Cecile Richards speaking at Catholic university in SF Archdiocese

Dominican University was founded in 1890 as Dominican College by the Dominican Sisters of San Rafael

Cecile Richards, president of Planned Parenthood, addresses an Organizing for Action summit in Washington, Monday, July 22, 2013. (AP Photo/Cliff Owen)

Cecile Richards, a national leader for women’s rights and social and economic justice, has been added to the Institute for Leadership Studies (ILS) 2018 Spring Leadership Lecture Series at Dominican University of California.

The series is presented by Dominican in partnership with Book Passage.

Ms. Richards, who recently announced that she is retiring as president of the Planned Parenthood Federation of America, is scheduled to speak at Dominican on Thursday, April 12, at 7 p.m. to discuss her memoir Make Trouble: Standing Up, Speaking Out, and Finding the Courage to Lead – My Life Story. She will appear on stage in conversation with Book Passage co-owner Elaine Petrocelli.

Ms. Richards, daughter of late Texas Governor Ann Richards, has been president of Planned Parenthood Federation of America and president of Planned Parenthood Action Fund since 2006. She was a featured speaker at the Women’s March on Washington last year, and a “heroine of the resistance” (Vogue) who has spent a lifetime fighting for social justice and women’s rights.

Ms. Richards joins an ILS 2018 Spring Lecture Series lineup that includes award-winning novelist and short story writer George Saunders (Feb. 5) longtime journalist and activist Maria Shriver (March 14), One Book One Marin honoree Arlie Russell Hochschild (April 18) and former United States Secretary of State Madeleine Albright (April 28).

The speaker series, a cooperative effort between Dominican’s Institute for Leadership Studies and Book Passage, features some of the country’s leading figures from the worlds of business, politics, entertainment, academia, and literature. The series has entertained and educated thousands of Marin County and San Francisco Bay Area residents for the past 14 years.

The Institute for Leadership Studies’ Spring 2018 Leadership Lecture Series is sponsored by Private Ocean, the oldest and largest privately-held wealth management firm in Marin County. Private Ocean’s commitment to community service has been a driving force behind its support of the lecture series.

Full story Dominican University website.


  1. It must be a community service to kill unborn defenseless babies. It must be courageous to pull them out piece by piece. What a heroine to make sure that babies of color, babies of the poor, babies of unmarried are never allowed to be held, loved and fed. I am so glad that the rights of married women with jobs are not interfered with by an inopportune arrival of a dependent.

  2. Anonymous says:

    I can’t find a cross nor reference to being Catholic on the school’s website. Here is its mission statement:

    Dominican educates and prepares students to be ethical leaders and socially responsible global citizens who incorporate the Dominican values of study, reflection, community and service into their lives. The University is committed to diversity, sustainability and the integration of the liberal arts, the sciences and professional programs.

    No mention of Catholic faith nor identity.

    • Anonymous says:

      Today Dominican University of California continues to operate as an independent, co-educational, liberal arts university with both undergraduate and graduate programs. Our sisters still serve on the faculty and Board of Trustees.

      • Bohemond says:

        Utter nonsense they are traitors to the Faith and to Christ.

      • Anonymous says:

        The online website- of what I read- makes no mention of Dominican being a Catholic University or following Dominican tradition.There are 3 nuns listed on the board of trustees; other than that, it appears to be a typical liberal arts school with no obvious connection to or endorsements of traditional Catholic teaching. Phew- that makes me feel better! You’d never see Ms. Planned Parenthood Richards at Franciscan U in Ohio.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Catholics don’t support Planned Parenthood.

  4. I am highly embarrassed to have to admit that I am a graduate of Dominican College of San Rafael (1968), now known as Dominican University of California. This one time great Catholic institution has now sold its soul to diversity and touts lecturers whose beliefs go against Catholic moral teachings, all in the name of being avant-garde.

    • Marietta says:

      Mary Jo,

      Is this the same university that not too long ago removed the statues of Our Lord and Lady from its front garden?

      There seems to be something wrong going on with the Dominican Sisters of San Rafael. One of their Sisters, along with a Dominican priest, led a Lentenl mission some years ago (in our parish in northern East Bay) and it was she who delivered the homily during Mass. How. Dare. She.

      Another Sister currently conducts a class on the Bible according to Raymond Brown. In it she insists that the Infancy Narrative in the Gospel of Luke was fiction. That the writers of Luke merely invented it upon realizing that Jesus was a great man and needed to be given a childhood. Just like Washington, she said. Nobody knew…

  5. DJByrnes says:

    Would Howard University bring in Gov. George Wallace to speak at their Business School because they admired his views on tax reform?

