2019 Inamori Ethics Prize ceremony and academic symposium with LeVar Burton

Editor’s note: Tickets for both events have sold out. A standby line will be available for the prize ceremony and lecture Sept. 19 at the Maltz Performing Arts Center. Additional viewing for the Friday, Sept. 20, academic symposium, will be available in Thwing Center ballroom.

Photo of LeVar Burton
LeVar Burton Photo credit: 1ShotbyJules

The Inamori International Center for Ethics and Excellence at Case Western Reserve University has selected LeVar Burton, a renowned actor and advocate for children’s literacy and AIDS research, as the recipient of the 2019 Inamori Ethics Prize. Case Western Reserve has awarded the Inamori Ethics Prize annually since 2008 to individuals who have made significant and lasting contributions as global ethical leaders.

The Inamori International Center for Ethics and Excellence at Case Western Reserve University has selected LeVar Burton, a renowned actor and advocate for children’s literacy and AIDS research, as the recipient of the 2019 Inamori Ethics Prize. Case Western Reserve has awarded the Inamori Ethics Prize annually since 2008 to individuals who have made significant and lasting contributions as global ethical leaders.

Burton will receive the prize during a ceremony and academic symposium held at Case Western Reserve University Sept. 19–20. He will deliver a public lecture and participate in a panel discussion. Both events are free and open to the public, but have sold out.

Ceremony

The prize ceremony, featuring a lecture by Burton, will take place Thursday, Sept. 19, at 6 p.m. at the Maltz Performing Arts Center at The Temple-Tifereth Israel.

Guests without tickets for Thursday’s prize ceremony and lecture may join a standby line at the Maltz Performing Arts Center. Standby guests will be admitted based on available seats. Standby admission is not guaranteed.

Academic symposium

The academic symposium, titled “Ethical Leadership in the Arts: The Power of Storytelling and Representation,” will be held Friday, Sept. 20, at 12:45 p.m. at the Tinkham Veale University Center. Academic symposium tickets for seating in the Tinkham Veale University Center are sold out. Those with tickets for the Friday academic symposium should report to the Tinkham Veale University Center. For those without tickets, additional viewing will be available in Thwing Excelsior Ballroom.

The symposium will feature Burton and distinguished panelists:

  • Cara Byrne, lecturer in English/SAGES teaching fellow and research advisor on diverse children’s literature for the Schubert Center for Child Studies; and
  • Joy Bostic, interim vice president for inclusion, diversity and equal opportunity, and associate professor in the Department of Religious Studies.

Shannon E. French, director of the Inamori International Center for Ethics and Excellence and the Inamori Professor in Ethics, will moderate the discussion.

About Burton

Burton is the first Inamori Ethics Prize recipient to be honored for ethical leadership in the arts. His work for children’s literacy through the long-running PBS children’s series Reading Rainbow and his nonprofit RRKIDZ has had a profound impact around the world, as has his support for more funding for AIDS research.

As an actor, he is best known for his powerful performance as Kunta Kinte in the mini-series Roots (based on the book by Alex Haley on slavery in America) and his role as engineer Geordi La Forge on the TV series Star Trek: The Next Generation and related films, which portray a positive and just future for humanity.