The Kansas Humanities Council (KHC) welcomed National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) Chairman William D. Adams to the Eisenhower Presidential Library, Museum and Boyhood Home in Abilene on October 23, 2014, for one of his first official visits to a state humanities council as NEH chair. Chairman Adams participated in a full schedule of events including KHC’s “Heart of the Matter” event and meetings with humanities leaders and KHC board and staff. KHC is an affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities.
Confirmed by the United States Senate in July 2014, William D. “Bro” Adams is the 10th chairman of the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH). A committed advocate for the liberal arts, Chairman Adams most recently served as president of Colby College in Waterville, ME, from 2000 until his retirement on June 30, 2014. Chairman Adams brings to the Endowment a long record of leadership in higher education and the humanities. Learn more about Chairman Adams in this recent article in NEH’s Humanities magazine and in an interview on the Diane Rehm Show.
In a speech at the National Humanities Conference in Philadelphia, Pa., on October 31, 2014, Chairman Adams reflected warmly on his “eye opening” visit to Kansas, stating, “Last week I spent two days in Abilene, Kansas, with Julie Mulvihill and the Kansas Humanities Council staff and board. I got a very good sense of what that energetic council is doing, which is very impressive. I also spent time with representatives from academic institutions around the state, many of them recent NEH recipients.” Adams noted that the visit enhanced his understanding of the state’s historical and cultural treasures, adding, “I would like to go back.”
“It was a pleasure to host Chairman Adams in Abilene,” said Julie Mulvihill, executive director of the Kansas Humanities Council. “During the evening event, he encouraged us to think about how we can better apply the humanities to the current conditions of our nation. It’s a provocative thought and one that emphasizes the essential nature of KHC’s work in strengthening civic life.”
Chairman Adams’ full address to the National Humanities Conference, including his remarks about Kansas, is available here.