Laura Bush speaks at Guilford College Bryan Series

Laura Bush speaks at a Guilford College Bryan Series at the Greensboro Coliseum in Greensboro, N.C., on Tuesday, Sept. 10, 2019.

We're a month into the fall semester, more or less, and the list of speakers, films, readings and the like grows longer with every passing week. 

Here's the mid-month speakers update. I've added a few events that popped up since I published the last roundup at the start of September. And pay attention to what's coming up in October — a second Bryan Series lecture, a Chancellor’s Speaker Series event at N.C. A&T and an Elon University School of Law Distinguished Leadership Lecture Series talk.

Everything's free unless noted, but note that several of these free events do indeed require you to reserve tickets. OK, here goes:

Sept. 17: Former New Orleans mayor Mitch Landrieu will speak at Wake Forest University (6 p.m., Brendle Recital Hall). Landrieu was Louisiana's lieutenant governor from 2004 to 2010 after serving 16 years in the state legislature. In his 2018 book "In the Shadow of Statues: A White Southerner Confronts History," he writes about, among other things, his decision to remove four Confederate statues from New Orleans in 2017.

Sept. 17: N.C. Supreme Court Justice Paul Newby will speak at a Constitution Day event at the main campus of Alamance Community College in Graham (2:30 p.m., Patterson Auditorium. Newby is a former assistant U.S. attorney who has served on the state Supreme Court since 2004.

Sept. 18: Author and journalist Alex Wagner will give the Common Reading Lecture at Elon University (7:30 p.m., Alumni Gym; call (336) 278-5610 for tickets, which are $15). In "Futureface," she writes of her travels around the world to untangle the mystery of her family's racial and ethnic history. Wagner is co-host of "The Circus," a political documentary series that airs on Showtime, and a correspondent for CBS News.

Sept. 20: UNC School of the Arts will screen student films from the 2018-19 academic year (Main Theatre of the ACE Exhibition Complex). The 90-minute show will feature eight student films.

Sept. 23: U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg will speak in Raleigh (7:30 p.m.) as a guest of Meredith College. The event is a sellout, but there are two ways to watch: in person via livestream at Jones Auditorium on the Meredith campus (doors open at 7 p.m.), or online at this link.

Sept. 26: Visual and performing artist Nick Cave will be at UNCG (6 p.m., Elliott University Center auditorium). Cave is best known for his elaborate Soundsuits, wearable pieces that blend fashion, sculpture and sound.

Sept. 27: Former South Carolina governor Nikki Haley will speak at Elon University's fall convocation (3:30 p.m., Schar Center). Haley served as the U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations from 2017 to 2019. Her book, "With All Due Respect," comes out in November. Click here for tickets ($15 general admission; free for those with Elon ID).

Sept. 27: Brittany Hawley, Ms. Wheelchair USA, will talk about academic accessibility at Greensboro College (3 p.m., Sternberger Center in the library). Hawley, a North Carolina native, is touring the country with her service dog to promote Universal Design for Learning, a program that Greensboro College is using to adapt curricula and learning environments to the individual needs of students.

Sept. 27: Planetary scientist Cathy Olkin will give the annual Jo Cline Astronomy Lecture at GTCC (7:30 p.m., Joseph S. Koury Auditorium on the Jamestown campus). Olkin works at the Southwest Research Institute in Colorado, where she focuses her research on planetary atmospheres and surfaces in the outer solar system. After the lecture, the Cline Observatory will be open for viewing, weather permitting.

Sept. 28: Novelist Jacob Paul will read at Scuppernong Books in Greensboro (7 p.m., 304 S. Elm St.). His third book, "The Last Tower to Heaven," was published this month. Paul teaches creative writing at High Point University.

Sept. 28: High Point University will hold its annual HPUniverse Day for children and families (6 to 9 p.m., Wanek School of Natural Sciences). HPU says there will be more than 20 different learning stations and activities. The new building's planetarium also will be open.

Here are a few events coming up in October:

Oct. 2: U.S. Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer will be the guest of the Guilford College Bryan Series (7:30 p.m., Greensboro Coliseum). Breyer has served on the court since 1994, when he was appointed by President Bill Clinton. Click here for tickets ($60).

Oct. 3: Amber Riley, Laverne Cox and Shaun Ross — advocates for equality and healthy living — will kick off a new season of the Chancellor’s Speaker Series at N.C. A&T (6 p.m., Harrison Auditorium). Riley starred in "Glee" and won a season of "Dancing with the Stars." Cox stars in “Orange is The New Black" and is the first openly transgender actress to be nominated for a Primetime Emmy for acting. Ross is model, singer, actor and dancer and is first male model to represent albinism. The event is titled “Love the Skin You’re In." It'll be moderated by Raushannah “Dr. RJ” Johnson-Verwayne, a 2001 A&T alum and licensed clinical psychologist in Atlanta. For public tickets, visit the University Ticket Office in Brown Hall on campus.

Oct. 10: Elon University School of Law will bring former federal prosecutor Preet Bharara to Greensboro (6:30 p.m., Carolina Theatre). Bharara served as U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York from 2009 to 2017. His 2019 book "Doing Justice" was a New York Times bestseller. Tickets are $15 (or free with Elon ID) and available at

Want to get your event listed? If you have a lecture, panel discussion, film or something similar coming up, email me the details at You can also find me on Twitter at @JohnNewsomNR.

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