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Founders Day 2011 Advance April 2011
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Widow of Space Shuttle Challenger Commander To Give Founders' Day Keynote

Posted on Tuesday, April 26, 2011 [11:07 AM]

COLUMBIA, Ky. -- The widow of the commander of the Space Shuttle Challenger will give the keynote address at this year's Lindsey Wilson College Founders' Day dinner.

June Scobee Rodgers will speak at 6 p.m. CT on Thursday, April 28, at LWC's Roberta D. Cranmer Dining & Conference Center.

Rodgers' husband Dick Scobee was commander of the Challenger when it exploded 73 seconds into flight on Jan. 28, 1986, and killed all seven crew members, including schoolteacher Christa McAuliffe.

In April 1986, the families of the Challenger astronauts founded the Challenger Center for Space Science Education to continue the crew's educational mission. Rodgers was founding chairwoman of the organization, which now has 48 space-education centers for schoolchildren worldwide.

Rogers is also the author of Silver Linings: Triumph of the Challenger 7, a 1996 book that tells the story of how the Challenger tragedy changed her life.

"June Scobee Rodgers is a wonderful speaker with an incredible story to tell, and I know people will thoroughly enjoy her message," said LWC President William T. Luckey Jr. "Founders' Day is always a special day in the Lindsey Wilson community, and we look forward to sharing this day with June Scobee Rodgers."

In addition to the annual Founders' Day dinner, the day will include honors convocation, which recognizes the college's top undergraduate students and most popular professors among the undergraduate students. That event will be held at 4 p.m. CT in the college's Biggers Sports Center.

Rodgers earned a doctorate from Texas A&M University, a master's degree from Chapman (Calif.) College and a bachelor's degree from Baptist College (now Charleston Southern College in South Carolina).

She has taught in every grade-level classroom -- from kindergarten through college -- and she has also served as program director for Texas A&M University Space Science Program.

In addition to her work with the Challenger Foundation, Rodgers is a member of the board of Guideposts magazine and the Vatican Observatory Foundation.

In 1989, she married Army Lieutenant General Don Rodgers. They live in Chattanooga, Tenn. They have three adult children and nine grandchildren.

For more information about Lindsey Wilson College Founders' Day, contact the college at or (270) 384-8047.

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