New Fellowship Honors Sondra and Morey Myers

The University will establish The Sondra H’87 and Morey Myers H’12 Distinguished Fellowship in the Humanities and Civic Engagement.
The University of Scranton will formally announce the establishment of The Sondra H’87 and Morey Myers H’12 Distinguished Fellowship in the Humanities and Civic Engagement at a public lecture on Oct. 24.
The University of Scranton will formally announce the establishment of The Sondra H’87 and Morey Myers H’12 Distinguished Fellowship in the Humanities and Civic Engagement at a public lecture on Oct. 24.

A newly established fellowship at The University of Scranton will honor two highly-regarded community leaders from the region, Sondra and Morey Myers, J.D. Through their generous support and tireless work, both have encouraged civic engagement and cultural excellence for the betterment of the University, the city of Scranton, and the country.  

The Sondra H’87 and Morey Myers H’12 Distinguished Visiting Fellowship in the Humanities and Civic Engagement, housed in the University’s Slattery Center for the Humanities, will help to advance the University’s efforts to bring renowned scholars, artists, and thinkers to Scranton to share their work and enrich cultural and civic activity at The University and in Scranton.

“Sondra and Morey Myers represent the profound potential inherent in the humanities to enable and encourage civic engagement for the good of others,” said Rev. Scott R. Pilarz, S.J., president. “Their work has enriched the life of the University and the lives of so many in our community and nation, and we are proud to name a fellowship in the humanities in their honor as part of the Slattery Center for the Humanities.”

In August 2018, University of Scranton philosophy professor Matthew Meyer, Ph.D., and David N. Myers, Ph.D., Sady and Ludwig Kahn Professor of Jewish History, UCLA, and president, New Israel Fund, initiated the effort to begin a fellowship in honor of his parents. Through what Dr. Myers calls a “labor of love” and the support of the University, the fellowship has raised $450,000 to date through the generous support of dear friends, family and associates of the Myers’.

Dr. Myers said the extraordinary response “honors his parents’ lifelong commitment to the humanities and civic engagement in service of democracy, justice, and enlightenment in society.”  He said the support also affirms the University’s strong commitment to the humanities.

“A university can never be seen as isolated and disconnected. It can and must be deeply committed to society and its betterment,’ said Dr. Myers.

The fellowship will be formally launched on Thursday, Oct. 24, at a lecture by Wayne Winborne, executive director of the Institute of Jazz Studies at Rutgers University-Newark, which houses the largest archive of jazz history in the world. The lecture, which is presented free of charge and open to the public will begin at 5 p.m. in the Moskovitz Theater in The DeNaples Center. The following day, Friday, Oct. 25, the University will host a Festival of Ideas with distinguished scholars and activists discussing the way in which law, humanities and civic engagement can address the crisis of democracy in the 21st century. The panel discussions, which will occur throughout the day in the Pearn Auditorium of Brennan Hall, are also open to the public free of charge.

Sondra Myers

Sondra Myers is a renowned national leader in the arts and humanities who serves as senior fellow for international, civic and cultural projects and director of the Schemel Forum at The University of Scranton. She has written, edited and co-edited several books, including, “The People’s Choice: Public Education and American Democracy,” “The Interdependence Handbook,” “The New Rwanda: Prosperity and the Public Good,” and “The Democracy Reader,” among others. She has presented programs on democracy and civic engagement in several countries and has organized and moderated symposia on culture and public policy for academic institutions and cultural organizations throughout the United States.

Before joining the University, Sondra Myers served as a senior associate at the University of Maryland’s Democracy Collaborative and as the Rapoport Democracy Fellow at the Walt Whitman Center at Rutgers University. She served as special assistant to the chairman for partnerships at the National Endowment for the Humanities and was cultural advisor to Pennsylvania Governor Robert P. Casey. She was appointed by President Obama to the Commission on Presidential Scholars in 2011 and was appointed by President Carter to the U.S. Commission on Fine Arts in 1980.

Sondra Myers is a graduate of Connecticut College and a member of Phi Beta Kappa. She has been a member and vice chair of the University’s Board of Trustees and received an honorary degree from the University in 1987.

Morey Myers

Morey Myers is one of the most distinguished and respected members of the Pennsylvania state bar.  He is a practitioner in state and federal court in civil and criminal law with an emphasis on complex litigation and civil rights matters. Myers is a founding partner of Myers, Brier and Kelly’s (MBK) and today serves actively of counsel at the firm. Previously, he served as general counsel to Pennsylvania Governor Robert P. Casey and general counsel for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

From 1990 to 1995, he was partner in the Philadelphia-based firm of Schnader, Harrison, Segal and Lewis and has served as advisor and counsel to businesses and individuals on all aspects of legal/commercial matters. He is a fellow of the American Bar Association; former commissioner, National Conference of Commissioners on Uniform State Laws; and contributing author of the American Bar Association Handbook on Antitrust Grand Jury Investigations and the Temple Law Quarterly. He has contributed to the Harvard University-Brandeis University Cooperative Research Project for the Development of Israel Law.

During the civil rights movement, Morey Myers was among the few lawyers who traveled to the South as a volunteer to provide legal services for those engaged in civil disobedience, specifically in St. Augustine, Florida, in 1964 and in Mississippi in 1965.

He was a consultant to the President’s Commission on Campus Unrest; chief counsel to Pennsylvania’s Milk Control Commission; and chairman of the Hearing Committee of the Disciplinary Board of the Pennsylvania Supreme Court. He serves frequently as a mediator in the United States Federal Court. He has been a visiting lecturer at several colleges, including Yale University, Rutgers University, The University of Scranton, Haverford College, University of Wyoming and Temple University.

Morey Myers is a graduate of the Yale University School of Law and Syracuse University. He served on the University’s Board of Trustees and as chair of the Commitment to Excellence Campaign at Scranton. He received an honorary degree from the University in 2012.

About the Gail and Francis Slattery Center for Humanities

In May 2019, the University established the Gail and Francis Slattery Center for Humanities to advance the University’s liberal arts tradition and enhance the core role it plays in the formation of students to become “men and women for others.” The Center, named after the parents of benefactor and current University Trustee James M. Slattery ’86 and his wife, Betsy, will serve as a national model for humanities in action. Through the Center’s programs, elevated discourse on an array of topics and civic engagement will be encouraged by members of the University community, as well as by residents throughout the greater Scranton area.

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