Peggy Noonan, a Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist at the Wall Street Journal and a renowned speechwriter for President Ronald Reagan, will speak at the 14th annual Westmont President’s Breakfast on Friday, Feb. 22, from 7-9 a.m. in the Grand Ballroom of the Hilton Santa Barbara Beachfront Resort. Tickets cost $125 per person and go on sale Friday, Jan. 25, at 9 a.m. on the Westmont website (westmont.edu/breakfast). Seating is limited, and tickets are sold on a first-come, first-served basis.
Noonan’s weekly column, Declarations, has run since 2000, and she has written nine bestselling books on American politics, history and culture, including “What I Saw at the Revolution: A Political Life in the Reagan Era,” and “When Character Was King: A Story of Ronald Reagan.” She contributed an essay on the American presidency to “Character Above All” with nine other historians and writers. Her newest book, “The Time of Our Lives,” chronicles her career in journalism, the Reagan White House, and the political arena.
As Reagan’s special assistant and speechwriter, Noonan worked with the president on some of his most memorable speeches, including the on the 40th anniversary of D-Day, his farewell address, and his speech given the day of the Challenger disaster, which has been hailed as one of the 100 best speeches in American political history. As a speechwriter for then Vice President George H. W. Bush, she popularized the catchphrases “a kinder, gentler nation” and “a thousand points of light.”
In 2010 she received the Award for Media Excellence from the living recipients of the Congressional Medal of Honor; the following year The Week honored her as Columnist of the Year. In November 2016, the New York Public Library named her one of the city’s Literary Lions. A fellow at Harvard University’s Institute of Politics, she has taught in the history department at Yale University.
Noonan received the Pulitzer Prize for Political Commentary for her coverage of the 2016 Presidential Election, “rising to the moment with beautifully rendered columns that connected readers to the shared virtues of Americans during one of the nation’s most divisive political campaigns.”
The Westmont Foundation, local businesses and individuals sponsor the President’s Breakfast to promote discussion of significant issues. Bank of the West is the Lead Sponsor this year, and Gold Sponsors include Canterbury Consulting, Davies Public Affairs, HUB International of California, La Arcada Investment Corporation, Carl and Jo Lindros (Santa Barbara Securities), Bill and Kristin Loomis, MATT Construction, Lindsay and Laurie Parton, Santa Barbara Capital (David and Anna Grotenhuis and Wayne and Sharol Siemens), Warren and Mary Lynn Staley, Peter and Monique Thorrington and V3 Printing with special thanks to ACI Jet and Union Bank.
For sponsorship opportunities, please contact Steve Baker, Westmont associate vice president for college advancement, at (805) 565-7156.