PRESS RELEASE: 08.18.11 Wesleyan University President Michael Roth Joins Hastings Center Board

(Garrison, NY) Historian and author Michael S. Roth has been elected  to the Board of Directors of The Hastings Center.Roth, who has served as president of Wesleyan University since 2007, received his Ph.D. in history from Princeton University in 1984. The founding director of the Scripps College Humanities Institute, he also served as associate director of the Getty Research Institute in Los Angeles. Under Roth’s leadership as president, the California College of the Arts became known as one of the most progressive art schools in the country and one of the leading schools of design in the world.

David Roscoe, chairman of The Hastings Center Board of Directors, said of Roth, “He is a persuasive advocate for the liberal arts and the humanities, and his presence on the board strengthens our commitment to bring critical insight to the many bioethical issues created by advances in science, medicine, and technology.”

Roth curated “Sigmund Freud: Conflict and Culture,” an exhibition which opened at the Library of Congress in 1998.  He describes his scholarly interests as centered on “how people make sense of the past.” His fifth book,Memory, Trauma and History: Essays on Living with the Pastwill be published this year by Columbia University Press, and heis currently preparing his next book,Why Liberal Education Matters, for Yale University Press. Roth also publishes essays, book reviews, and commentaries in national newspapers, scholarly journals, and theHuffington Post.

“Michael Roth’s extraordinary accomplishments as an historian and as president of two distinguished institutions make him a wonderful addition to the Center’s board,” said Thomas H. Murray, president of the Hastings Center and one of its research scholars.

At Wesleyan, Roth has overseen the launch of the Usdan University Center, the Allbritton Center for the Study of Public Life, the Shapiro Creative Writing Center, and the multidisciplinary College of the Environment.

“I am honored to be joining such a distinguished group of directors, and eager to begin working with them on the strategic vision for the Hastings Center. Now more than ever, consideration of the fundamental ethical issues in health, medicine and the environment can serve the general public,” Roth said.

The world’s first bioethics research institute, The Hastings Center was established in 1969 to examine issues in medicine and the life sciences and their impact on individuals and society. The Hastings Center uses a unique interdisciplinary process to analyze complex issues in bioethics from several different perspectives— legal, medical, biological, philosophical, economic, and personal—in order to seek common ground. Many aspects of medical practice—from the safety of research to reproductive choices to genetics to the care of the dying— have been shaped by Hastings Center research. Its two peer-reviewed journals, the Hastings Center Report and IRB: Ethics & Human Research, publish the leading thinking in the field.

Contact: Michael Turton, Communications Associate
845 424 4040 ext. 242