Sunday Evening Forum revived after 30 years

Former Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor
Former Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor

The Sunday Evening Forum, which ran from 1947 to 1984, will return to Tucson on Sunday, March 30 with former Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor as the keynote speaker.

Former Arizona Supreme Court Justice Stanley Feldman
Former Arizona Supreme Court Justice Stanley Feldman

Former Arizona Su­preme Court Justice Stanley Feldman will interview O’Connor. The free event will be held at the Fox Theatre.

The original Sunday Evening Forum started as a young adult discussion group and became, at one time, the nation’s largest community forum, with a peak attendance of 55,000. It brought to Tucson prominent political and culture figures, often before their heyday. Guests included future presidents John F. Kennedy, Ronald Reagan and Gerald Ford; political activists from Eleanor Roosevelt and Martin Luther King, Jr., to Margaret Sanger; news and entertainment luminaries such as Walter Cronkite, Bob Hope and Jackie Robinson; and dignitaries from around the world, including future Nobel Peace Prize winner Yitzhak Rabin.

A group of local leaders has come together to revive the forum. Judge Anne Segal, who remembers attending the original Sunday Evening Forums as a child, gathered an organizing committee and took the idea to Mayor Jonathan Rothschild, who also remembered the series from his youth.

O’Connor, who is kicking off the new series, grew up on a ranch along the Arizona-New Mexico border and served two terms in the Arizona state senate. In 1981, she made history as the first woman justice to serve on the Supreme Court. She retired in 2006.

Tickets will be available at the Fox Theatre box office on March 30 beginning at 4 p.m. Doors open at 6 p.m. and the event will start at 6:30 p.m. For more information, go to www.sundayeveningforum.com.