The news of artist, environmental activist, documentary film producer and philanthropist Susan Swartz.

Harvard Divinity School Leading the Way

Jim & Susan Swartz, Barbara & Dean Bill Graham

Each spring, the Harvard Divinity School (HDS), of which Susan is a member of the Dean's Council, hosts a Leadership Day devoted to thinking through global issues about faith and religion.

This year, Susan was honored to say a few words about retiring dean, William A. “Bill” Graham. “Bill is one of the most open and warm people that I have ever known,” remarked Susan. “He [helped] me to understand how my art flowed from my spiritual self, connecting me with the work of this great institution and the progression of religious expression through art over time.”

During the 2012 HDS Leadership Day celebration, Dean Graham focused his speech on the theme that tackling religious illiteracy is crucial to peace and progress worldwide. Graham, who has been studying, teaching, and writing about religion for more than half a century, called religion one of the least-understood sectors of life for the majority of people worldwide. He also called for policymakers to have some grasp on the religious dimensions of life in other nations and for cultures and people to understand that their value systems are not uniquely valid,  good or applicable to everyone in the world. Watch Dean Graham's speech, Why Study Religion in the Twenty-first Century?

About Dean Graham’s departure from the HDS, Susan said, “We at the Divinity School are losing an incredibly talented leader and friend.”