Sinai Forum 2023
A thought-provoking blend of presentations and speakers, the 70th Sinai Forum season continues our tradition of exploring the most important issues of the day.
In celebration of 70 years of Sinai Forum, access to select archived programs will be included with every ticket purchase.
Jennifer Griffin & Benjamin Hall
Protecting Journalists and Journalism in Today’s World
SUNDAY, OCTOBER 1, 2023 – 4 p.m. (CT)
DSAC, WESTVILLE CAMPUS
Jennifer Griffin is an accomplished journalist and a prominent figure in the world of broadcast news. As a national security correspondent for Fox News, she brings extensive expertise and deep insights into international and military affairs.
Benjamin Hall is a seasoned journalist who has covered numerous high-profile stories, providing in-depth analysis and firsthand accounts from war zones and areas of political unrest. In March 2022, he sustained serious injuries while on the front lines in Ukraine.
Griffin and Hall share a connection through the dangers they have faced in their careers. After Hall was injured, Griffin worked collaboratively to coordinate and facilitate Hall’s evacuation from a war zone. Their firsthand experiences and unwavering determination exemplify the sacrifices made by journalists around the world and highlight their shared commitment in bringing truth to light through journalism and the pursuit of objective reporting.
Jennifer Griffin currently serves as a national security correspondent for FOX News Channel (FNC). She joined FNC in October 1999 as a Jerusalem-based correspondent. Prior to that she reported for 3 years from Moscow for FNC.
Since 2007, Griffin has reported daily from the Pentagon where she questions senior military leaders, travels to war zones with the Joint Chiefs and Secretaries of Defense, and reports on all aspects of the military and the current wars against ISIS and Al Qaeda.
She extensively covered the Russian invasion of Ukraine, reporting live from Lviv and Kyiv, Ukraine, where she presented an exclusive sit down interview with Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba. In April of 2022, she secured an exclusive interview with United States Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin, which took place at Ramstein Air Base in Germany following his meeting with dozens of defense ministers on the war in Ukraine. Prior to traveling to Europe, Griffin spearheaded FNC’s Ukrainian war coverage stateside with around the clock updates from the Pentagon. In 2021, she led reporting surrounding the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Afghanistan and the terror attack at Abbey Gate, including securing an interview with chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Mark Milley.
Additionally, Griffin covered the attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya, on September 11, 2012, and the killing of Osama bin Laden in 2011. She has secured major interviews with former Defense Secretary Leon Panetta in Baghdad on the day the Iraq War ended in December 2011, an exclusive interview with General David Petraeus in Kabul, Afghanistan, in 2010 when he took over as the top US commander there. Griffin also traveled with former Defense Secretary Robert Gates on multiple trips overseas from 2007 – 2011. She began her work at the Pentagon at the start of the “surge.”
During Griffin’s tenure at FNC, she has provided coverage from Israel. She provided on scene coverage of the Palestinian Intifada from 2000 – 2007 and was among the first reporters to arrive in the wake of the South-East Asia tsunami tragedy, reporting from Phuket and Khao Lak, Thailand. While based in Jerusalem, she reported on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, countless suicide bombings, military incursions, and failed peace deals. In 2000, she provided on-site coverage of Israel’s withdrawal from Lebanon, its withdrawal from the Gaza strip in 2005 and Yasser Arafat’s funeral. Also, Griffin is credited with conducting a rare and extensive interview with former Prime Minister of Israel Ariel Sharon on his farm in 2009 before he lapsed into a coma.
Prior to joining FNC, Griffin covered the Middle East region for several American media organizations including National Public Radio and U.S. News & World Report. Previously, she reported for The Sowetan newspaper in Johannesburg, South Africa, where she covered Nelson Mandela’s prison release and numerous other historic moments in South Africa’s transition away from the apartheid regime.
A graduate of Harvard University in 1992, Griffin received a B.A. in comparative politics. She is also the co-author of the book, “This Burning Land: Lessons from the Frontlines of the Transformed Israeli- Palestinian Conflict,” which she wrote with her husband, Greg Myre, regarding their experience in Israel.
Benjamin Hall is veteran war reporter and Fox News Correspondent based in London.
