D.B. Reinhart Institute for Ethics in Leadership

Lecture Series

The D.B. Reinhart Institute for Ethics in Leadership sponsors a series of lectures by internationally, nationally, and locally known speakers on a variety of topics related to ethics and leadership. 

The lectures are intended to be both informative and inspiring, and to address ethical issues in a variety of settings, including business, health care, science, religion, politics, and technology.


Dr. Erik Camayd-FreixasThe Postville Immigration Raid: Lessons Learned for the 21st Century
Thursday, November 9, 2017 - Dr. Erik Camayd-Freixas
7 p.m. - Fine Arts Center Main Theatre  

Dr. Erik Camayd-Freixas is Professor of Hispanic Studies at Florida International University (FIU).  A Harvard-trained communications analyst, social theorist, and expert linguist at federal and state courts, Dr. Camayd made international headlines with his essay, “Interpreting after the Largest ICE Raid in U.S. History: A Personal Account,” and with his book, U.S. Immigration Reform and Its Global Impact, where he denounces the criminalization of workers and the socioeconomic devastation of immigration enforcement in Postville, Iowa and beyond. He has testified before Congress, contributed as amicus curiae to the U.S. Supreme Court, and received human rights awards from the American Immigration Lawyers Association, Americans for Immigrant Justice, the Guatemalan Foreign Ministry, and the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers.


Duchess HarrisMartin Luther King, Jr. Celebration
Monday, January 15, 2018 - Duchess Harris
7 p.m. - Fine Arts Center Main Theatre  

Professor Harris is the Chair of the American Studies Department at Macalester College.  She is the author of four books. She co-authored Hidden Human Computers:  The Black Women of NASA, and Black Lives Matter with Sue Bradford Edwards, (Essential Library), authored Black Feminist Politics from Kennedy to Clinton/Obama (Palgrave Macmillan), and published an edited volume with Bruce Baum, Racially Writing the Republic: Racists, Race Rebels, and Transformations of American Identity (Duke University Press).

Professor Harris was a Mellon Fellow at the University of Pennsylvania. She graduated  in 1991 with a degree in American History and Afro-American Studies. Six years later, she earned a Ph.D. in American Studies from the University of Minnesota. She did postdoctoral fellowships at the Institute on Race and Poverty at the University of Minnesota Law School and at the Womanist Studies Consortium at the University of Georgia.

In 1998, Harris joined the faculty at Macalester College. She became the first Chair of the American Studies Department in 2003 and was granted tenure in 2004. In 2007 she decided that attending law school would allow her to expand the scope of her scholarship even further. In 2008, she was the only law student in the country chosen to be an Associate Editor for Litigation News, the American Bar Association Section's quarterly flagship publication.  In 2009, she won a $96,000 fellowship from the Bush Leadership Program, which encourages their recipients to create positive change in their communities.  In 2010, she enhanced the William Mitchell College of Law’s community and created positive change as the first Editor-in-Chief of Law Raza Journal, an interactive on-line race and the law journal. 

She earned a Juris Doctorate in January 2011, and has an expertise in Civil Rights Law. In 2015, The Minnesota Association of Black Lawyers chose her to receive "The Profiles in Courage Award."​​

​​This lecture is part of the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Community Celebration. Free and open to the public. No reservations required.


Steven RinellaThe Ethics of Hunting
Steven Rinella, 
host of the TV show MeatEater

Thursday, March 1, 2018 
7 p.m. - Fine Arts Center Main Theatre  

Steven Rinella is an outdoorsman, award-winning author, and host of the hit TV show MeatEater as well as the top-rated MeatEater podcast. Steven has spoken to a wide range of audiences about his life as a modern-day hunter-gatherer. With humor and irreverence, he discusses the hunting lifestyle, wild game, the ethics of hunting, and the spiritual need for wilderness. His talks are punctuated with stories of amazing and sometimes absurd adventures, such as getting poisoned by wild mushrooms, charged by a grizzly, bowled over by a moose, and nearly crushed by a wild boar that fell from the sky under very strange circumstances in the central highlands of the Philippines’ Luzon Island.

Rinella’s books include The Scavenger's Guide to Haute Cuisine; American Buffalo: In Search of a Lost Icon; Meat Eater: Adventures from the Life of an American Hunter; and the 2- volume series The Complete Guide to Hunting, Butchering, and Cooking Wild Game. His titles have been awarded the Sigurd F. Olson Nature Writing Award and the Pacific Northwest Booksellers Award, and American Buffalo was named one of the best fifty non-fiction books of the year by the San Francisco Chronicle. Rinella's writing has also appeared in a wide variety of popular publications, including Glamour, Men’s Journal, Outside, New Yorker, the New York Times, Salon.com, O the Oprah Magazine, Field and Stream, and the annual anthologies Best American Travel Writing (2003, 2010, 2014, and 2016) and Best Food Writing (2005, 2013). He is a frequent guest on radio and TV news programs such as CNN’s American Morning, Fox and Friends, and the NPR programs All Things Considered and Weekend Edition, where he discusses the hunting lifestyle. In 2011, Rinella hosted The Wild Within on Travel Channel. MeatEater premiered the next year on Sportsman Channel and is now in its sixth season.

