College of Veterinary Medicine > Research > Symposium > Keynote

Mr. Bill Landry

Bill Landry

Host and co-producer of the Heartland Series, WBIR Channel 10, Knoxville

"Herbs, Potions, Magic Cures and Remedies of the Southern Appalachians"

Mr. Landry will use lecture and video to share a few of the 1,900 "Heartland Series" episodes that feature "Herb Doctors," the use of plants and herbs in cures, Native American use of potions, ghosts and witches, and myths, as well as other actual unexplained phenomenon, medical wise and otherwise.

Bill Landry has been the host, narrator, and co-producer ofThe Heartland Series since it was conceived in 1984 to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.  This year marks the 25th year of the Heartland Series.   Since its beginning, over 1,900 short features have been produced, including 150 half-hour episodes that appear Saturday night, 7:30 pm on WBIR-TV, Channel 10, an NBC affiliate in Knoxville.

The Heartland Series has won numerous national and international awards, including 5 Emmy Awards, 3 Iris Awards, and numerous media and history awards.  In 1999 and again in 2000 Bill was awarded Emmy Awards for directing particular episodes.  It is general agreed that in East Tennessee The Heartland Series isthe most highly regarded local television program in the region’s history.

WBIR has announced that The Heartland Series will stop producing new shows in September of this year.  As many changes occur and plans evolve, Bill, meanwhile, is working on a number of projects that continue to focus on our rich heritage, our spectacular land, and our unique people.  There are still many stories to tell and much to be learned about the Appalachian region.

Bill is a graduate of Trinity University, the Dallas Theater Center, with a Master of fine Arts degree, and a BA in literature from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga.   He has also received an Honorary Doctorate in Humanities from Lincoln Memorial University as well as the “Education in Appalachian Award” from Carson Newman College.

For over 30 years Bill Landry has also written, produced, and performed  his one man play, Einstein, the Man, which has been presented over 1,000 times and in 38 states and Canada.  In 2008, in association with The Great Smoky Mountain National Park, Bill premiered his production of William Bartram-An Unlikely Explorer.  This live, multi-media presentation tells the tale of the little known 18th explorer, adventurer, and naturalist, William Bartram.  Ironically, William Bartram was the subject of the pilot and first episode of The Heartland Series.  After 25 years Bill has returned to a subject that has always intrigued him.