Hall is the author of “Saved: A War Reporter’s Mission to Make It Home.” This evocative, harrowing, and deeply moving work is a powerful memoir of family and friends, of life and healing, and of how to respond when you are tested in unimaginable ways. Perhaps more importantly, it is also a tribute to the many heroes who risked their lives to save his. Saved was published March 14, 2023, a year after the fateful day.
As a journalist for Fox News, Hall had worked in dangerous war zones like Syria and Afghanistan, but with three young daughters at home, life on the edge was supposed to be a thing of the past. Yet, when Russia viciously attacked Ukraine in February 2022, Hall was quickly dispatched; despite the risks, he knew that Americans needed to understand this world-altering conflict.
On March 14, 2022, while on assignment covering the war in Ukraine, Hall and his crew were hit by a multi-sequential Russian drone strike. Fox News cameraman Pierre Zakrzewski and Ukrainian journalist Oleksandra “Sasha” Kuvshinova, who were working alongside him, were killed. With Hall himself gravely injured and stuck in Kyiv, it was unclear if he would make it out alive.
Saved is the story of how he survived – a story that continues to this day. For the first time, Hall shares his experience in full, from his ground-level view of the war in Ukraine to the heroic actions that led to his dramatic rescue and through his arduous, and ongoing, recovery.
He shares stories about his time at the front lines of the world’s most dangerous conflicts and reveals how he struggled to step away from war reporting, going inside the events that have permanently transformed him. Hall recalls his time at the front lines of our world’s conflicts, exploring how his struggle to step back from war reporting led him into the fray one perilous last time, and explaining how his years of experience kept him safe, leading him to cover one more story that ultimately turned into a mission of perseverance.
Through it all, Hall’s spirit has remained undaunted, buoyed by that remarkable corps of people from around the world – whose collective determination ensured his survival – the former and current military personnel who rescued him, the medical staff who saved him, his coworkers who fought for his safe return, and his family who supported him at every turn. Ultimately, this trauma, the greatest of his life, serves as a pivotal reminder to us all of the fundamental goodness in the world, illuminating how the horrors of war can bring about the best in humanity, and how everything can change in an instant.
Hall, a graduate of Duke University, Richmond American University in London, and University of the Arts London, is a citizen of both the United States and the United Kingdom. He lives in London with his wife and three daughters.
Bruce D. Perry, M.D., PH.D.
What Happened to You? A Conversation on Trauma, Resilience and Healing
SUNDAY, OCTOBER 15, 2023 – 4 p.m. (CT)
DSAC, WESTVILLE CAMPUS
Dr. Bruce D. Perry is the Principal of the Neurosequential Network, a Professor (Adjunct) in the Departments of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at the Feinberg School of Medicine at Northwestern University in Chicago and the School of Allied Health, College of Science, Health and Engineering, La Trobe University, Melbourne, Victoria Australia.
Over the last thirty years, Dr. Perry has been an active teacher, clinician and researcher in children’s mental health and the neurosciences holding a variety of academic positions. His work on the impact of abuse, neglect and trauma on the developing brain has impacted clinical practice, programs, and policy across the world. Dr. Perry is the author of several books. His most recent book, “What Happened to You? Conversations on Trauma, Resilience, and Healing,” co-authored with Oprah Winfrey, was released in 2021.
Dr. Perry is the Principal of the Neurosequential Network a Professor (Adjunct) in the Departments of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at the Feinberg School of Medicine at Northwestern University in Chicago and the School of Allied Health, College of Science, Health and Engineering, La Trobe University, Melbourne, Victoria Australia.
Over the last thirty years, Dr. Perry has been an active teacher, clinician and researcher in children’s mental health and the neurosciences holding a variety of academic positions. His work on the impact of abuse, neglect and trauma on the developing brain has impacted clinical practice, programs and policy across the world. Dr. Perry is the author, with Maia Szalavitz, of “The Boy Who Was Raised As A Dog,” a bestselling book based on his work with maltreated children and “Born For Love: Why Empathy is Essential and Endangered.” Dr. Perry’s most recent book, “What Happened to You? Conversations on Trauma, Resilience, and Healing,” co-authored with Oprah Winfrey was released in 2021.
