Darren Walker, president of the Ford Foundation and one of TIME Magazine’s 100 Most Influential People in the World, will deliver The Oncor Lecture in SMU’s Willis M. Tate Distinguished Lecture Series Tuesday, Feb. 27, 2018. The lecture will begin at 8 p.m. in McFarlin Auditorium.
As president of the nation’s second largest philanthropic fund, Walker has been a leader in the nonprofit and philanthropic sectors. He led the philanthropy committee to bring a resolution to the city of Detroit’s historical bankruptcy.
Prior to joining Ford, Walker was vice president of the Rockefeller Foundation, where he managed the Rebuild New Orleans initiative after Hurricane Katrina. In the 1990s, as COO of Harlem’s largest community development organization, the Abyssinian Development Corporation, Walker oversaw a comprehensive revitalization program of central Harlem, including over 1,000 new units of housing. He also had a 10-year career in international law and finance at Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton and UBS.
In addition, Walker is a member of the Commission on the Future of Rikers Island and chair of the U.S. Impact Investing Alliance. He also serves on the boards of Carnegie Hall, New York City Ballet, High Line, Arcus Foundation and PepsiCo. In 2016, TIME magazine featured him on its annual list of the “100 Most Influential People in the World.” He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the recipient of 10 honorary degrees and university awards.
Walker was a member of the first Head Start class in 1965 and graduated from the University of Texas at Austin, which recognized him with its Distinguished Alumnus Award in 2009.
All SMU community members are invited to the free Tate Lecture Series Student Forum at 4:30 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 27, in the Hughes-Trigg Student Center Ballroom. Doors open at 4 p.m. Tweet questions for Darren Walker to #TateTalk.
The evening lecture is sold out. Students can go to the basement of McFarlin Auditorium at 7 p.m. with their SMU IDs for possible free seating at the evening lecture. Seats will be given on a first-come, first-served basis.
— Written by Kenny Ryan