President Bill Clinton will join former U.S. Rep. Steve Israel on March 18 at 5 p.m. for a conversation about the future of democracy in America, followed by a reaction by a small panel of Cornell experts.
The program launches the new Milstein State of Democracy Addresses and will include questions from undergraduate students and an introduction by Bob Harrison ’76, chairman of the Board of Trustees at Cornell University and CEO of the Clinton Global Initiative.
Clinton and Israel will delve into the challenges faced by democracies today and what can be done to strengthen America’s democratic norms for future generations. Israel is the inaugural director of the Institute of Politics and Global Affairs, a professor of practice in government in the College of Arts and Sciences, and a former Democratic congressman from New York.
Clinton, the 42nd president of the United States, was the first Democratic president elected twice in six decades. He led the U.S. to the longest economic expansion in American history, including the creation of more than 22 million jobs. After leaving the White House, he became founder and chairman of the Clinton Foundation, an organization known for global health, community resilience, economic development and environmental protection. The Clinton Global Initiative University engages the next generation of leaders on college campuses to devise solutions and take action to address pressing challenges in their community.
Clinton served as the top United Nations envoy for the Indian Ocean tsunami recovery effort and the U.N. special envoy to Haiti. He has partnered numerous times with fellow Presidents George H.W. Bush and George W. Bush to support relief efforts for communities devastated by natural disasters.
Immediately following the conversation with Clinton, a panel reaction will include insights from:
- Rachel Beatty Riedl, director of the Mario Einaudi Center for International Studies and the John S. Knight Professor of International Studies;
- Suzanne Mettler, the John L. Senior Professor of American Institutions; and
- Douglas Kriner, the Clinton Rossiter Professor in American Institutions and faculty director of the Institute of Politics and Global Affairs
“We're excited to host President Clinton at Cornell, especially as we launch our new Campaign for the Future of Democracy,” Israel said. “It’s of vital interest that we understand the state of democracy in America and the world at such a perilous moment. We hope that everyone who attends the program understands their role in ensuring the future of democracy.”
This event is sponsored by the Howard and Abby Milstein Foundation and marks the first event in the Milstein State of Democracy Address series. The event is also supported by The Larry and Judy Tanenbaum Distinguished Speakers Fellowship of Sigma Phi.
Jessica Ames is program and communications coordinator for the Institute of Politics and Global Affairs.