David Baldacci signing books at a table

Monroe Scholars Book Award

In 2020, the Monroe Scholars Book and Author Luncheon celebrates its 10-year anniverary. The program recognizes outstanding high school juniors who are considered exceptionally talented scholars and leaders.

Make plans to attend as we welcome home alumnus and author David Baldacci (B.A.83/H&S; H.L.D.01) as the keynote speaker. He has published 38 novels for adults and seven novels for younger readers, all of which have been national and international bestsellers, and several have been adapted for film and TV.

Cost is $80 per ticket. Tickets go on sale March 1.

About the program

In 2009, VCU Alumni board member Robert A. Almond (B.S.’74/B; M.Ed.’85/E) had an idea to recognize outstanding high school students in the Richmond, Virginia, area while simultaneously promoting Virginia Commonwealth University as a university of choice.

The concept was simple: Award books and recognition certificates to top high school juniors as identified by their faculty and peers, while engaging them in their senior year with campus visits. If the students applied to VCU and enrolled, they would receive a scholarship valued up to $2,000 from VCU Alumni. Through Almond’s gift, and the efforts of a dedicated group of alumni, the Monroe Scholars Book Award program was created.

What began in the city of Richmond now involves all high schools in Central Virginia and an annual luncheon, featuring award-winning and bestselling authors, to raise funds and awareness. 

Featured authors

2011: David Baldacci (B.A.83/H&S; H.L.D.01)
2012: Phyllis Theroux
2013: William Bass, Ph.D.
2014: Rita Mae Brown
2015: Nancy Wright Beasley
2016: Sharyn McCrumb
2017: Howard Owen (M.A.81/H&S)
2018: Jill McCorkle
2019: Lee Smith
2020: David Baldacci