By Kara Blizzard –
The Chester Ronning Centre’s (CRC) director, David Goa, describes the Centre’s namesake as “one of Canada’s great citizens.” Chester Ronning was a politician, a diplomat and at one time the principal of Camrose Lutheran College, which evolved into Augustana.
CRC Distinguished Visiting Fellow Dr. Brian Evans is coming to Augustana to speak about Ronning. Dr. Evans teaches history at the University of Alberta’s north campus, and he had the opportunity to get to know Ronning. The first of two lectures will concern Chester Ronning’s political life which, according to Dr. Evans, has not been closely examined. He will discuss Ronning campaigning in Camrose, first as a United Farmers candidate and later as a Co-operative Commonwealth Federation candidate. The second lecture will focus on his diplomatic role, especially his involvement with China.
These lectures are important, because according to Goa, “Ronning is remembered in Camrose by many people, but of course as time goes on people forget.” Goa is “delighted that Brian, who has a very good book in him on Chester Ronning, is going to give these lectures.”
Dr. Evans looks forward to both sharing his knowledge and learning something new during his visit. He said, “When you go to Camrose and talk about Chester Ronning, there are going to be people in the audience who know a lot about him. So I hope that I will learn things that I don’t know.”
The Ronning Centre Endowment for Distinguished Visiting Fellows has helped bring several guests to Camrose. According to Goa, the endowment “gives us the ability to bring distinguished scholars and published intellectuals to Augustana so that all of us on the campus as well as the public in Camrose can benefit from their thinking and from some conversation with them about a great variety of issues.” Last semester’s lecturers included poet Tim Lilburn, as well as several scholars from the Muslim world.
Dr. Evans’ lectures will take place on January 19th and 26th at 7:00 p.m. in the Faith and Life Chapel.