Laura Bush to speak at Wayland event
May 30, 2015
PLAINVIEW – Wayland Baptist University welcomes former First Lady Laura Bush as guest speaker for the Willson Lectures Series and scholarship luncheon on Oct. 21, 2015.
Mrs. Bush will speak during the regularly scheduled chapel service at 11 a.m. While admission to chapel is free and open to the public, tickets will be required. Ticket information will be made available at a later date.
Chapel will be followed by a scholarship fundraiser/box-lunch event where Mrs. Bush will participate in a question-and-answer session with Wayland President Dr. Paul Armes. Tickets must be purchased for admission to the luncheon, and sponsorship tables will be available. Sponsorships may be purchased at the beginning of August and individual tickets will go on sale in September. Ticket pricing will be made available at a later date. All proceeds will benefit student scholarships at Wayland.
Established in 1950, the Willson Lecture Series features topics related to “Applied Christianity” and “Christian Home and Family Life.” Mrs. Bush will speak on “Reflections from the White House.”
For decades, Mrs. Bush has championed key issues in the fields of education, health care, and human rights. The author of the bestselling memoir, Spoken From The Heart, Mrs. Bush also founded both the Texas Book Festival and the National Book Festival in Washington D.C. Today, as the Chair of the Women’s Initiative at the George W. Bush Institute, Mrs. Bush continues her work on global healthcare innovations, empowering women in emerging democracies, education reform, and supporting the men and women who have served in America’s military.
Born in Midland, Texas to Jenna and Harold Welch, Laura Bush holds a degree in education and a master’s degree in library science. She taught in public schools in Dallas, Houston, and Austin, and worked as a public school librarian. In 1977, she married George W. Bush. The Bushes are the parents of twin daughters, Barbara and Jenna, and grandparents of Mila Hager.
The Willson Lectures were established by gifts from Floydada residents James M. and Mavis Willson. Successful businesspersons and active community residents, the Willsons were dedicated Methodist laypersons who were active in their local church. In addition, Dr. Willson served as a trustee at McMurry University, Southern Methodist University, and the former Methodist Hospital in Lubbock.
Willson was the recipient of several awards and honors, including honorary doctorates from Texas Wesleyan University and McMurry University. He was given a humanities award from Southwestern College and a merit award from Wayland. Wayland also nominated him for the Freedom Foundation Award in 1960, which he received in Valley Forge, Pa. He participated in numerous civic organizations, including the West Texas Chamber of Commerce, Rotary Club, the Masons and the Shriners.