Dr. Perry was on the faculty of the Departments of Pharmacology and Psychiatry at the University of Chicago School of Medicine from 1988 to 1991. From 1992 to 2001, Dr. Perry served as the Trammell Research Professor of Child Psychiatry at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas. During this time, Dr. Perry also was Chief of Psychiatry for Texas Children’s Hospital and Vice-Chairman for Research within the Department of Psychiatry. From 2001 to 2003, Dr. Perry served as the Medical Director for Provincial Programs in Children’s Mental Health for the Alberta Mental Health Board. He continues to consult with the government of Alberta on children’s issues and serves as a founding member of the Premier’s Council of Alberta’s Promise.
Dr. Perry has conducted both basic neuroscience and clinical research. His neuroscience research has examined the effects of prenatal drug exposure on brain development, the neurobiology of human neuropsychiatric disorders, the neurophysiology of traumatic life events and basic mechanisms related to the development of neurotransmitter receptors in the brain. His clinical research and practice has focused on high-risk children. This work has examined the cognitive, behavioral, emotional, social, and physiological effects of neglect and trauma in children, adolescents and adults. This work has been instrumental in describing how childhood experiences, including neglect and traumatic stress, change the biology of the brain – and, thereby, the health of the child.
His clinical research over the last twenty years has been focused on integrating emerging principles of developmental neuroscience into clinical practice. This work has resulted in the development of innovative clinical practices and programs working with maltreated and traumatized children, most prominently the Neurosequential Model©, a developmentally sensitive, neurobiology-informed approach to clinical work (NMT), education (NME) and caregiving (NMC). This approach to clinical problem solving has been integrated into the programs at dozens of large public and non-profit organizations serving at-risk children and their families.
His experience as a clinician and a researcher with traumatized children has led many community and governmental agencies to consult Dr. Perry following high-profile incidents involving traumatized children and youth including the Branch Davidian siege in Waco (1993), the Oklahoma City bombing (1995), the Columbine school shootings (1999), the September 11th terrorist attacks (2001), Hurricane Katrina (2005), the FLDS polygamist sect (2008), the earthquake in Haiti (2010), the tsunami in Tohoku Japan (2011), the Sandy Hook Elementary school shootings (2012), and the Camp wildfire in California (2018) among many others.
Dr. Perry has published over 500 journal articles, book chapters and scientific proceedings and is the recipient of numerous professional awards and honors, including the T. Berry Brazelton Infant Mental Health Advocacy Award, the Award for Leadership in Public Child Welfare, the Alberta Centennial Medal and the 2014 Kohl Education Prize. He serves on the Board of Directors of multiple organizations including Prevent Child Abuse America and the Ana Grace Project.
He has presented about child maltreatment, children’s mental health, neurodevelopment and youth violence in a variety of venues including policy-making bodies such as the White House Summit on Violence, the California Assembly and U.S. House Committee on Education. Dr. Perry has been featured in a wide range of media including 60 Minutes, National Public Radio, The Today Show,
Good Morning America, Nightline, CNN, MSNBC, NBC, ABC and CBS News and the Oprah Winfrey Show. His work has been featured in documentaries produced by Dateline NBC, 20/20, the BBC, Nightline, CBC, PBS, as well as dozen international documentaries. Many print media have highlighted the clinical and research activities of Dr. Perry including a Pulitzer-prize winning series in the Chicago Tribune, The Sun Magazine, US News and World Report, Time, Newsweek, Forbes ASAP, Washington Post, the New York Times and Rolling Stone.
Dr. Perry, a native of Bismarck, North Dakota, was an undergraduate at Stanford University and Amherst College. He attended medical and graduate school at Northwestern University, receiving both M.D. and Ph.D. degrees. Dr. Perry completed a residency in general psychiatry at Yale University School of Medicine and a fellowship in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at The University
The End of the World…And Other Opportunities
SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 5, 2023 – 4 p.m. (CT)
DSAC, WESTVILLE CAMPUS
Peter Zeihan is a renowned geopolitical strategist and author known for his astute analysis of global affairs. With expertise in demography, energy, and security, Zeihan offers unique insights into the future of nations and the global landscape.
