President’s Arts and Humanities Luncheon

The President’s Arts and Humanities Luncheon series has concluded.  With the university’s return to normal operations, we will launch the President’s Social Sciences Luncheon in fall 2020. The series will feature UF faculty speakers from political science, anthropology, sociology and more. Check back for updates in August.


Past Speakers

Victoria Pagán

February 14, 2020 Conspiracy Theories: How They Emerge and Why They Persist From Antiquity to the Present by Victoria Pagan.

Victoria Pagán is a professor of Classics and has written twin studies on conspiracy for the University of Texas Press: Conspiracy Narratives in Roman History and Conspiracy Theory in Latin Literature. She is also the author of Rome and the Literature of Gardens and co-editor of Disciples of Flora: Gardens in History and Culture. As an internationally recognized specialist on the Roman historian Tacitus, she has edited a Companion to Tacitus; she has written the volume Tacitus for the “Understanding Classics” series; and she is chief editor of the Tacitus Encyclopedia, an in-progress collaboration of 168 scholars from six continents.

Jose Valentino Ruiz

January 22, 2020: Beyond the Grammys, Beyond Yourself, It’s About People: Making a Meaningful Career as a Creative Professional presented by José Valentino Ruiz.

Dr. Ruiz's passions are expressed as a multi-instrumentalist, performing artist, record producer, composer, missionary, empirical researcher, CEO, author, and educator. His skills have paved the way for him to become a Grammy Award Winner, an Emmy Award Winner, a multi-Grammy Award Nominee, a Global Music Award Winner, a Parents' Choice Award Winner, and a 51-time Downbeat Music Award Winner. He is the Inaugural Director of the Music Business & Entrepreneurship Program at UF and holds a bachelor’s degree in music theory, a master’s in instrumental performance, a doctor of ministry in global outreach, and a Ph.D. in music education.

Author and Creative Writing Professor Jill Ciment

November 4, 2019: The Other Half: A Reconsideration of My Earlier Memoir, Half a Life presented by Jill Ciment.

Jill Ciment is a professor of English and teacher of graduate and undergraduate writing workshops. She is the author of Small Claims, a collection of short stories and novellas; The Law of Falling Bodies, Teeth of the Dog, The Tattoo Artist,Heroic Measures (a finalist for the Los Angeles Book Prize), Act of God,  and The Body in Question, novels; and Half a Life, a memoir. She has been awarded a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship, a NEA Japan Fellowship Prize, two New York State Fellowships for the Arts, the Janet Heidinger Kafka Prize, and a Guggenheim Fellowship.

Veteran Broadway dancer and School of Theatre and Dance Professor Andrew Cao

October 9, 2019: Pippin: UF’s 2019 Mainstage Musical presented by Andrew Cao.

Andrew Cao is a veteran Broadway dancer and lecturer in the UF School of Theatre + Dance. He danced on Broadway in Disney’s Aladdin, the 2011 revival of Anything Goes with Sutton Foster, and Nice Work if You Can Get It, spanning almost 10 years and thousands of performances. In addition, Andrew appeared on television in Iron Fist, The Mysteries of Laura, Blue Bloods, The Detour, The Late Show with David Letterman, The Tony Awards, The View, Good Morning America, and Nickelodeon’s The Backyardigans.

Pulitzer Prize Winner Professor Jack E. Davis

September 11, 2019: Coming Ashore: Wonder, Creativity, and Beholding the Blue-Green Earth presented by Jack Davis.

Professor Davis is a professor of history and the Rothman Family Chair in the Humanities at the University of a. His The Gulf: The Making of an American Sea won the 2018 Pulitzer Prize in history, and in 2019 he was awarded an Andrew Carnegie Fellowship to support his current book project, Bird of Paradox: How the Bald Eagle Saved the Soul of America