About The Forum

What is The Richmond Forum?

The Richmond Forum is a subscription series, producing five programs each year. The biggest and most influential names in the world have taken the stage at The Forum, creating lifetime memories for our subscribers: past U.S. presidents, sitting heads of state, leaders from the sciences, arts, business, and more.

The Richmond Forum is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) educational organization.

Our Mission

To present powerful voices so Richmond can learn. To empower local voices so Richmond can lead.

Our Vision

By elevating public discourse throughout the Richmond region, we can make our community a better place for all of its residents and a model for the nation.

“The Richmond Forum elevates the stature of the Richmond community to a world-class stage of ideas, an epicenter of civil discussion, political thought, scientific advancement, and outstanding artistry.”

– Forum subscriber

Influential Names, Inspiring Evenings

Over 240 distinguished individuals have participated in The Forum since its inception in 1987. Past alumni include names like Obama, Bush, Clinton, Blair, Thatcher, Gorbachev, Kissinger, Rice, Bernanke, Tutu, Netanyahu, Bhutto, Cronkite, Brokaw, Spielberg, Redford, Winfrey, Goodall, Buchwald, Asimov, and many more.

Beyond the part The Forum plays in bringing these speakers to Richmond, what makes each program so inspiring is the dedicated and passionate audience that attends. Richmond has a long history of supporting public speaker series, hosting lively discussions, staging marches and protests, and directly engaging with the difficult issues of the time. Our speakers are impressed the first moment they step on stage at the Altria Theater. “And all of these seats are going to be full tonight?” former Executive Director Bill Chapman recalls in the foreword to The Forum’s 30th anniversary book “The Forum Files.” Yes, they are.

It’s a testament to Richmond that we are able to sustain such a beloved and critical institution for our community. It’s because of Richmond that we are able to say that The Forum is the largest nonprofit lecture series in America.

See our full list of Richmond Forum speaker alumni.

Big Names, Big Ideas

The Forum has wowed audiences for nearly four decades, but the tradition of a large and vibrant lecture series has been a unique part of Richmond’s culture and identity since the 19th century — and has inspired other cities to follow suit.

110 South 15th Street
Suite B
Richmond, VA 23219

Office: (804) 330-3993
Office Hours: 9am – 5pm
Program Day: 10am – noon

Presenting powerful voices so Richmond can learn. Empowering local voices so Richmond can lead.

The Richmond Forum and its partners are proud to support the Richmond Forum Speech & Debate Initiative, a community initiative to bring speech & debate programs to all of our region’s public schools.

The Richmond Forum is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) educational organization.

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