James Comey, Lou Holtz among this season’s Sinai speakers

Information from PNW

Former FBI Director James Comey opens the Purdue University Northwest (PNW) Sinai Forum’s 65th season Sunday, Sept. 9. Four other speakers will fill out this season’s schedule, including a legendary college football coach, a national non-profit leader, an internationally known photographer and a national political reporter.

“This year’s series will be exciting, compelling and engaging,” said Sinai Forum Executive Director Leslie Plesac. “We are grateful for the generosity of our sponsors to help us bring a wonderfully diverse and dynamic lineup of speakers to northwest Indiana.”

Hosting prominent speakers has been the cornerstone of the Sinai Forum’s renowned history. Plesac said the Forum is designed to give audiences a unique opportunity to hear noted speakers and pose questions in a town-hall style format.

The season runs from September through December, leading off with Comey at Blue Chip Casino, Hotel & Spa in Michigan City. The remaining programs will be held in the James B. Dworkin Student Services and Activities Complex on the PNW Westville Campus. All programs will begin at 4 p.m., with doors opening at 3 p.m.

Sinai Forum season speakers


— James Comey, Sunday, Sept. 9, at 4 p.m., whose subject will be “The Ethical Leader.” Comey led the Federal Bureau of Investigation from 2013 to 2017, appointed to the post by President Barack Obama. He was removed from that post in 2017 by President Donald Trump. His tenure was tested by new forces within and outside America’s borders. In his talk, Comey will provide a rare respite from partisan politics. His story is one of great leadership, misguided leadership, patriotism and the vital importance of shaping a culture that puts the truth first.


Platon, Sunday, Oct. 7, at 4 p.m. Speaking on “Powerful Portraits: An Intimate Look at Humanity and Leadership,” Platon is an internationally known photographer whose portraits capture the personalities behind the public faces of the world’s most powerful decision makers. A communicator and storyteller, his work has been exhibited in galleries and museums both domestically and abroad. Platon has shot portraits for a range of international publications including Rolling Stone, The New York Times magazine, Vanity Fair, Esquire and GQ. He developed a special relationship with TIME magazine, producing more than 20 covers for them. In addition, he founded a non-profit foundation named The People’s Portfolio, which aspires to create a visual language that breaks barriers, expands dignity, fights discrimination, and enlists the public to support human rights around the world.


Reshma Saujani, Sunday, Oct. 28, at 4 p.m. Saujani’s talk will focus on “Women, Technology and Leadership.” She is the founder and CEO of Girls Who Code, a national non-profit organization working to close the gender gap in technology. Started in 2012, the organization has grown to reach 40,000 girls, running 80 summer immersion programs and 1,500 clubs across the U.S. Girls Who Code works to inspire, educate and equip young women with the computing skills to pursue 21st century opportunities.


Robert Costa, Sunday, Nov. 11, at 4 p.m. Speaking on “Inside 2018: Understanding the Midterm Elections,” Costa will lend his insights as a national political reporter for The Washington Post, where he covers the White House, Congress and campaigns. He is also moderator of PBS’ Washington Week, an award-winning news discussion program, and a political analyst for NBC News and MSNBC. Costa’s in-depth reporting on President Donald Trump, which has included dozens of interviews and feature stories, has been widely circulated.


Lou Holtz, Sunday, Dec. 2, at 4 p.m. During “An Afternoon with Legendary Coach Lou Holtz: Game Plan for Success,” the former Notre Dame coach will talk about overcoming seemingly impossible challenges by setting goals and working to achieve them. Holtz established himself as one of the most successful college football coaches of all time. Twenty-six seasons as a collegiate head coach earned him a sterling reputation for turning pretenders into contenders. He is known for taking football programs and elevating them to the top 20, but nowhere has he done this as impressively than at the University of Notre Dame, where he led the Fighting Irish to a national championship in 1988.

Purchasing tickets

Tickets are sold as a season series for all programs. A limited number of single-program tickets will be offered only for Comey. Regular-season series tickets with general seating for all five programs are $150 each. Patron season series tickets, including reserved seating and an exclusive reception with speakers before each program, are $275 each. Single-program tickets for Comey are $100 each. Admission for all programs is free for high school and college students with a valid student ID card. Tickets may be purchased by credit card online at www.pnw.edu/sinai-forum or by cash or check at the Bursars’ Office at the PNW Westville campus from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. The Bursars’ Office is located in Room 127 of the Robert F. Schwarz Hall on the Westville Campus.


This season’s sponsors are Urschel Laboratories, The Times Media Company, Blue Chip Casino Hotel & Spa, The Bankoff Family, John W. Anderson Foundation, Horizon Bank, The Herald-Argus, and The News Dispatch.

Additional information about the Sinai Forum is available at www.pnw.edu/sinai-forum.

2 Responses to “James Comey, Lou Holtz among this season’s Sinai speakers”

  1. Papadoc

    Jul 21. 2018

    Great idea with Lou. Comey should give his presentation from behind bars. Why doesn’t the forum invite Putin to speak next year

    Reply to this comment
  2. Eyes Open

    Jul 22. 2018

    Given the events of last week, it appears that Putin is already speaking to us via our President.

    Reply to this comment

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