Former Defense Secretary James Schlesinger to Visit CU-Boulder April 15

Published: April 8, 2008


Former Defense Secretary James Schlesinger to Visit CU-Boulder April 15

Former Secretary of Defense James Schlesinger will meet with faculty and students in a series of meetings including a roundtable discussion at the University of Colorado at Boulder on Tuesday, April 15.

All of the activities are part of the College of Arts and Sciences' "Dialogue on Defense" program.

The roundtable will be from 9 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. in the Wittemyer Courtroom of the Wolf Law Building. Although the roundtable is not open to the public due to space limitations, media are invited to attend. Photographers are welcome to shoot or videotape during the roundtable.

Schlesinger served as secretary of defense in the Nixon and Ford administrations from July 2, 1973 to Nov. 19, 1975. His tenure saw changes in U.S. nuclear strategy and the transition to an all-volunteer force as well as the increased presence of women in the military. However, he is most remembered for announcing the final evacuation, by helicopter, of the last remaining U.S. personnel from Saigon, South Vietnam, on April 29, 1975.

Schlesinger is coming to CU-Boulder as part of a series called "Dialogue on Defense: Briefings by the Secretary of Defense," conducted by CU-Boulder's history and political science departments in conjunction with the Hoover Institution at Stanford University. The series is led by history and international affairs Professor Thomas Zeiler and political science lecturer Michael Kanner.

Former Secretary of Defense William Perry visited CU-Boulder last fall as part of the program and other secretaries have been invited to visit the campus in the future.

As part of the series, Kanner is teaching an undergraduate international affairs class titled "Special Topic: The Secretary of Defense." The class is examining the influence of individual secretaries, conducting original research and assisting with scholarly research.

Schlesinger will meet with the class to discuss its research while he is on campus. The goals of the class are to understand the politics and history of the office, its effect on American security policies and the effect of these policies on society as a whole.

Background information on Schlesinger can be found on the "Dialogue on Defense: Briefings by the Secretary of Defense" Web site at

The Wolf Law Building is located off Kittredge Loop Drive and can be accessed along Regent Drive near the Fiske Planetarium. Parking is available on the south side of the building.

For more information on the roundtable please contact Peter Caughey at 303-492-4007 or Jeannine Malmsbury at 303-492-3115 in the CU-Boulder Office of News Services.