The College of DuPage Speaker Series "COD Presents" features keynote presentations and facilitated conversations with prominent individuals from across the country who are using their resources, influence, creativity and passion to make a positive impact in the world. These candid dialogues with guests create an opportunity for COD students, faculty, staff and community members to exchange ideas and walk away inspired.
An Evening with Richard Montañez
Creative Force Behind Flamin' Hot Cheetos
7 p.m. Thursday, April 4, in Belushi Performance Hall at the McAninch Arts Center
From humbled beginnings as a Frito-Lay janitor to a rising company executive, inventor Richard Montañez inspired the creation of Flamin’ Hot Cheetos and other related products. His true grit, homage to Mexican culture and unwavering determination helped to disrupt the food industry to evolve the popular snacks into a billion-dollar enterprise and global cultural phenomenon.
After his presentation, Richard Montañez will sit down for an enlightening talk with MAC Director Diana Martinez and an audience Q&A. He also will sign copies of his book “Flamin’ Hot,” which was adapted into the Disney+ film directed by actress Eva Longoria.
Tickets are $10 for general admission and free for students with a COD ID.
An Evening with Elizabeth Smart
Presented on Oct. 19, 2023
Nearly 700 attendees filled Belushi Performance Hall on the College of DuPage’s Glen Ellyn campus to hear Elizabeth Smart speak about her personal story of perseverance in the face of unimaginable adversity. The author, advocate for change and national speaker discussed her grueling nine-month kidnapping and her abductors’ trial, highlighting the importance and process of recovery, and having hope in even the most difficult situation. Guests received a free copy of Smart’s book “Where There’s Hope: Healing, Moving Forward and Never Giving Up” and the opportunity to have their copy signed during the events meet and greet.
"COD Presents: An Evening With Elizabeth Smart" was sponsored by FT Cares Foundation