A long-tenured Edinboro University professor emeritus and foremost authority on religion and bioethics has pledged a gift to Edinboro to establish a religious speaker circuit.
The Dr. James F. Drane Religious Speaker Fund, eponymously named for the founder of Edinboro’s bioethics institute, will promote a dynamic and thought-provoking speaker series, with experts who will address the topic of religion and the important role of spirituality in human life.
“This gift represents just one example of Dr. Drane’s commitment to Edinboro University,” said Marilyn Goellner, vice president of Edinboro’s Advancement Office. “We owe him our heartfelt appreciation for his generosity and visionary thinking. This gift will assist the university to continue and sustain ongoing discussions on religion and spirituality, providing engagement to both our students and the community. We are honored to extend his history of pushing boundaries and discovery into the future.”
Speakers associated with the Religious Speakers Fund will have achieved substantial national or international recognition and will initiate purposeful and significant discussions within our community concerning critical and contemporary cultural religious issues.
A committee of Edinboro University representatives, appointed by the Office of the Provost, will carefully consider the credentials and offerings of recommended academic religious speakers and will select a speaker on an annual basis for presentation to the campus community.
A former Russell B. Roth professor of Philosophy and Clinical Bioethics at Edinboro, Dr. Drane has been involved with bioethics since its beginnings in the 1960s. He has held visiting appointments at the University of Madrid, University of Tennessee Medical School, Kennedy Institute of Ethics and the Menninger School of Psychiatry.
Recipient of the Distinguished Teaching Chair of Pennsylvania, he has also received numerous grants and fellowships. He is the author of 20 books, including Caring to the End; Clinical Bioethics; Becoming a Good Doctor; Religion and Ethics; Quality of Life; Your Emotional Life; The Possibility of God; A New American Reformation; More Humane Medicine; and Medicine, Ethics, Religion: a Christian Bioethics, a Philosophy of Life.
His articles have appeared in Journal of the American Medical Association, Hastings Center Report, Health Progress and Linacre Quarterly.
Retired from his teaching responsibilities, he provides consultations and educational programs for hospitals, hospices and home health-care agencies in northwestern Pennsylvania and Latin America.
The oldest of 10 children, Dr. Drane and his family were unable to provide the opportunity for higher education. The Little Rock Diocese helped him to obtain degrees at four learning institutions: St. John's Seminary in Little Rock; the Gregorian University in Rome where he received a theology degree; Middlebury College in Vermont for a degree in romance languages; and the University of Madrid where he received his Ph.D. in philosophy.
After several years at Yale University, Drane became a professor at Edinboro University in the philosophy department and later became the Russell B. Roth Professor of Bioethics. His courses in philosophy and bioethics at Edinboro were highly sought after by students and many still recall the important things they learned from him decades earlier. In 2002, Drane was named one of the founders of the discipline of bioethics at The International Bioethics Conference in Brasilia.
For more information about Edinboro University’s Advancement Office, visit www.edinboro.edu/support.