Since 1984, the McGovern Lecture Series has been made possible through the generosity of internationally-regarded pediatric allergist, Dr. John P. McGovern. Dr. McGovern’s friendship with our department’s founder, Dr. Warren Schaller, led to a continuing legacy of financial support to us over the years. Past recipients of this honor have included:     

  • Dr. C. Everett Koop, former Surgeon General 
  • Dr. Henry Heimlich, medical innovator 
  • Mr. Robert Bazell, NBC science correspondent 
  • Graham Kerr, television’s “Galloping Gourmet”

Without question, this year’s award recipient is in extraordinary company…and he belongs there.  Physiology and Health Science is honored to present the 2011 McGovern Award to Kevin Jennings. 

Kevin Jennings is the chief executive officer of Be the Change, a nonprofit that creates national issue-based campaigns on pressing problems in American society such as economic opportunity and public service.

From 2009–2011, Jennings served as assistant deputy secretary of education, heading the office of Safe and Drug-Free Schools. Jennings led the Obama administration’s anti-bullying initiative, which culminated in March 2011 with the White House conference on Bullying Prevention keynoted by President Obama.

Jennings began his career as a high school history teacher. He served as the faculty advisor to the nation’s first Gay-Straight Alliance (GSA) at Concord (Mass.) Academy. In 1990, he founded the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network (GLSEN), a national education organization working to make schools safe for all students regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity. He holds a BA from Harvard, an MA from Columbia, and an MBA from New York University. He has authored six books, with his latest being Mama’s Boy, Preacher’s Son: A Memoir.

The lecture entitled Bullying: an Education and Health Crisis was attended by over 300 people.

If you missed it, it is available to be viewed as a video online, or you may download the PowerPoint presentation.

It will be available on DVD for use in Ball State University classrooms. If you need a copy, please contact Michelle Jones.