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Intellect

BYU Honored Alumni to give lectures during Homecoming 2010

Brigham Young University's colleges will honor successful alumni for professional excellence during Homecoming 2010, and they will give college lectures as part of their award. Most lectures will begin at 11 a.m. Thursday, Oct. 7.

Education

Elder Jay E. Jensen (BA ’67), of American Fork, Utah, has focused both his career and service on The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He earned both a master’s degree in Church history and doctrine and a doctorate in curriculum and instruction at BYU. He spent his career in the Church Educational System and at the Missionary Training Center. In 1992, he was called to the Quorum of the Seventy and now serves in the Presidency of the Seventy. 

Lecture: “A Work of Words,” 115 McKay Building

Engineering and Technology

L. Douglas Smoot (BS ’57), of Provo, has spent 47 of his last 56 years on the BYU campus — from student to dean of the College of Engineering. He spent seven years leading the successful effort to preserve the historic Brigham Young Academy as Provo’s new library, and among his honors are the BYU Distinguished Service and the Karl G. Maeser Distinguished Faculty Lecturer Awards. 

Lecture: “Energy and Climate Change,” Joseph Smith Building Auditorium

Family, Home and Social Sciences

Ambassador Robert R. King (BA ’66), of McLean, Va., is a special envoy for North Korea human rights issues at the U.S. Department of State. Prior to his confirmation by the U.S. Senate in November 2009, he was chief of staff to U.S. Rep. Tom Lantos of California and staff director of the House Foreign Affairs Committee. King holds a doctorate in international relations from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy. 

Lecture: “Human Rights and U.S. Foreign Policy,” 250 Spencer W. Kimball Tower

Fine Arts and Communications

Kathleen Parsons Debenham (BA ’74), of Orem, Utah, entered BYU as a dance major and there earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees. She co-directed Contemporary Danceworks and is a certified movement analyst. At Utah Valley University she has served as founding chair of the Dance Department and interim dean of the School of the Arts. She is now the UVU’s associate vice president for academic affairs. 

Lecture: “Dancing Life — Perspectives on Art and Living,” Madsen Recital Hall

Humanities

As a partner with Vinson & Elkins, Robert L. Kimball (BA ’83), of Dallas, Texas, works with securities offerings, mergers and acquisitions and other investment activities in U.S. and international settings. Among other honors, he has been recognized in “The Best Lawyers in America” for expertise in corporate law and project finance and in mergers and acquisitions and in “Texas Monthly” as a Texas Super Lawyer in corporate law. 

Lecture: “Running Red Lights in Latin America: Cultural Challenges in International Transactions,” B092 Joseph F. Smith Building

Law

Annette Wanlass Jarvis (BA ’77), of Salt Lake City, earned her law degree from BYU in 1979 when relatively few women were practicing law. She negotiated part-time jobs to accommodate her family and educated several firms in accommodating flexible work schedules. Jarvis is a partner at Dorsey & Whitney in Salt Lake City and co-head of the firmwide Finance and Restructuring Department.

Lecture: Oct. 22, 10 a.m., J. Reuben Clark Law School Moot Courtroom

Life Sciences

Val C. Sheffield (BS ’74), of Iowa City, Iowa, earned a doctorate and medical degree from the University of Chicago and received postgraduate training at the University of California, San Francisco. He is on the faculty at the University of Iowa College of Medicine, where he has developed a highly successful human genetics research program, and his laboratory is recognized worldwide for work in identifying genes involved in hereditary blindness. 

Lecture: “Typhoons and Works of God: The Search for Causes and Cures of Hereditary Blindness,” 446 Thomas L. Martin Building

Management

Allan E. O’Bryant, of Mercer Island, Wash., is a member of the BYU President’s Leadership Council. His career includes positions with KPMG, where he served as president of Aflac International and as deputy chief financial officer of Aflac, and with Yunzei Capital Management, where he was president and CEO. He is currently CEO of RGA Reinsurance Company in Japan.

Lecture:  W408-W410 Tanner Building

Nursing

Laura Poe (BS ’85), of South Jordan, Utah, began her nursing career as a staff nurse at Holy Cross Hospital and progressed through Utah nursing leadership, including her assignment as a bureau manager with the Utah State Division of Occupational and Professional Licensing. A much-honored professional, Poe is listed in “Who’s Who in American Nursing” and was named Professional of the Year by the Utah Citizen’s League for Nursing. 

Lecture: “How Did a Nice Girl Like Me End up in a Position Like This?” B002 Joseph F. Smith Building

Physical and Mathematical Sciences

Edward W. Gholdston (Ph.D. ’82), of Newbury Park, Calif., completed a doctorate in physics at BYU and began his career with Texas Instruments in Dallas, Texas. He accepted a position with Rockwell International in 1985 to work on the International Space Station program. For the past four years he has been a deputy program manager for the Orion Crew Exploration Vehicle project.

Lecture: “Space: Exploring the High Frontier With Humans, Robots and Telescopes,” 1170 Talmage Building

For more information, visit homecoming.byu.edu.

Writer: Charlene Winters

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