Memorial Finale for Pipes Distinguished Lecture Series

Len, Ernie, and Marguerite

The Pipes Lecture Series will have its Finale on Saturday, May 7 at 5:30 pm in the Sanctuary with memorials to three pillars of the lecture series committee, Leonard Adler, Rev. Ernie Pipes, and Marguerite Spears, pictured above. All three died last year within six months of one another. The committee felt it a fitting time to put on this final event.

Entertainment will be provided by accomplished gospel singer Linda Alvarez; her Mahalia Jackson Tribute Show accompanist, Severn Behnen, who is also Music Director at the UU Palos Verdes church; and William Bryant, Santa Monica College’s Emeritus Gospel Music Choir Director. Bryant’s early career involved working with Motown artists.

We plan to record these events for the church’s record and for those who may not be able to attend. Light refreshments will follow in Forbes Hall.

— Diana Spears and Patrick McGuire


About the Pipes Distinguished Lecture Series

The Pipes Lecture Fund was established in 1991 to honor Rev. Ernest D. Pipes upon his retirement after 35 years in the Santa Monica pulpit. The founding members of the committee (Leonard and Elizabeth Adler, Ray and Betty Goodman, Patrick McGuire, and Marguerite Spears) collected monies for an annual free Pipes Distinguished Lecture Series of renowned guest speakers. The series continued yearly since 1991 with one interruption in 2018. There were no events in 2020 or 2021.

The series began with William Schultz, President of the Unitarian Universalist Association, and has included luminaries such as Ramona Ripston, Patt Morrison, Arianna Huffington, Michael Dukakis, George Takei, Father Gregory Boyle, and Reza Aslan. It resumed in 2019 with an organ recital — something Ernie had always desired because our organ was handpicked in Italy by the Goodmans to complement the acoustics of our Sanctuary. The committee was also able to provide money to repair our ailing organ.

Previous Speakers in the Ernest D. Pipes Distinguished Lecture Series
1st 1991 William Schulz, President of the Unitarian Universalist Association “Religion in The 21st Century”
2nd 1993 Deborah Prothrow-Stith, MD, Expert on Community Violence “Adolescent Violence and Its Impact On The Community”
3rd 1994 Rev. Peter Kreitler, Episcopal Minister, Historian/Educator “The Environment and the Church”
4th 1995 Ramona Ripston, Executive Director of the ACLU Foundation of Southern California “Equal Justice Under The Law”
5th 1996 Patt Morrison, LA Times and KCET Journalist and Commentator “Bumper Sticker Politics and Hair Spray News”
6th 1997 Rep. Anthony Beilinson, Former Member of US Congress “Politics: Past and Future Perspectives”
7th 1998 John B. Anderson, Former Member of US Congress; 1980 Candidate for US President “Why a Livable World Requires a Restructured and Empowered United Nations”
8th 1999 Kennard Lipman, PhD, University of Judaism “The Dancing Cosmos: What I Learned About God from Buddhism”
9th 2000 Robert Sheer, LA Times Journalist and Commentator “Sex, Politics, and Sheer in the 21st Century”
10th 2001 Margo Reeg, League of Women Voters of California “Make Every Vote Count”
11th 2002 Charles Haskell, MD, Chief Ethics Officer, US Department of Veterans Affairs “Health Care Ethics”
12th 2003 Arianna Huffington, Chief Editor of Huffington Post “How Corporate Greed and Political Corruption are Undermining America”
13th 2004 Erwin Chemerinsky, USC School of Law “Civil Liberties and the War on Terrorism”
14th 2005 Tom Plate, UCLA School of Public Policy “America and China, Odd Couple or Fatal Attraction?”
15th 2006 Michael Dukakis, Former Governor of Massachusetts; 1988 candidate for US President “The Health Care Crisis, 45 Million and Counting”
16th 2007 Dr. Gary Small, UCLA Center on Aging “Strategies for Living Better Longer”
17th 2008 Mike Farrell, Actor/Activist “Where Do We Go From Here?”
18th 2009 Tim Rutten, LA Times Journalist and Commentator “Does News Have a Future?”
19th 2010 George Takei, Actor/Activist “Embracing Change”
20th 2011 Father Gregory Boyle, Executive Director of Homeboy Industries and Anti-Gang Activist “The Power of Boundless Compassion”
21st 2012 Reza Aslan, PhD in Religions, Author or No god but God, and founder of “Islam in the 21st Century”
22nd 2013 Steven D. Goodman, PhD, California Institute of Integral Studies, San Francisco “Opening the Heart of Compassion: Buddhist Reflections”
23nd 2014 Sandy Banks, LA Times Journalist and Commentator “Foster Care: Behind the Headlines – The Pain and Promise of Broken Families”
24th 2015 James Dusenberry from Al Gore’s Climate Reality Project “Climate Change! Global Warming! CO2 Emissions!”
25th 2016 Rev. Dr. William Schulz, Executive Director of Amnesty International USA, President and CEO of the UU Service Committee “Seeing the Garden, Not Just the Wall”
26th 2017 Rev. Judith Meyer, UUSM Minister Emerita “Falling Out: Alienation and Community in Divisive Times.”
27th 2019 Organist Jeffrey Parola Organ Recital

2 thoughts on “Memorial Finale for Pipes Distinguished Lecture Series”

  1. Alison M Kendall

    A fitting way to honor three beloved and generous members of UUSM and a long history of thought-provoking and soul-stirring lectures. I look forward to watching and listening to the recording, Diana and Patrick. Thank you!

  2. Barbara Kernochan

    We leave tomorrow for the east coast, so will miss this event. Just wanted to send appreciation to the current Pipes Lecture team, Patrick and Diana for honoring these late greats. It was that first Schultz event that steered one of our daughters to work in juvenile justice, the ACLU, and Habitat for Humanity and eventually choose a career in law. These “pebbles” put forth by the Pipes Lecture series continue send forth ripples. Thank you.

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