  6. Faithful and True says:

    How utterly pitiable from every angle. Procuring or promoting abortion is a grave sin. God’s mercy cover you Dominican sisters for offering such an abomination as this talk by this woman. God’s judgment is on your heads. Leading others into mortal sin (and scandal) is also a grave matter. Better for each of you to have a millstone tied around your necks and thrown into the river as Christ said than to cause any of His “little ones” to stumble. God help you all. Pathetic and hollow mouthpiece of modernism.

  7. Sean McDermott says:

    What a travesty. This person is for women’s rights, yet stands by silently as her organization kills unborn little girls?

    The good St. Dominic must be ashamed at an institution bearing his name giving this reprobate a microphone and an audience. God help us…

  8. FrMichael says:

    Utterly wicked and corrupt. Not a shred of evidence in that statement of the Catholic Faith.

    • Fr Michael you are absolutely correct. Just have a quick look at Dominican’s web page. No mention of it being a Catholic institution. They should be totally honest and change their name to something like San Rafael University of Fine Arts and Sciences. I’m fortunate in that during my days there it was proudly Catholic. Then to top it off I had the privilege of spending almost seven years in Rome at the Angelicum!

  9. helen wheels says:

    At this point, I’m sure Dominican University
    has zero problem in its “corporate consciousness”
    inviting Richards to speak. To objectors, I’m sure
    they would offer this defense (along with many others):
    “You may object to her values, BUT she IS an
    accomplished LEADER.”
    Ha, ha ha putative “leaders,” like Richards,
    are really just well-paid,
    well-publicised STOOGES for the real leaders
    who remain, most conveniently, behind the scenes.
    I suggest renaming their endeavor the
    Stoogship Lecture Series – Highly Paid Flunkies
    Banking the Cash for Selling Their Souls.

  10. helen wheels says:

    as I mentioned earlier, I’d have no problem
    with Richards as a speaker if they re-named
    the thing something like “The Stooge Lecture Series.”
    Further to the Truth-in-Advertising theme, they
    should re-name their institution “Dumbinican University.”
    Have at it, Dumbinican. Next speaker in the series:
    Stormy Daniels.

  11. Claudia G says:

    Obviously, Archbishop Cordeleone is a shepherd who looks the other way as the little lams at Dominican University are gobbled up by the Abortion Queen.

    Whenever there is corrupt or ignorant leadership, the result is that the most vulnerable take a beating.

  12. Vince Ryan says:

    The university, “incorporates the Dominican values of study, reflection, community and service. ” Saint Dominic would remind them that those are all well and good but are entirely beside the point without values serving holiness. Here’s a suggestion to the university if it wants to update it’s brand, The Woeminican University of California.

  13. Evil being invited in through the front door – this university is opening itself up for some new fresh hell to be visited upon it. Well deserved folks, you asked for it.

  14. By way of comparison to the Richards invitation, Bishop Olson, Diocese of Fort Worth, along with the TCCB, indefinitely banned the Texas Right to Life from all church properties this last February.

  15. Linda Maria says:

    At the end of Vatican II, Catholic institutions feared for their future existences—- they no longer were required to abide by Church teaching, and all responsible Church authority and leadership was abandoned, in favor of individual freedom, beliefs, and autonomy. Financial chaos resulted from the collapse of our traditional Church— many institutions ended.

    • Linda Maria says:

      It has been a real struggle for Catholic institutions to survive, since the Council– with lack of good Church leadership, lack of money, and nuns and priests leaving by the. thousands!! So many of our Catholic institutions have tragically sold their souls to the Devil!!

      • Linda Maria says:

        Cecile Richards and her Planned Parenthood employees and supporters,, all ought to be in JAIL for M-U-R-D-E-R!!!

  16. From the Sisters website (apparently, the unborn don’t matter…):
    Since 1981, after prayer, study, reflection and discussion among ourselves, our congregation
    has taken public stances on justice issues, including sanctuary for refugees, abolition of the death penalty, disarmament and the elimination of nuclear weapons, trafficking of human beings, and compassionate immigration reform. We have also, as a body, endorsed the Earth Charter.

  17. Anonymous says:

    Popular across the United States and throughout the world, One Book programs take the idea of a localized book discussion club and expand it to cover a whole city or county. The city, county and college libraries of Marin, and community partners Book Passage and the Institute for Leadership Studies at Dominican University of California collaborate to bring Marin County readers stimulating programming and events related to the book throughout a three-month period, February – April, each year. All events are free and open to the public.

  18. Anonymous says:

    Why wouldn’t they allow her to talk?
    Here is an article about getting birth control from the student newspaper/

    There additional resources page also carries a link to a birth control support webpage;

  19. Just to let you all know that per Patrick Reilly of the Cardinal Newman Society…….

    It is important to make Catholic families aware that Dominican University of California is NO LONGER
    RECOGNIZED as a Catholic University by CHURCH AUTHORITY!! 🙂

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