Lillian and Don Bauder

The most consistently generous support for The Contemporary American Authors Lecture Series has come from Dr. Lillian Bauder, president emerita of the Cranbrook Educational Community, former Masco Corporation vice president, and former president and chair of the Masco Foundation. She and her late husband Don Bauder found in the series a way to act upon their deep commitment to the work of African American writers. In 2003, President Price announced that they had generously endowed the series, and from then on, the evening event has been called the Lillian and Don Bauder Lecture--or simply The Bauder Lecture.

In 2011, seeking to increase Detroit high school students’ participation in the series and honor Mary Helen Washington’s contributions to American letters, Lillian and Don endowed the Mary Helen Washington Writing Contest, which has in recent years added community writing awards for adult contestants.

Edward P. Jones with Lillian and Don Bau

Lillian and Don Bauder with Edward P. Jones in 2005