Rinella was born in Twin Lake, Michigan, and has lived in Montana, Wyoming, Alaska, New York, and Washington. He currently resides in the Pacific Northwest and maintains a moldy hunting and fishing shack in southeast Alaska.

This lecture is part of the annual Aldo Leopold Day Celebration.  Free and open to the public. No reservations required. 


Estelle LaughlinEstelle Laughlin, Holocaust Survivor
Thursday, March 22, 2018
7 p.m. - Fine Arts Center Main Theatre  

Estelle Laughlin was born in Warsaw, Poland, on July 9, 1929 to Michla and Samek Wakszlak. Estelle also had an older sister, Freda, who was born in January 1928. Michla tended to the home and children while Samek ran a jewelry shop. Estelle and Freda attended the local public school.

Germany invaded Poland on September 1, 1939. The siege on Warsaw began a week after German forces invaded Poland. On September 29, shortly after Poland’s surrender, German forces entered Warsaw. Estelle and Freda were no longer able to attend the local public school. In October 1940 German forces decreed the establishment of a ghetto. The Wakszlak family and more than 400,000 Jews from the city and surrounding areas were forced to live in a 1.3 square mile area and to wear a white armband with a blue Star of David. The food allotments rationed to the ghetto by the German authorities were not sufficient to sustain life; however, Samek was able to get extra food for his family from the black market. From July to September 1942, 300,000 ghetto residents were deported to Treblinka II, an extermination camp. During this time Estelle and her family hid in a secret room to escape the deportations.

In April 1943 German forces made one last push to liquidate the remaining 55,000-60,000 Jews from the Warsaw ghetto to work or death camps. Samek, who helped to organize the resistance movement, built a bunker in which he and his family could hide during the Warsaw ghetto uprising. As SS and police units began roundups they were met with artillery fire from resistance fighters. In retaliation, the SS began razing the ghetto, block by block. The bunker where Estelle and her family were hiding, which was in the basement of a house, was exposed by a bomb. Everyone was dragged out onto the street. The Wakszlak family was marched to the umschlagplatz (concentration point), forced to board freight train cars, and transported to Lublin/Majdanek.

Upon arrival at Majdanek the women and men were separated. Estelle, Michla, and Freda were chosen for forced labor but Samek was sent to the gas chamber. The women moved turf from one place outside the camp to another. At one point Freda was badly beaten by a German guard and could not work. She hid in the barracks, but was discovered. Her name was put on what she thought was a gas chamber list. Estelle and Michla switched places with two women who were on the same list, thus believing that the remaining Wakszlak family members could die together. Michla, Estelle, and Freda were, instead, sent to the Skarzysko concentration camp to work in a munitions factory. Later, they were sent to the Czestochowa concentration camp to work in a different munitions factory.

Soviet forces liberated Czestochowa in January of 1945. To escape pogroms in Poland the three women moved to Bavaria in August 1945 and lived there until 1947, when they moved to the United States to join Michla’s two sisters and brother in New York City. Estelle is a volunteer at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum.


Terese AgnewWriting in Stone
Monday, September 11, 2017 - Terese Agnew
7 p.m. - Fine Arts Center Main Theatre    

Writing in Stone is a  large-scale, collaborative art work that incorporates the work of dozens of artists, writers, historians, performers, and skilled craftsmen. Writing in Stone is an immersive art experience that honors selfless ideas and efforts from leaders and ordinary citizens in Wisconsin’s past who worked to make life better for future generations. The exhibit is traveling the state and comes to Viterbo with five new monuments.  It includes a new hands-on “Memory Book” that artist Peggy Krzyzewski is creating and South West Wisconsin students are writing! 

Terese Agnew’s artworks can be found in the permanent collections of the Museum of Arts and Design in New York,  the Smithsonian American Art Museum, Renwick Gallery in Washington D.C., Merton College, Oxford in the UK,  The Milwaukee Art Museum, the John M Walsh III Collection of Contemporary Art Quilts and numerous other private collections.  She has been featured in the PBS Craft in America Series and in 2012, received the Wisconsin Visual Art Lifetime Achievement Award.

“I have always been fascinated with how the work of art becomes an artwork. My early work included large-scale installations that engaged hundreds of people in the art making process.  Their involvement demonstrated the potential for people’s labor to become a form of creative public communication. Iron Workers and engineers that participated in various art projects for example, contributed to the visual experience in meaningful ways.  In 1991, I started making quilts in addition to sculpture.  My quilts are intricately detailed;  embroidered with up to 14 layers of hand guided machine stitching and then hand quilted.  It is often solitary, repetitious work.”

