Esteemed American historian and author Ronald C. White, Jr., visited campus and the Pacific Northwest this spring for a series of lectures based on his award-winning and bestselling books on Abraham Lincoln, including A. Lincoln: A Biography (2009), and his latest, American Ulysses: A Life of Ulysses S. Grant (2016), which explores the life of the famous general and 18th president of the United States.
During White's visit, he taught a month-long history course; presented the Simpson-Duvall Endowed Lecture on Ulysses S. Grant; co-hosted a film viewing of Lincoln (2012) with Professor of English Leonard Oakland; preached at Whitworth Presbyterian Church; and gave lectures in Spokane and the Puget Sound area on Lincoln's moral and ethical leadership.
While discussing White's time on campus, Professor of History Dale Soden expressed what an unusual advantage it was for students to meet and learn from this top expert. "Ron White is one of the nation's leading presidential historians, and his work on Lincoln has been acclaimed by the best Lincoln scholars in the country. His new work on Ulysses S. Grant is already a New York Times bestseller," Soden says. "The chance for students to engage with him for a month is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. He is a superb writer, an exceptional historian, and a gracious human being. On top of that, he loves Whitworth."
White served and encouraged students, faculty and staff from 1974-81 as Whitworth's chaplain, as a tenured associate professor and chair of the religion & philosophy department, and as founder and first director of the Whitworth Institute of Ministry. He is currently a fellow at the Huntington Library, in San Marino, Calif., and a senior fellow of the Trinity Forum, in Washington, D.C. He lives with his wife, Cynthia, in La Cañada, Calif.