The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga

Dr. Frederick Buechner

Connor Society Brings Frederick Buechner to Campus

Writer and theologian Dr. Frederick Buechner will speak on Sunday, April 18th at
5:30 p.m. in the Dorothy Hackett Ward Theatre during an evening dedicated to the memory of the late UTC Guerry professor of English George Connor. The event was originally scheduled in January, but was postponed due to inclement weather.

Buechner and Chattanooga physician Dr. Clifton Cleaveland will engage in a conversation about the life of Connor and other topics during a presentation at the Dorothy Hackett Ward Theater on the UTC campus. It is free and open to the public.

Buechner is the author of more than 30 works of fiction and nonfiction, including novels, memoirs and theological writings. His works include The Sacred Journey, Whistling in the Dark and Godric. His writings have been runner-up for the Pulitzer Prize, nominated for the National Book Award and honored by the American Academy of Arts and Letters Award in Literature.

Connor and Buechner, who lives in Vermont, became friends after Buechner spoke at UTC during the school’s centennial celebration in 1986. They visited in each other’s homes on several occasions and corresponded frequently.

Prior to the program in the Ward Theater, the Connor Society and UTC will hold a reception welcoming Buechner back to campus. The reception will be held in the Patten House from 4-5 p.m.

Admission to the reception is $25. Individuals who would like to attend the reception are asked to write a check to the Connor Society of the UC Foundation and mail it to The Connor Society, 732 Cherry Street, Chattanooga 37402.

“Proceeds from the reception will be used to help fund the establishment of an annual program that celebrates George Connor’s life and the passions and high principles by which he lived,” Cleaveland said.

Connor joined the University in 1959. He was head of the English Department from 1963-69 and executive assistant to the Chancellor from 1967-70. When he retired from UTC in 1985, the George Connor Professorship in American Literature was established in recognition of his 26 years of service.