Pinkus-CraigOn April 1, Butler University will kick off its inaugural Conference on Ethics and Public Argumentation (CEPA), a four-day event hosted by the College of Communication to promote public dialogue and argumentation as a means to resolve major conflicts and cultural challenges.
The idea for the conference originated with two distinguished Butler alumni: Craig Pinkus, an attorney and partner with Bose McKinney & Evans LLP, and William Neher, professor emeritus and former interim dean of the College of Communication at Butler University.
“Watching the breakdown in communication and comity that has marked much of the red state/blue state political debate of the last generation, spilling over into all sorts of other hot-button social and cultural issues, Craig and Bill thought that Butler could make a contribution in advancing the ethical use of reasoning in public deliberation,” wrote Dr. Gary Edgerton, dean of the College of Communication.
Pinkus and Neher then worked with Dr. Edgerton and the College of Communication to spearhead the development of CEPA, recommending speakers and potential topics for discussion.
Conference sessions will feature local community leaders, visiting scholars, filmmakers, journalists and students, addressing the theme “Engaging the Community.” The keynote speaker, Rev. Dr. Allan Boesak, will speak on “Nelson Mandela’s Legacy as an Ethical Communicator.”
“Given the stakes of our present public and professional challenges, it is important that those interested in the possibilities of argumentation find new and innovative ways to encourage more effective and ethical public deliberation and civil debate,” wrote Dr. Edgerton.
Admission is free and open to the public. Seating may be limited and is available on a first-come, first-served basis. For more information, visit