J. George Jones, Jr. and Velma Rife Jones Lecture Series
About the Lecture Series
The J. George Jones, Jr. and Velma Rife Jones Guest Lecture Series was established in 1996 with the J. George Jones, Jr. and Velma Rife Jones Memorial Fund. A generous gift of $1 million from J. George Jones, Jr. and Velma Rife Jones established an endowment, part of which is the lecture series. Twice each year, the lecture series brings a scholar researcher of note to the University of Utah campus to give a presentation to faculty, staff, students, and the public. The Jones Lecture series is intended to develop and enhance educational instruction, research, and scholarship.
Velma Rife (Jones) was born in 1902 in Wyoming. She moved to Salt Lake City while in high school and would go on to graduate from the University of Utah in 1926. After graduation, she moved to California, where she taught at Berkeley. While at Berkeley that she met her husband, J. George Jones, Jr. Velma had an incredibly successful career in banking, ranching, and mining. She and her husband moved to Salt Lake City after living in California for a number of years. Mr. Jones died in 1985, and Velma in 1986. It was her wish to "do something good for the kids," and the J. George Jones, Jr. and Velma Rife Jones Memorial Fund is a fulfillment of her request.
2023 Distinguished Visiting Lecturer
We will be bringing another distinguished visiting lecturer to the campus for Fall. Check back for updates on the next J. George Jones, Jr. and Velma Rife Jones Lecture series.
Past Distinguished Lecturers
2023: Dr. Brian A. Burt. (Re)Engineering Graduate Advising: A Discussion about Care. March 13, 2023.
2022: *The J. George Jones, Jr. and Velma Rife Jones Lecture Series was suspended due to the global pandemic, Covid-19.
2021: *The J. George Jones, Jr. and Velma Rife Jones Lecture Series was suspended due to the global pandemic, Covid-19.
2020: Dr. Michelle M. Jacob, University of Oregon, Indigenous Education is for Everyone. January 23, 2020.
2019: Dr. Joel R. Levin, University of Arizona and University of Wisconsin. Contemporary Single-Case Intervention Research: Designs, Data Analyses, and Professional Issues. March 7-8, 2019.
2019: Benjamin Crump, Benjamin Crump Law. Using the Law as a Weapon. March 26, 2019.
2019: Joan Trumpauer Mulholland and Loki Mulholland. The Uncomfortable Truth. February 13, 2019.
2019: Dr. Cynthia Cruz, University of California, Santa Cruz. Thinking with Queer and Trans* Youth about Resistant Socialities and the Infrapolitics of the Street. February 21, 2019.
2018: Dr. Shelley Goldman, Stanford University. Design Thinking: Stories of Utah K-12 Experiences, Transformed. November 12, 2018.
2018: Dr. Julie Lounds Taylor, Vanderbilt University. Transition to Adulthood for Youth on the Autism Spectrum. March 29, 2018.
2017: Dr. Michael Dantley, Miami University. Leading Education in a Time of Transition: A Critical and Spiritual Imperative. April 6, 2017.
2017: Dr. Kevin Kumashiro, University of San Francisco. Bad Teacher!: How Blaming Teachers Distorts the Bigger Picture. February 24, 2016.
2015: Dr. Sonia Nieto, University of Massachusetts, Amherst. March 9, 2015.
2009: Dr. Gary R. Howard, REACH Center for Multicultural Education. A Passion for Justice: Engagin the Heart of Democracy. March 10, 2009.
2006: Dr. Bernice Lerner, Boston University, School of Medicine. August 2, 2006.
2005: Dr. Larry Cuban, Stanford University. Focus on School and University Partnerships. February 14, 2005.
2001: Dr. Barbara E. Ainsworth, University of South Carolina Prevention Center, School of Public Health. From the Lab Bench to the Park Bench -- The Value of Interdisciplinary Research for Physical Activity and Health. February 22, 2001.