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Paul Rasor, director of the Center for the Study of Religious Freedom at Virginia Wesleyan College, will speak of "Faith, Freedom and the First Amendment: A Liberal Perspective" at the annual Friends of the Old Dominion University Library Author Dinner, scheduled for 6 p.m. Wednesday, March 29.

Rasor, a Unitarian Universalist minister, is the author of "Faith Without Certainty: Liberal Theology in the Twenty-First Century," published in 2005. As part of the program, the Friends of the Library Outstanding Achievement Award will be presented to Katherine T. Bucher, ODU professor of educational curriculum and instruction and director of the graduate program for K-12 school librarianship.

The dinner will be held in the North Cafeteria of Webb University Center at 6:30 p.m., preceded by a reception at 6 p.m. Tickets are $25 ($20 for life members), and checks made payable to Friends of the Library should be mailed to: Friends of the Library - Author Dinner, 229 Perry Library, Old Dominion University, Norfolk, VA 23529-0256. Reservations are due by Friday, March 24.

Rasor received his master of divinity degree from Harvard Divinity School in 1994 and doctorate of theology five years later from Harvard University. He earned law and music degrees from the University of Michigan, practiced law six years in New Mexico, and has been a professor of both law and theology. In the 1980s, he was involved in several human-rights and humanitarian missions to Guatemala and El Salvador during the height of the "death squad" atrocities and political "disappearances." In November 1989, he was involved in the investigation of the bombing of the offices of the group Mothers of the Disappeared when Jesuit priests were assassinated and nearby neighborhoods were strafed and bombed. Rasor has been called one of the few Unitarian theologians actively at work today, and his observations on the roots and directions of liberal theology in contemporary American culture spring from a kaleidoscope of perspectives.

Bucher joined the Old Dominion faculty in 1976. Previously, she was an elementary school librarian media specialist in Pennsylvania, a college librarian in Virginia and the head librarian in a city/county public library system in Alabama. She received her M.L.S. from Rutgers University and her doctoral degree from Auburn University.

Bucher has written two books, "Computers and Technology in School Library Media Centers" (Linworth, 1994) and "Information Technology for Schools" (Linworth, 1998). In addition, she has co-authored two books with ODU colleague M. Lee Manning: "Teaching in the Middle School" (Merrill/Prentice Hall, 2001) and "Classroom Management; Models, Applications, and Cases" (Merrill/Prentice Hall, 2003), with a third book, tentatively titled "Young Adult Literature," currently under contract with Merrill/Prentice Hall. She has also written essays on children's and young adult literature which have been widely published.

For more information about the dinner, contact Fern McDougal at 683-4141 or fmcdouga@odu.edu.

This article was posted on: March 3, 2006

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