125th Anniversary of Chicago's Architectural Masterpiece: The Auditorium Building
Roosevelt University/8th Annual Herb & Eileen Franks Seminar
Featuring Blair Kamin, Rick Kogan, and Brett Batterson
Monday, Dec 15, 2014
Blair Kamin was born in Red Bank, New Jersey. Kamin is a graduate of Amherst College, from which he received a Bachelor of Arts with honors in 1979, and the Yale University School of Architecture, from which he received a Master of Environmental Design in 1984. He was a Regents Park Fellow at the University of Chicago in 1998. In 2012-13, Kamin was a fellow at the Nieman Foundation for Journalism at Harvard University. Kamin holds honorary degrees from Monmouth University and North Central College, where he serves as an adjunct professor of art. He has lectured widely and has discussed architecture on programs ranging from ABC's "Nightline" to WTTW-Ch. 11's "Chicago Tonight." The University of Chicago Press has published two critically-acclaimed collections of Kamin's columns: "Why Architecture Matters: Lessons from Chicago" (2001) and "Terror and Wonder: Architecture in a Tumultuous Age" (2010). He also wrote the commentaries for "Tribune Tower: American Landmark," a guide to the newspaper's neo-Gothic skyscraper published in 2000, and co-authored "The Gates of Harvard Yard," an e-book published by the Nieman Foundation in 2013. Kamin is the recipient more than 30 awards, including the Pulitzer, which he received in 1999 for a body of work highlighted by a series of articles about the problems and promise of Chicago's greatest public space, its lakefront. He has twice served as a Pulitzer Prize juror.
Rick Kogan was born and raised and still lives in Chicago. Kogan has worked for the Chicago Daily News, Chicago Sun-Times and the Chicago Tribune, where he is currently a senior writer and columnist. Named Chicago's Best Reporter in 1999 and inducted into the Chicago Journalism Hall of Fame in 2003, he is currently host of “After Hours with Rick Kogan” on WGN." He is the author of a dozen books, including "Everybody Pays: Two Men, One Murder and the Price of Truth" (with Maurice Possley), "America's Mom: The Life, Lesson and Legacy of Ann Landers," "A Chicago Tavern," the history of the Billy Goat, and "Sidewalks I" and "Sidewalks II," collections of his columns and the work of photographer Charles Osgood.
Brett Batterson is the Executive Director of the Auditorium Theatre of Roosevelt University. Built in 1889, the National Historic Landmark Auditorium Theatre has been ranked by Crain’s as one of the five largest not-for-profit performing arts institutions in the city. Prior to the Auditorium, Brett spent 10 years at Michigan Opera Theatre in Detroit, serving as that company’s Chief Operating Officer. His first 15 year careerwas as a Scenic Designer/Technical Director. Batterson serves on the boards of The League of Chicago Theatres and Illinois Presenter’s Network. He also serves on the advisory boards of Ensemble Espanol Spanish Dance Theatre, Kalapryia Center for Indian Performing Arts and Giordano Dance Chicago. He has been recognized by the state of Michigan for his contributions to Michigan’s cultural life and in 2009 received a State Farm Insurance Company “Embrace Life” Award as the creator of Hands Together, Heart to Art, a camp for children who have experienced the death of a parent. In 2009, 2011 and 2013, Brett was recognized as one of the 50 most influential people in Chicago theatre by New City News. Most recently, the Auditorium received an inaugural “Fifth Star” Award from Mayor Rahm Emanuel and the city of Chicago, the only theatre in Chicago to be so recognized. Brett holds a B.A. from Augsburg College and a M.F.A. from Tulane University. He is married to author Veronica Randolph Batterson.