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Pepperdine Hosts Innovative Conference on Character

Dean Starr An innovative conference titled
"Character Perspectives: The Role of
Character in our Society," will take
place on Monday, Jan. 21, Martin
Luther King, Jr. Day, from 9 a.m.
to 2 p.m., at Pepperdine University's
Drescher Graduate Campus in Malibu.

The conference seeks to bring together community organizations and individuals ranging from students to clergy, respected scholars, and community leaders. Presented by the Western Los Angeles County Council Boy Scouts of America (BSA) of Van Nuys, California, and in partnership with the American Humanics Scholars of Pepperdine University, the conference aims to inspire individuals who will help in the future to shape character through education, law, public policy, and the nonprofit sector.

Pepperdine School of Law dean Ken Starr will deliver the keynote address. Additional conference speakers include scholars, rabbis, and community leaders such as Seaver College dean David Baird; R. Stephen Doan, a past Grand Master of Masons; Rabbi Edward M. Feinstein; David G. Holmes, a Pepperdine professor of English and scholar on the rhetoric of the Civil Rights Movement; Rabbi Sarah Hronsky; Col. (Ret.) Mark Hyatt, former director of the Center for Character Development at the USAF Academy and current charter school president; Hannah Karp, camper care coordinator for Camp Kesem UCLA; Hon. Philip K. Mautino, supervising judge of the Los Angeles Juvenile Court; Richard M. Peterson, director of Pepperdine School of Law's Special Education Advocacy Clinic; Lawrence O. Picus, professor at USC's Rossier School of Education; Fran E. Morris Rosman, executive director of the Ella Fitzgerald Charitable Foundation; Kala M. Stroup, former president of Southeast Missouri State University and now president of American Humanics, Inc.; and The Reverend William S. Trump, Jr., senior minister of the Congregational Church of the Chimes.

The conference cochairs are Pepperdine professors Regan Harwell Schaffer, executive director of the American Humanics Scholars, and David Karp, BSA relationships volunteer. Karp explains, "Our conference goal is to bring together our diverse community on common ground to discuss character in a serious, innovative, informative, educational, and inspiring setting."

The Eagle Scouts of the Western Los Angeles County Council BSA will participate in the opening and closing ceremonies, introduce and accommodate speakers, and usher attendees.

For more information and to register, please visit the Conference on Character Web site. All are welcome to attend, though space is limited.