12/7-American Conversations – Thomas Jefferson: The Art Of Power By Jon Meacham


December 7, 2012

Thomas Jefferson hated confrontation, and yet his understanding of power and of human nature enabled him to move men and to marshal ideas, to learn from his mistakes, and to prevail. Passionate about many things—women, his family, books, science, architecture, gardens, friends, Monticello, Paris—Jefferson loved America most, and he strove again and again, despite fierce opposition, to realize his vision: the creation, survival, and success of popular government in America. Jon Meacham lets us see Jefferson’s world as Jefferson himself saw it, and to appreciate how Jefferson found the means to endure and win in the face of partisan division, economic uncertainty, and external threat. Drawing on archives in the United States, England, and France, as well as unpublished Jefferson presidential papers, Meacham presented Jefferson as the most successful political leader of the early republic, and perhaps in all of American history.



11/14-Arthur Vandenberg & The Lost Art Of Bipartisan Statemanship


November 14, 2012

The Hauenstein Center teamed up with the National Endowment for the Humanities and World Affairs Councils of America to present a national forum on Michigan’s most famous senator, Arthur Vandenberg. The Grand Rapids native was a principled Republican who knew how to work with leading Democrats – including Presidents Franklin Roosevelt and Harry Truman – to forge a bipartisan foreign policy in the 1940s and 1950s. Renown historians Richard Norton Smith, H. W. Brands, Kiron Skinner and others joined with Vandenberg biographer Hank Meijer to explore the lessons of Vandenberg’s statesmanship for our times. The event was open to public in West Michigan, and was webstreamed live to some 100 World Affairs Councils around the U.S.

Hank Meijer on the Life of Arthur Vandenberg



11/7-Wheelhouse Talks – Fred Antczak


November 7, 2012

Culture-builder, teacher, and manager of change at GVSU. Dean of CLAS. Executive director of RSA. Native of Grand Rapids’s west side, who has served as an award-winning teacher-scholar at the universities of Virginia, California-Berkeley, and Iowa. Notre Dame B.A., Chicago Ph.D., and lifelong student of baseball.


11/1-Cook Leadership Academy – Leader Lens


November 1, 2012

In this innovative series of leadership seminars, Hauenstein Center Director, Gleaves Whitney explored the history, theories, and tools of leadership, along with their practical application. These theories were then applied in the guest presentations of three other Cook Leadership Academy fellows. These presentations gave these six fellows the opportunity to gain valuable public speaking experience while also giving other fellows an understanding of how their peers are applying their leadership skills in their own lives.



10/29-American Conversations – Election 2012 – A Watershed in American History?


October 29, 2012

Whatever the breadth and depth of their disagreements, President Barack Obama and Governor Mitt Romney concur: the presidential election in 2012 gaves voters a clear choice between two very different philosophies and policy approaches to a host of challenges facing the U.S. Whether the debate is over how to handle staggering debts, the anemic economy, foreign hot spots, or thorny cultural issues, the candidates presented vastly different game plans for moving America forward. Experts from the community – Kevin Den Dulk, Paul Isely, Erika King, and Matt McLogan – explored and debated the issues leading up to this historic election. Gleaves Whitney moderated and add historic perspective.

Original Invitation



10/10-Wheelhouse Talks – Yang Kim


October 10, 2012

Visionary visual communicator and executive at Peopledesign. Clients: Amway, Herman Miller, and Steelcase; GRAM, UICA, and ArtPrize. Empathetic, strategic creative who aims to change what people think, feel, and do. Brand Identity Essentials author; graphic design juror; and mother of Bruno, Toki, and Lulu.

Original Invitation


9/13-The Untold Story of the U.S. Constitution


September 13, 2012

If citizens think politics are nasty nowadays, they were arguably nastier in 1787 when America’s new frame of government was bruited about.

The statesmen who debated the architecture of freedom were not above petty politics, yet somehow they sorted through their personality differences and diverse regional interests to compromise on the essentials. Indeed, the convention offers valuable lessons in bipartisanship that desperately need heeding today. In a story that never grows old in the telling, Gleaves Whitney looked at the challenges the founders stared down on their world historic mission, that of creating a New Republic.



9/12-Wheelhouse Talks – Bill Holsinger-Robinson


September 12, 2012

Design-thinking entrepreneur, bringing big ideas to life. Credits: SEED Collective, 5×5 Night, ArtPrize. Experienced collaborator, founder, executive. Passionate problem solver, storyteller, consultant. Serving as Entrepreneurship and Innovation Chair at GVSU, strategist at Peopledesign, and host of TEDxGrandRapids.



4/26-Is Christianity Good for American Politics?


April 26, 2012

This issue was certainly apparent in the controversy surrounding the HHS bill. This being the case, a debate over the role of Christianity in American politics could not have been more pertinent.

Susan Jacoby, program director at The Center for Inquiry and author of New York Times bestseller, The Age of American Unreason (2008)and Alger Hiss and The Battle for History (2009), is an independent scholar whose work focuses on American intellectual history. Jacoby has been a contributor for more than 25 years, on topics including law, religion, medicine, aging, women’s rights, political dissent in the Soviet Union, and Russian literature, to a wide range of periodicals and newspapers. Her articles and essays have appeared in The New York Times Magazine, Washington Post Book World, Los Angeles Times Book Review, Newsday, Harper’s, The Nation, Vogue, The American Prospect, Mother Jones, and the AARP Magazine, among other publications.