Through his captivating speaking engagements and best-selling books like “The Accidental Superpower” and “ The End of the World is Just the Beginning: Mapping the Collapse of Globalization,” he presents a compelling narrative on the impact of geography and shifting geopolitical dynamics. Zeihan’s concise and thought-provoking assessments have earned him recognition as a trusted voice in the field, enabling individuals and organizations to navigate an ever-changing world with clarity and foresight.
Peter Zeihan is a geopolitical strategist, which is a fancy way of saying he helps people understand how the world works. Peter combines an expert understanding of demography, economics, energy, politics, technology, and security to help clients best prepare for an uncertain future.
Over the course of his career, Peter has worked for the US State Department in Australia, the DC think tank community, and helped develop the analytical models for Stratfor, one of the world’s premier private intelligence companies. Peter founded his own firm — Zeihan on Geopolitics — in 2012 in order to provide a select group of clients with direct, custom analytical products. Today those clients represent a vast array of sectors including energy majors, financial institutions, business associations, agricultural interests, universities and the U.S. military.
With a keen eye toward what will drive tomorrow’s headlines, his irreverent approach transforms topics that are normally dense and heavy into accessible, relevant takeaways for audiences of all types.
Peter is a critically-acclaimed author whose first two books—”The Accidental Superpower” and “The Absent Superpower”—have been recommended by Mitt Romney, Fareed Zakaria and Ian Bremmer. His latest third title, “Disunited Nations: The Scramble for Power in an Ungoverned World” became available in March 2020.
Peter’s fourth book, “The End of the World is Just the Beginning: Mapping the Collapse of Globalization,” became available in June 2022.
Anthony Ray Hinton
The Sun Does Shine: How I Found Life and Freedom on Death Row
SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 19, 2023 – 4 p.m. (CT)
DSAC, WESTVILLE CAMPUS
Anthony Ray Hinton survived for 30 years on Alabama’s death row. His story is a decades-long journey to exoneration and freedom. In 1985, Mr. Hinton was convicted of the unsolved murders of two fast-food restaurant managers based on the testimony of ballistics experts for the State who claimed that the crime bullets came from a dusty revolver found in Mr. Hinton’s mother’s closet. Without the benefit of a competent expert to challenge the State’s theory, an all-white jury convicted Mr. Hinton and he was sentenced to death.
After years of petitioning to have the revolver re-analyzed, and with the assistance of the Equal Justice Initiative, led by attorney Bryan Stevenson, Mr. Hinton was freed in 2015. Since his release, Mr. Hinton has traveled the world sharing his story and discussing the changes that need to be made to prevent similar injustices from happening to other people.
Anthony Ray Hinton survived for 30 years on Alabama’s death row. His story is a decades-long journey to exoneration and freedom.
In 1985, Mr. Hinton was convicted of the unsolved murders of two fast-food restaurant managers based on the testimony of ballistics experts for the State who claimed that the crime bullets came from a dusty revolver found in Mr. Hinton’s mother’s closet. Without the benefit of a competent expert to challenge the State’s theory (Mr. Hinton’s lawyer hired a ballistics expert who was blind in one eye), an all-white jury convicted Mr. Hinton and he was sentenced to death.
After years of petitioning to have the revolver re-analyzed, three independent experts concluded that the bullets could not have been fired from his mother’s revolver. With the assistance of the Equal Justice Initiative, led by attorney Bryan Stevenson, Mr. Hinton was freed in 2015.
Since his release, Mr. Hinton has traveled the world sharing his story and discussing the changes that need to be made to prevent similar injustices from happening to other people. In 2018, Mr. Hinton published “The Sun Does Shine: How I Found Life and Freedom on Death Row,” which was selected for Oprah’s Book Club and is a New York Times bestseller. In 2019, he was awarded an honorary doctorate from St. Bonaventure University.
