James A. Baker, III, America’s 61st Secretary of State and 67th Secretary of the Treasury, will deliver a Green Lecture at 2 p.m. on September 22 in Champ Auditorium on the Westminster College campus.
Baker’s keynote address will be a centerpiece of the 5th annual Symposium on Democracy, two days of campus wide lectures, presentations and panel discussions on the topic of “Global Conflicts—It’s Not Just About War.”
The topic of Baker’s speech will be “The Case for Pragmatic Idealism.”
“To have a public servant of Mr. Baker’s stature coming to campus to deliver a Green Lecture is truly a privilege,” says Westminster President Dr. George B. Forsythe. “The depth of world policy experience he has to share with our community is astounding and I look forward to hearing the wisdom he has to impart in his lecture.”
Baker has served in senior government positions under three U.S. Presidents. His public service career began as Under Secretary of Commerce to President Gerald Ford. Under President Ronald Reagan, he was Secretary of the Treasury and White House Chief of Staff. Under President George H.W. Bush, Baker was Secretary of State, White House Chief of Staff and Counselor to President Bush.
In addition, Baker led presidential campaigns for Presidents Ford, Reagan and Bush during five consecutive presidential elections from 1976 to 1992.
He has received numerous prestigious national honors such as the Presidential Medal of Freedom (1991) and has written two books, The Politics of Democracy (1995) and Work Hard, Study…and Keep Out of Politics! Adventures and Lessons from an Unexpected Public Life (2006).
Currently, Baker is Senior Partner at the Houston-based law firm Baker Botts and Honorary Chair of the James A. Baker III Institute for Public Policy at Rice University.
He holds a law degree from the University of Texas School of Law and is a native Houstonian.
Students, faculty and staff wanting to attend the lecture will be issued tickets for the event. A limited number of tickets will be available for Westminster alumni, friends and members of the general public. Details of the ticketing process will be released on September 8.
Established in 1936 as a memorial to John Findley Green, a St. Louis attorney and Westminster graduate (1884), The John Findley Green Foundation Lecture is given by “a person of international reputation” to promote understanding of economic and social problems of international concern.
Baker will join a long list of luminaries that have delivered Green Lectures at Westminster, including Sir Winston Churchill and his famous “Iron Curtain” speech, President Harry Truman, Vice President George H.W. Bush, Vice President Hubert Humphrey, financier J.C. Penney, Soviet Premier Mikhail Gorbachev and former British Prime Ministers Edward Heath and Margaret Thatcher.Click here and learn more about Westminster's Symposium on Democracy.