship at Syracuse University in Syracuse, NY.

A classically trained musician and behavioral scientist, Brooks earned a Ph.D. in policy analysis in 1998 from the Pardee RAND Graduate School in Santa Monica, CA. He received a master’s degree in economics in 1995 from Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton, FL, and a bachelor’s degree in economics in 1994 from Thomas Edison State College in Trenton, NJ.

Brooks melds his professional experiences and personal philosophies into his speaking engagements, newspaper columns and collection of bestsellers. The author of more than 11 books  including Love Your Enemies, The Conservative Heart and The Road to Freedom ― Brooks is most recently noted for delivering the keynote address at the National Prayer Breakfast on Feb. 6, 2020, in Washington, D.C., and for his 2019 Netflix documentary The Pursuit.

In his writing and worldwide speaking engagements, Brooks frequently tackles the subject of happiness and fulfillment in relation to personal success and the free-enterprise system.

Brooks’ upcoming lecture on the Westminster campus is part of the newly formed Brauer Lecture Series. The series is designed to bring to campus world-renowned speakers who will address the contributions of free enterprise to economic growth, public policy and world affairs.

Dr. Jeremy Straughn, Assistant Dean for Global Initiatives and Director of the Churchill Institute for Global Engagement, says the Brauer Lecture audience is in for a treat and should expect a deeply thought-provoking and highly original case for free-market economics.

“Brooks will make a case that free enterprise represents the best hope for addressing poverty and global inequality,” Straughn says, explaining how that belief extends to the marketplace of ideas. “In the true Westminster spirit, he’s a defender of civil dialogue and mutual respect in the exchange of differing viewpoints.”

Brooks will stay for 30 minutes following his lecture to answer questions from the audience.

Sponsored in conjunction with the Olin School of Business at Washington University in St. Louis, MO, Brauer Lectures seek to highlight the leadership characteristics of its speakers. Featured lecturers are encouraged to discuss how their values guide their daily lives while also highlighting the importance free-market economics.

The Brauer Lecture Series is made possible by a generous gift from Stephen F., ’67 ΦΔΘ, and Camilla T. Brauer of St. Louis, MO.

For more information on the Brauer Lecture Series, please visit our website here or email Dr. Jeremy Straughn at

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Sarah Rummel Backer

Sarah Rummel Backer is the Director of Media Relations and Senior Writer at Westminster College in Fulton, Missouri. A proud Westminster graduate, Sarah has more than 20 years of experience in marketing and strategic communications in the areas of higher education, medicine, agriculture, and the private business sector.