Lincoln Land Community College invites the public to its 9th annual Lincoln Lecture Feb. 13 at 9 a.m. in the Trutter Center on the Springfield campus, 5250 Shepherd Road. Commemorating the 208th birthday of President Lincoln and the 50th anniversary of LLCC’s founding, the program features a panel of Lincoln experts including Alan Lowe, executive director, Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum; Kathryn Harris, president of the Abraham Lincoln Association; and Samuel Wheeler, Ph.D., Illinois state historian; with moderator John Squibb, Ph.D., LLCC faculty emeritus. There is no charge for the program.
Panelists will address the topic of “Working Together for the Lincoln Legacy” and provide a wide-ranging conversation about the 16th president’s life and the many ways organizations today are working together to keep the Lincoln legacy alive.
Alan C. Lowe obtained his Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts in history at the University of Kentucky (UK). In 1989, Lowe joined the staff of the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley, Calif. as an archivist. In 1992, he moved to the Office of Presidential Libraries at the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) in Washington, D.C. In the Office of Presidential Libraries, Lowe helped to oversee many presidential libraries located throughout the nation. During part of this time, he also served as interim director of the Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library in Hyde Park, N.Y.
From 2003 to 2009, Lowe served as the founding executive director of the Howard H. Baker, Jr. Center for Public Policy at the University of Tennessee. From 2009 to 2016, he served as founding director of the George W. Bush Presidential Library and Museum. In July 2016, Lowe was appointed executive director of the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum.
Throughout his career, Lowe has served in officer, board and committee roles for a number of organizations. He currently serves on the executive board for Southern Methodist University (SMU) Libraries and on the advisory board of SMU’s Maguire Center for Ethics and Responsibility. He serves on the advisory board for the UK Institute for Rural Journalism and Community Issues and also for UK’s Department of History. Some of his past roles include serving as a representative of former Senate Majority Leader William Frist on the Advisory Committee for the Records of Congress and past president of the Association of Centers for the Study of Congress. In 2014, he was awarded the Public Service Award for Outstanding Leadership by the Dallas-Fort Worth Federal Executive Board.
Kathryn M. Harris received her bachelor’s degree at Southern Illinois University-Carbondale and a Master of Library Science from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She began her library career at the Lincoln Library, before moving to Florida to serve in a supervisory capacity at Florida International University, Miami. She has held managerial and supervisory positions at the Illinois State Library and the Southern Illinois University School of Medicine Library in Springfield. After more than 25 years of service, she retired in 2015 as the library services director of the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library.
Kathryn M. Harris is the first woman and the first African-American to serve as the President of the Abraham Lincoln Association since its inception in 1909. She also currently serves on the board of the Springfield and Central Illinois African-American History Museum. She has served on the board of the Illinois Library Association and the Consortium of Academic and Research Libraries in Illinois (CARLI). She is a past president of the Sangamon County Historical Society and has also served on the board of the Illinois Humanities Council (now Illinois Humanities).
Harris is a recipient of a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Illinois State Historical Society. In 2015, she was recognized by the Springfield Rotary Club as a Paul Harris Fellow, was honored as a Woman of Influence by the Springfield Business Journal and recognized by the Society of Public Administrators.
Harris presents one-woman first-person shows which honor four historic 19th century African-American women: Harriet Tubman, Jarena Lee, Phoebe Florville, and Elizabeth Keckley.
Samuel Wheeler, Ph.D. is the 10th state historian in Illinois history. He received a bachelor’s degree in history from Illinois State University, a master’s in public and applied history from University of Illinois-Springfield and a doctorate in history from Southern Illinois University-Carbondale. Wheeler specializes in the history of Illinois, the Civil War era, and the life and legacy of Abraham Lincoln. Over the past 17 years, he has worked in the field of public history assisting museums, historic sites and historical societies to execute their missions effectively and efficiently, in addition to working on documentary editing projects. He regularly speaks to diverse audiences across the country, writes for scholarly journals and popular magazines, and offers commentary to newspaper, radio and television outlets.
Wheeler’s past positions include research associate for the Robert Todd Lincoln Collection of Abraham Lincoln Papers at the Library of Congress, director of academic affairs for the Illinois Community College Board and lecturer at SIU. As the Illinois state historian, Dr. Wheeler serves as the historian of record for the state’s 56 historic sites managed by the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency and is the director of Research and Collections at the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum.
John Squibb, Ph.D., is an LLCC professor emeritus of history with a doctorate in American Constitution history. He is the 2002 Drs. Raymond and Ann Pearson Master Teacher award recipient.
Other Lincoln activities include:
Springfield campus – Feb. 13: Abe Lincoln Birthday Celebration and Homecoming Kickoff, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., A. Lincoln Commons. The event includes a presentation by Fritz Klein actor and Abraham Lincoln impersonator, and Kathryn Harris, in addition to Lincoln trivia, refreshments and giveaways.
LLCC-Beardstown – week of Feb. 13: A short essay contest regarding little known facts about Lincoln is being held. In addition, there will be a Lincoln photo booth and prizes awarded to winners of a Lincoln trivia quiz and a pennies-in-the-jar guessing game.
LLCC-Jacksonville – Feb. 20: Mike Anderson, recognized educator, storyteller and nationally known musician will perform from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Students will participate in games that were popular during President Lincoln’s day and compete in a Lincoln trivia contest.
LLCC-Litchfield – weeks of Feb. 6 and 13: LLCC-Litchfield staff is visiting local elementary schools and reading books to the students about Abraham Lincoln. Students at the centers will be provided information on local Lincoln attractions and served refreshments Feb. 15.
LLCC-Taylorville – weeks of Feb. 6 and 13: LLCC-Taylorville staff is visiting local elementary schools and reading books to the children about Abraham Lincoln. Students at the centers will be provided information on local Lincoln attractions and served refreshments Feb. 14.