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OKC Town Hall Lecture Series announces 2016-2017 speakers with Downton Abbey author Jessica Fellowes

The 2016 OKC Town Hall Lectures Series will feature guest speakers (from top left clockwise) Jessica Fellowes, Charles Payne, Celia Sandys, Peggy Noonan, Ted Fishman and Joshua Landis. Photos provided.
The 2016 OKC Town Hall Lectures Series will feature guest speakers (from top left clockwise) Jessica Fellowes, Charles Payne, Celia Sandys, Peggy Noonan, Ted Fishman and Joshua Landis. Photos provided.

By Darla Shelden
City Sentinel Reporter

The Oklahoma City Town Hall Lecture Series, in its 84th consecutive season, will feature six nationally and internationally known experts who will speak on topics ranging from the television series Downton Abbey, financial advice, Winston Churchill, American history, China, and the Middle East.

The Lecture Series will be held at 10:30 a.m. on the third Thursday of each month at St. Luke’s United Methodist Church, 222 NW 15th Street.

The OKC Lecture Series was originated by the Junior League of Oklahoma City in 1933.

“The popular lecture series was conceived to enhance life in Oklahoma by providing a forum for nationally recognized speakers.”  OKC Town Hall President George McDowell said.

“Our mission over the years has been to inform, enlighten and entertain the audience with a variety of timely topics.”  

The lectures are held the third Thursday of the months of September, October, November, February, March and April.

On September 15, Jessica Fellowes will give a lecture on her companion books to the hit television series Downton Abbey.

Fellowes has authored Downton Abbey A Celebration, The Wit and Wisdom of Downton Abbey, The Chronicles of Downton Abbey, A Year in the Life of Downton Abbey, The Chronicles of Downton Abbey and The World of Downton Abbey and has been acknowledged on the Best Seller list by The Sunday Times and New York Times.

She has also done in-depth research into the social history of the early 20th century, particularly the changes that women were experiencing and the great leaps in technology that were occurring 100 years ago and how similar it feels today.  Jessica will discuss real life inspirations and the historical significance of Downton Abbey.

Fox Business Network contributor Charles Payne will speak on October 20 about “Making Money with Charles Payne.” Formerly co-host of Varney & Company, Payne is also a contributor to Fox News Channel, frequently appearing on Cashin’ In, Cavuto on Business and Bulls and Bears.

Payne hosts his own daily syndicated radio talk show and he is the Chief Executive Officer and Principal Analyst of Wall Street Week, Inc. which he founded in 1991.  WSSI provides information to over 120,000 registered subscribers in more than 60 countries as well as several of the largest bank/brokerage firms. In 2007 he authored Act Fast, Be Smart and Get Rich.

On November 17, Celia Sandys will discuss “Memories Of My Grandfather, Growing Up With Churchill.” She has published two books, which include historical research along with personal anecdotes regarding time spent with her famous grandfather in England and abroad.

Her most recent book, We Shall Not Fail-The Inspiring Leadership of Winston Churchill, describes the principles of leadership, which allowed Churchill to advance England and the rest of the world to victory in World War II.  Her book, Chasing Churchill, is the basis for a PBS and Discovery Channel documentary.

“A Morning With Peggy Noonan” will take place on February 16. A Wall Street Journal columnist, Noonan is the author of eight books on American history and culture.  A former producer for CBS News, she has written for The National Journal and Forbes magazine.  Noonan also served as special assistant to Presidents George H.W, Bush and Ronald Reagan,

On March 16, author Ted Fishman will talk about “China, Inc., The Graying of the World & Friendship.”  His bestselling book China Inc. How the Rise of the Next Superpower Challenges America and the World describes the effects of China’s global business influence.

Fishman is known for his ability to convert complex topics into understandable subjects for the general audience.  His major focus is on how global economic trends impact people’s everyday lives. He is currently working on a new book on the value of friendship and its importance to smaller families and a globally connected world.

Director of the Center for Middle East Studies and Associate Professor of the University of Oklahoma’s College of International Studies, Dr. Joshua Landis will discuss “Syria and the Middle East” on April 20. His daily newsletter, “Syria Comment” a daily newsletter, attracts over 100,000 readers a month. A frequent consultant to government agencies in Washington D.C., he is recognized as the USA’s foremost expert on Syria having lived there for over 14 years.

Educated at Harvard and Princeton, Landis has addressed the Woodrow Wilson Institute, Brookings Institute, USIP, Middle East Institute and the Council on Foreign Relations.

OKC Town Hall season tickets for all six lectures are $75 and may be purchased online at Checks payable to OKC Town Hall can be sent to P.O. Box 20632, OKC, OK 73156.   Single lecture tickets are $25.  For more information, call 405-202-4262 or email [email protected].

“We are grateful to our sponsors and donors to the speakers fund so we can maintain the quality of our speakers,” McDowell said.

A speaker luncheon with a Q&A session will follow each lecture at St. Luke’s Christian Life Center. Season tickets for the six luncheons are $99 and individual tickets are $17.

For more luncheon information call 405-755-2362 or email [email protected].   To learn more, call George McDowell at 405-826-3335.


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