March 11, 2021

FMU’s Wattles to deliver Moran Address 

FMU’s Wattles to deliver Moran Address 

Dr. Will Wattles, former Chair of the Francis Marion University Department of Psychology and Walter D. Smith Professor of Psychology, will deliver the 12th William C. Moran Address on Thursday, March 25.

The address will be hosted at the FMU Performing Arts Center in downtown Florence at 4 p.m. 

The Moran Address is traditionally a platform for retiring faculty to deliver a memorable and poignant lecture that encompasses thoughts and ideas from both their area of study and their life experiences.

Dr. Wattles address, entitled “An Independent Life and a New Hero,” was initially slated for March 2020, but was postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Wattles retired at the conclusion of the spring 2020 semester.

Wattles was born in Waterville, Maine. He holds degrees from Tufts University, the University of Texas, the University of South Carolina, and finally, Illinois State University, where he received his Ph.D.  

Wattles found his way to Florence and Francis Marion University in 1995 when he accepted a position as an assistant professor within the Department of Psychology. 

In 2013, he ascended to the chair of the Department of Psychology. During his tenure as department chair, Wattles emphasized diversity and inclusion within the department, hiring the department’s first African-American staff member, the first two tenure-track African American professors, and three part-time instructors of color. The FMU African American Faculty and Staff Coalition honored Wattles for his efforts in 2016 by presenting him with the coalition’s annual Diversity Award. Wattles retired from FMU in 2020.

The Moran Address is named after Dr. William C. Moran, who was FMU’s vice president of Academic Affairs from 1978-1992, after which he served as President of Lander University.

During his career, Dr. Moran chaired or served on numerous civic, educational and charitable committees including  the United Way, the Boy Scouts of America, the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, the South Carolina Commission on Higher Education, the Peach Belt Conference, the South Carolina Association of State Colleges and Universities, and Kiwanis International.

In 2008, in recognition of Moran’s many contributions to South Carolina’s cultural and intellectual vitality, he received the Governor’s Award in the Humanities. Dr. Moran died in 2009. He is survived by, among others, his wife, Margaret and their son Thomas, and is remembered fondly by his many colleagues.