Soup & Hope

For more than a decade, dozens of Soup & Hope speakers have touched, inspired, motivated, and stirred the hearts of those who gather during the winter months at Sage Chapel. Stories have come from a wide range of Cornell staff, faculty, students, alumni, and community members. They are shared among friends and colleagues, over bowls of hot soup & bread.

2019 Winter Series

All Soup & Hope talks take place in Sage Chapel from Noon to 1PM on Thursdays.

Soup & Hope speakers for 2019. See web text, below.

If you would like a printed poster (or a pdf file), please contact Jennifer Austin.


Additional speaker photos and bios will be added here throughout the semester.

Shirley M. Collado January 17
Shirley M. Collado

Soup & Hope provides Ithaca College’s ninth president, Shirley M. Collado, with an opportunity to share her impressions of the Ithaca community and her gratitude for the warm welcome she’s found here. She explores the importance of living and leading with authenticity, courage, and a deep sense of connection to one’s journey. President Collado will reflect on how perseverance and resilience—her own and that of her family—have grounded and galvanized her approach to leadership, education, and honoring our shared humanity. [An audio recording of this talk is coming soon.]

Bill AlbertaJanuary 31
Bill Alberta

Bill Alberta has a Cornell degree and worked in Cornell Career Services, mainly as a director and counselor, for thirty years. Bill is the founder of The Cornell Elves Program, which helps more than 1,000 children in 40 local schools and provides approximately $160,000 in new clothing, toys, backpacks and warm blankets each year. Using stories and examples, Bill will talk about the power of kindness and how it has influenced his life. [Listen to an audio recording of Bill's talk.]


Cal WalkerFebruary 14
Cal Walker

Cal came to Ithaca in 1976 as a field sales representative with Procter & Gamble. After 15 years, he transitioned to Cornell where he recently retired after 25 years of service. He has a strong commitment to community-building and has consistently worked to advance social justice, educational access and equity, and positive youth development. Hope has been an essential element in many of Cal's life experiences. While it is often said that “ hope is not a strategy," he firmly  believes it depends on what one's hope is anchored in! Cal will share from his experiences going through a life-threatening illness, how a steadfast hope helped bring him through it, and how that “ interruption" led to an invitation. [Listen to an audio recording of Cal's talk.]


Placeholder Photo of Profile PictureFebruary 28
Imani Majied

Imani is a social entrepreneur, Sufi practitioner, sister to four, and aspiring global citizen. In her junior year at Cornell, she and her co-founder began their social enterprise, Everybody Eats, with the vision of providing food-insecure individuals and families with affordable and convenient meals. Imani continues to work with her team to make Everybody Eats a reality and is also excited to join Deloitte after graduation to help innovate the public sector. Imani will explore how her passion for social entrepreneurship has been lead by her gut instinct. [Listen to an audio recording of Imani's talk.]


Placeholder Photo of Profile PictureMarch 14
Angela Winfield

Angela  is the Associate Vice President for Inclusion and Workforce Diversity at Cornell University. She is an attorney, a published author, a professional motivational speaker and coach, a real estate investor, a wife, and an avid foodie and yogi. The experience of losing her sight and navigating the world as a blind woman has shaped her perspective on life, the world, herself and other people. She will talk about how the power of possibility, uncertainty, curiosity and change have been an unexpected source of hope for her. [Listen to an audio recording of Angela's talk.]


Placeholder Photo of Profile PictureMarch 28
Riché Richardson

Riché Richardson, who is originally from Montgomery, Alabama, is currently an associate professor in the Africana Studies and Research Center at Cornell. Her essays have appeared in a range of books and journals. Her first book, Black Masculinity and the U.S. South:  From Uncle Tom to Gangsta , was highlighted by Choice Books among the "Outstanding Academic Titles of 2008." Since 2005, she has served as co-editor of the New Southern Studies book series at the University of Georgia Press. She is also a visual artist who was invited to Paris as a "Cultural Envoy" of the U.S. Embassy in France in 2009.


Future Speaker Nomination

If you have a suggestion for future speakers who could speak to the idea of hope by sharing a personal story or perspective, please email a member of the Planning Committee and tell us:

  • The name of the person you'd like to recommend
  • How this person is connected to the Cornell community
  • Why you feel they have a great story to tell
  • Your name, and how we may contact you to learn more

Soup & Hope Planning Committee

  • Christopher Lujan, Chair—Office of Sprituality and Meaning Making/LGBT Resource Center
  • Jennifer Austin—Cornell Health
  • Tracey Brant - Cornell Engineering, Kessler Fellows Program
  • Karen M. Brigham—Cornell Health
  • Kelly Chan —Academic Technologies
  • Kristine DeLuca—Cornell Commitment
  • Nancy Doolittle—University Relations
  • Linda Falkson—University Ombudsman
  • Linda Mikula—University Relations
  • Doreen Silva—Cornell United Religious Work
  • Karen Williams—Cornell Health
  • Amanda Barrett Wittman—Office of Engagement Initiatives
  • Victor Younger—School of Hotel Administration, Cornell College of Business

Co-Sponsors and Supporters

Soup & Hope is sponsored by Cornell Dining, Cornell United Religious Work (CURW), and Cornell Health. Additional support comes from Academic Technologies, the Office of Alumni Affairs, Cornell Commitment, Cornell Engineering, Kessler Fellows Program, Engaged Learning + Research, the Office of the Ombudsman, School of Hotel Administration, and University Relations.