Agnew’s best  known artwork:  Portrait of a Textile Worker, is a quilt constructed with over 30,000 clothing labels contributed from people from across the globe.  She says of the work:  “The repetition and effort of thousands of people cutting out their clothing labels is retained in the piece, giving it the impact of a chorus of voices”.

Terese AgnewWriting in Stone Exhibit
The exhibit is free and open to the public.

Dates on display: September 11 - 13, 2017
Hours: 8am-8pm
Locations: Viterbo University Fine Arts Center; Assisi Courtyard

Writing in Stone takes viewers through a setting of towering monuments, painted as if by the soot of ages.   The monument sculptures serve as an evolving stage set for a multi-media experience that incorporates "living statues," oral history, sound recordings, and opportunities for the audience to contribute to a message of hope and perseverance.

“From a distance, the monuments may evoke a cemetery,” says Agnew, “but the magic of Writing in Stone is that up close everything is surprisingly alive.” As viewers walk among the monuments, pondering engraved texts, history comes to life around them. They discover figures from the past that preserved and championed the places and rights that we enjoy today.  They may encounter living statues and speaking trees.  Each monument is an example of selfless leadership and people who looked beyond their own desires to make the future more just and life affirming for everyone.

“Writing in Stone began with walks through the tiny hilltop cemetery near my home,” Agnew said. “It grew from a deep awareness that in these times of sweeping change and uncertainty it’s more essential than ever not to forget the best and most honorable people and ideas of the past. The axis of the future spins on what we remember, and what we choose to honor as a culture and community.”

With a “small army” of collaborators, including Diane Dahl, Elliot Medow, Peggy Krzyzewski,  Judy Woodburn,  Jim Krenn, Rick Kyte and Gene and Lynette Lombard, (to name a FEW) Agnew has taken more than two years to create 24 monuments. In selecting material for inclusion, they drew heavily on works published by the Wisconsin Historical Society Press. Invitations were sent to members of book clubs across the state to read from a list of selected titles and to identify the stories and ideas that spoke to them most personally and forcefully. “The project is a really innovative connection of these voices of the past with viewers of the present,” says Kathy Borkowski, WHS Press director. “It’s an important work for our times.”

Pieper PowerWriting is Stone is very grateful to our lead sponsor: Pieper Electric for making the project possible, along with The Kickapoo Cultural Exchange, Viterbo University, The Wisconsin Arts Board, The Greater Milwaukee Foundation and generous contributions from many individuals.


Eva SchlossMonday, September 18, 2017- Eva Schloss, Holocaust Survivor, Anne Frank's childhood friend and stepsister 
7 p.m. - Fine Arts Center Main Theatre    

In 1938, Germany invaded Austria, causing many Jewish families to flee. Among the emigrants was eight-year-old Eva Geiringer, who with her mother, father, and brother moved first to Belgium and then to Holland, where one of her neighbors was a German Jewish girl of the same age.

The two girls became friends and playmates. Ultimately, both girls and their families were deported to the Auschwitz concentration camp. Later they would become stepsisters.

Schloss survived her concentration camp experience and made her way to England, where she married Zvi Schloss and raised three daughters. Her stepsister did not survive Auschwitz, but kept a diary that did. Her name was Anne Frank.

Since 1985, Schloss has devoted herself to Holocaust education and global peace. She has recounted her wartime experiences in more than one thousand speaking engagements. She has written two books and has had a play written about her life. 

Eva Schloss“Paintings Created in Hiding” by Erich and Heinz Geiringer
The exhibit is free and open to the public.

Dates on display: September 11-24, 2017
Hours: 8am-8pm
Location: Fine Arts Center, Viterbo University

In 1942, Erich and Fritzi Geiringer, and their children, 16–year old Heinz and 13-year old Eva, were living in Amsterdam, Holland in the same apartment building as Anne Frank and her family.  Like the Franks, the Geiringers had come to Holland several years earlier, where they had thought they would be safe from the Nazis.

In July of 1942, their lives were changed forever.  The Germans were now in control of Holland, and they began rounding up Jews throughout Amsterdam.  The Geiringers, like many of their Jewish neighbors, were forced to go into hiding.  Unable to find a hiding place together, the family separated – Heinz going with his father, and Eva with her mother.  In 1944, Eva, Heinz and their parents, Erich and Fritzi, were among the captured Jews and other people being transported to the Nazis' Auschwitz-Birkenau death camp. On the way Heinz – a talented musician, artist and poet – told his sister where he'd hidden paintings he and his father had created in hiding.  Heinz stashed the 30 paintings under floorboards of the Amsterdam attic where they'd lived before being captured by Germans.  Eva, and her mother Fritzi Geiringer returned to Amsterdam and saved the paintings after the war.  This exhibit is a collection of prints from Erich and Heinz Geiringer.


Recurring Events