Dinesh D’souza, recent author of “What’s so Great About Christianity?” and president of the King’s College, has been called one of the “top young public-policy makers in the country” by Investor’s Business Daily. The New York Times Magazine named him one of America’s most influential conservative thinkers. D’Souza’s articles have appeared in virtually every major magazine and newspaper, including the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, The Atlantic Monthly, Vanity Fair, New Republic, and National Review. He has appeared on numerous television programs, including the Today Show, Nightline, The News Hour, O’Reilly Factor, Moneyline, and Hannity and Colmes.



4/11-The Wheelhouse Talks – Rick Devos


April 11, 2012

Rick DeVos | Entrepreneurial, idea-producing, TED-type wunderkind who’s helping spark an intellectual, cultural, and economic renaissance in West Michigan. Ventures include Pomegranate Studios, Momentum, TheCommon.org, Spout.com, Boxed Water Is Better Water, 5×5 Night, and ArtPrize.



3/14-The Wheelhouse Talks Mayra Martinez


March 14, 2012

Twenty-something community advocate and entrepreneur who juggles four cell phones for the sake of her four family restaurants, catering operation, and tree cutting business. Founder of Mi Raza Association of Commerce, and one of Grand Rapids Business Journal’s 40 under Forty.



3/6-War President: James Madison – Don Hickey


March 6, 2012

Having published numerous books and articles on the war, Don Hickey’s knowledge of the era is sure to provide you with new information as we commemorate the bicentennial.

In this talk, he dispelled the many misconceptions that distort our view of America’s second war with Great Britain. Embracing military, naval, political, economic, and diplomatic analyses, Hickey looked carefully at how the war was fought and how it was remembered thereafter. Hickey peeled away fantasies and embellishments to explore why certain myths gained currency and how they contributed to the way that the United States and Canada view themselves and each other.



2/29-Ask Gleaves Leadership Seminar – Leverage Crisis


February 29, 2012

Be prepared. The story of the leader is often a morality play. There are countless cautionary tales from history — from Cicero and Cato to Admiral James Stockdale. We also recognized that leaders are laughers: the importance of a sense of humor in a crisis and throughout your career.



2/21-The Big Scrum: How TR Saved Football


February 21, 2012

John Miller’s story is about college football in its infancy and the culture clash it inspired.

John J. Miller shared the intriguing, never-before-fully-told story of how Theodore Roosevelt helped to save the game that would become America’s most popular sport. Based on extensive research and his book — The Big Scrum — It’s about a vibrant cast of characters, TR above all, and presidential foresight that set the game on a path to persist and thrive these 142 years. John J. Miller is director of the Dow Journalism Program at Hillsdale College. He is the author of novels and nonfiction, who writes for the Wall Street Journal, National Review, and other national publications.



2/7-Pocketbook Predictions for the 2012 Election – Patrick Anderson


February 7, 2012

Pocketbook variables are almost always good indicators of electoral outcomes.

Political scientists have long known that “pocketbook issues” strongly affect the fortunes of presidents and other political leaders. Economists studying this relationship have established that certain economic factors—such as growth in income, inflation, and unemployment—directly affect the votes of the incumbent party in the presidential elections. Other institutional factors, such as the number of terms a party has occupied the oval office, also appear to affect voting patterns.

On February 7, the Hauenstein Center presented one of the nation’s leading experts on economic conditions and voter behavior, economist Patrick L. Anderson. Mr. Anderson will outline the “pocketbook” model of American voting behavior in U.S. presidential elections, which includeed only economic and institutional factors largely known in advance of the election. The model explained about 75 percent of the variation of the popular vote in presidential elections since 1916. In 2004, the National Association of Business Economists awarded Mr. Anderson and his co-author Ilhan Geckil for “outstanding writing in business economics” for their article “Pocketbook Issues and Presidential Elections,” which outlines this approach.

The track record of this simple model in recent elections is remarkable. In 2000, it suggested a very close election, with the incumbent party gaining a tiny plurality of the popular vote. In 2004, it indicated that economic conditions favored a narrow re-election for the incumbent President. In 2008, the same model suggested that the incumbent party would lose the White House. Thus, in the last three elections, the “pocketbook” model proved quite accurate in predicting the actual voting behavior of the American electorate.

In this presentation, Patrick L. Anderson outlined what the “pocketbook” model says about the 2012 national election, as well as discuss how states like Michigan tend to react to economic conditions by “voting their wallet.”

Anderson, along with co-author Ilhan Geckil, intend to update their 2012 election analysis as economic data for 2012 become available. These updates will be available at www.AndersonEconomicGroup.com. Please click here for the November 2011 preview release.



2/1-The Wheelhouse Talks – Andy Dillon


February 1, 2012

Politician, famed policy wonk, and Snyder cabineteer, with board and courtroom credentials. Keeps allies and opponents on their toes. Current state treasurer, 2010 Democratic gubernatorial candidate, and former speaker of the Michigan House of Representatives.



1/18-The Wheelhouse Talks – Marsha Rappley


January 18, 2012

Health care leader and teacher who rose from nurse’s aide to registered nurse to pediatric neurologist, before joining the academia. Athena Award winner, ADHD expert, and cancer survivor who serves as dean of Michigan State University’s College of Human Medicine.



1/13-Building Your Innate Leadership Skills – H James Williams


January 13, 2012

Dean H James Williams – Building Your Innate Leadership Skills



1/11-Lyndon B. Johnson – Gleaves Whitney


January 1, 2012

The Hauenstein Center’s own Gleaves Whitney spoke on the 36th President of the United States, Lyndon B. Johnson.



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