The 2020-2021 Lecture Season is on Hiatus

due to the Coronavirus pandemic

Be Enlightened

& Entertained

Renowned Speakers

on the Saroyan Stage

Unique Points

of View

Who We Are

Our mission is to bring nationally and internationally renowned, thought-provoking speakers who inform, educate, and entertain our audience!

San Joaquin Valley Town Hall is a non-profit organization that is run by an all-volunteer board of directors.

Our daytime speaking events are held at the beautiful Saroyan Theatre.


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Join Us

We hope you’ll join us as we celebrate our 84th year of service to the San Joaquin Valley.


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Salman Khan

Educator | Innovator

One World Schoolhouse: Education Reimagined

Date Pending

Starting with tutorials posted on YouTube for his younger cousin, Khan has sparked a worldwide, educational phenomenon, inspiring teachers and students alike. Offering personalized instruction on topics ranging from preschool math to precalculus, English language to economics, students can accelerate their learning with a customized curriculum. Khan’s goal? Create a one world schoolhouse that opens the doors of education to all.

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Jon Meachum

American Historian, Pulitzer Prize Winning Author

Songs of America: the Music that Made a Nation

October 20, 2021 | 10:30am | William Saroyan Theatre

Presidential historian and Pulitzer Prize winner Jon Meacham celebrates the songs that define the American experience in a patriotic presentation showcasing historic songs recorded by country music star Tim McGraw. Based on their book ​Songs of America, Meacham illuminates the lyrics that have carried our country through times of struggle and celebration.

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Dr. Abraham Verghese

Physician, Best-selling Author, Professor

The Patient is the Story

November 17, 2021 | 10:30am | William Saroyan Theatre

Dr. Verghese, a physician and Stanford Medical School professor, eloquently draws on history, literature, and medical experience to reveal why human touch and the patient’s story are vital to doctor-patient relationships. A National Humanities Medal recipient and author of the bestselling novel ​Cutting for Stone​, Verghese’s uniquely humanistic approach to medicine resonates with the patient in all of us.

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Joel Sartore

National Geographic Nature Photographer

From Noah to Now: The Photo Ark

January 19, 2021 | 10:30am | William Saroyan Theatre

Award winning ​National Geographic​ photographer Joel Sartore takes us on his worldwide adventures, camera in tow, to share his incredible experiences developing the Photo Ark, a 25 year effort to document 12,000 vanishing species living in the world’s zoos and wildlife sanctuaries and build the single largest collection of animal studio portraits.

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Ruth Reichl

Food Writer, Restaurant Critic, Editor of Gourmet Magazine

A Nation of Foodies

February 09, 2022 | 10:30am | William Saroyan Theatre

New York Times’s ​first female restaurant critic, best selling author, and​ Gourmet’​s Editor-in-Chief Ruth Reichl weaves a delectable tale of America’s food journey and shares life lessons from the kitchen. Her fifty-year career in food, beginning as a chef trailblazing the farm-to-table movement, puts her at the forefront of America’s culinary revolution.

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Rick Steves

Travel Guru, Philanthropist, and Host of Rick Steves’ Europe on PBS

Travel Like A Local

March 16, 2022 | 10:30am | William Saroyan Theatre

Steves, a beloved PBS TV personality and travel writer, shows us how travel broadens our global perspective – all while having the time of our lives!

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Vijay Gupta

Violinist, Genius Fellow, Humanitarian

Changing Lives, Note by Note

April 20, 2022 | 10:30am | William Saroyan Theatre

Gupta will share his experience using music to heal, inspire and promote social connection and change for the homeless and forgotten people of our society.

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Featured Lecture Sponsors

Generous Anonymous Patron

The Frances F. Ermoian Memorial Lecture

Annette & Bob Smittcamp

Educational Employees Credit Union

Sharon Hanley Lecture

Harris Ranch Inn & Restaurant

Bernice and Jack Woolf Lecture

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