Talking Baseball with Chicago Cubs Manager David Ross
SUNDAY, DECEMBER 3, 2023 – 4 p.m. (CT)
DSAC, WESTVILLE CAMPUS
David Ross is an integral part of Chicago Cubs baseball lore. Ross had an illustrious career as a catcher that spanned 15 seasons in the Major Leagues. His journey culminated with the Cubs, where he played from 2015 to 2016 and helped lead the team to their historic World Series victory in 2016. Ross’s leadership, veteran presence, and exceptional defensive skills endeared him to both teammates and fans.
After retiring as a player, Ross transitioned into coaching and currently serves as the manager of the Cubs, bringing his invaluable experience to guide the team’s success. Join David Ross and moderator, Dan Plesac, an 18-year MLB Veteran and MLB Network Analyst, for an afternoon talking baseball.
David Ross spent 15 years as a Major League Baseball catcher and won World Series Championships with both the Boston Red Sox in 2013 and the Chicago Cubs in 2016. During the span of his career, he played for the Los Angeles Dodgers, Pittsburgh Pirates, San Diego Padres, Cincinnati Reds, Boston Red Sox, Atlanta Braves, and Chicago Cubs. After retiring from the game, David served as a Special Assistant with the Chicago Cubs and a baseball analyst for ESPN. He was hired as the Manager of the Cubs after the 2019 season and is still serving in that role.
Ross is also a New York Times bestselling author with his memoir, “Teammate: My Journey in Baseball and a World Series for the Ages”. In the Spring of 2017, he placed 2nd in Season 24 of Dancing with the Stars.
During the offseason, David lives with his family near Tallahassee, Florida.
Never Park the Car: Making Change When Change Says No
SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 17, 2023 – 4 p.m. (CT)
DSAC, WESTVILLE CAMPUS
Mitchell E. Daniels, Jr. served as a two-term governor of the state of Indiana and as the 12th president of Purdue University. His political background brought a unique perspective to the realm of academia. During his tenure, Daniels prioritized affordability, innovation, and student success.
Daniels championed online education and technological advancements, expanding Purdue’s global reach and accessibility. Known for his pragmatic leadership style and commitment to fiscal responsibility, he left a lasting impact on the university, fostering a culture of excellence and entrepreneurship.
Mitchell E. Daniels, Jr. served as a two-term governor of the state of Indiana from 2004 to 2012 and as the 12th president of Purdue University from 2013 to 2022.
He was elected governor in his first bid for any elected office, and then re-elected with more votes than any candidate in the state’s history. During his tenure, Indiana went from an $800 million deficit to its first AAA credit rating, led the nation in infrastructure building and passed sweeping education and healthcare reforms.
After a series of transformations, which included the biggest tax cut in state history, the nation’s most sweeping deregulation of the telecommunications industry and a host of other reforms aimed at strengthening the state’s economy, Indiana was rated a top five state for business climate and number one for state infrastructure and effectiveness of state government as Daniels exited office. Indiana’s business climate is now rated among the nation’s best.
At Purdue, Daniels prioritized student affordability and reinvestment in the university’s strengths. He ended 36 years of consecutive tuition hikes by freezing tuition and mandatory fees at 2012 levels for all students. The hold on rates will continue at least until the 2024-25 academic year. While under his leadership, the university also went from the second most expensive school in the Big Ten for room and board costs to the most affordable by freezing room rates and reducing meal costs by 10%. Overall, aggregate student borrowing fell 37% under his tenure and it cost less to attend Purdue at the conclusion of his time as president than at the start, even without adjusting for inflation.
In recognition of his leadership as both a governor and a university president, Daniels was named among the Top 50 Greatest World Leaders by Fortune Magazine in 2015 and was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2019.
Prior to becoming governor, Daniels served as chief of staff to Senator Richard Lugar, senior advisor to President Ronald Reagan and Director of the Office of Management and Budget under President George W. Bush. He also was the CEO of the Hudson Institute, a major contract research organization. During an 11-year career at Eli Lilly and Company, he held a number of top executive posts including president of Eli Lilly’s North American pharmaceutical operations.
Daniels earned a bachelor’s degree from Princeton’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs and a law degree from Georgetown. He is the author of three books and a contributing columnist in the Washington Post.
He and his wife Cheri have four daughters and seven grandchildren.