By Pablo Sanchez
Much goes into planning the Dillon Lecture Series, which brings four renowned speakers, to Hutchinson Community College annually.
Robin Woodworth – Administrative Assistant to the President – handles all of HutchCC President Carter File’s appointments. Woodworth is helping out with the Board of Trustees and helps out with the lecture series. She contacts a potential speaker’s agent to see if they are willing to give a lecture.
Woodworth has been with the college for seven years and working in File’s office for two years
“Dillon Lecture Series is an organization that started 36 years ago by two ladies in the community, Jeanette Mull and Barbara Peirce, and they wanted to do something based on K-State that had a lecture series, something they can bring to Hutch,” Woodworth said. “We have four speakers a year that come in, on a variety of topics, and the community gets together.
“There’s different topics. We don’t try to focus on any one thing. It’s just who the community will suggest. The community will ask a name, and we will look into it and see if they would be available, if they’re in budget range and what the community thinks. In the past lecture years, there were five or six speakers but, because of the increase in cost of the speaking fees, it takes a lot to get four.”
As far getting a speaker selected, the event organizers come across someone in the news that sounds interesting, or based on a book they wrote.
“We have several people in Kansas, speakers that we have connection with. Dave Dillon came from the Dillon family and was the CEO of Kroger at the same and he came and spoke,” said Woodworth, adding that other Hutchinson natives like Shawn James have been among the series’ speakers.
The community and Woodworth are in the process of selecting speakers for 2019, and if anyone has someone that they think that would be interesting, she would email it to the community she would like to get some speakers for 2019 because they will start their patron drive in late fall and will want to present to them so they want to be a patron.
Annually the community will spend around $4,000-5,000 on a speaker but, yearly the community will spend $45,000-50,000
Dillon Lecture Series
Tickets: Free for students with ID. General admission tickets are $10
Rest of 2018 lecture schedule: April 17, astronaut Scott Kelly; actor RJ Mitte, who battles cerebral-palsy; flight attendant Doreen Walsh, who was on the US Airways flight that landed on the Hudson River.