Regional News
5:09 pm
Fri August 31, 2012

Huntsman, Richardson to Headline NKU Political Debate Sept. 18

HIGHLAND HEIGHTS, Ky. –Dust is flying, insults are being lobbed across the proverbial aisle and the siege of television commercials has begun. Ahh, election season in America. As the nation barrels toward what promises to be one of the most contentious, interesting and entertaining presidential elections in modern history, Northern Kentucky University will welcome two men who have been there and done that.

The NKU Alumni Association and Fidelity Investments Alumni Lecture, titled “Governing in America: Battle for the Presidency,” will feature Jon Huntsman and Bill Richardson, both of whom know firsthand what it is like to run for president and what implications the upcoming election will have for America. The event will take place on Sept. 18 at 6:30 p.m. in the James C. and Rachel M. Votruba Student Union ballroom.

From 2004-09 Huntsman was governor of one of the most conservative states in the country, Utah. He has been to every Republican National Convention since he was a delegate for Ronald Regan in 1984, though he has announced he is skipping this year’s event. Huntsman served as a White House staff assistant for Reagan and later became deputy assistant secretary of commerce under George H.W. Bush. When he was named the U.S. ambassador to Singapore in 1992, he was the youngest head of a U.S. diplomatic mission in 100 years.

Two-term New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson will lead the energy forum at September’s DNC Convention and is, despite perhaps some residual hard feelings from the Clintons for endorsing President Obama in the Democratic primary in 2008, still a spokesperson for the party in the media and at political functions. Before becoming governor, Richardson served as a U.S. congressman for 15 years. He’s also served as the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations and secretary of the U.S. Department of Energy.

“Having each made an unsuccessful presidential bid, these two gentlemen bring unique insights and perspectives to the 2012 presidential election,” said NKU President Geoffrey Mearns. “They are energetic and dynamic speakers with distinguished political careers. And on September 18, they will take on some of the most critical issues facing the nation as we approach the presidential election.”

The presenting sponsor for the NKU Alumni Association and Fidelity Investments Alumni Lecture Series is The Kentucky Enquirer/NKY.com.The event is co-sponsored by 55KRC, 89.7 WNKU, AT&T, WCPO & The E.W. Scripps Company, Liberty Mutual, the NKU Scripps Howard Center for Civic Engagement, the NKU Bookstore, the NKU Division of Student Affairs, Hillshire Brands and the NKU Foundation.

The lecture is open to the public. Tickets can be purchased in advance at http://alumni.nku.eduor at the door. Ticket prices are $40 for the general public, $35 for NKU alumni/faculty/staff and $10 for students. A 10 percent discount using promo code ALS2012 is offered on tickets purchased before Aug. 31. Tickets for a pre-event reception may be purchased for $100, which includes a lecture ticket. The pre-event reception begins at 5 p.m. in the Griffin Hall George and Ellen Rieveschl Digitorium and the Fidelity Investments Alumni Lecture begins at 6:30 p.m. in the Votruba Student Union Ballroom.

“There are so many pertinent questions to be asked this election,” said John Lucas, chair of the NKU Alumni Lecture Series Committee. “Is the GOP lost in the woods or firmly on the path to success? What happened to hope and change: are they alive and well or was it all a dream to begin with? Can’t we all just get along? So many questions, so little time. This is your opportunity to ask Jon Huntsman and Bill Richardson your own questions, in person. Don’t miss it.”

Seating for the event is limited. To purchase tickets visit http://alumni.nku.eduor call (859) 572-5486.

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PRESS CONFERENCE: Both speakers will be available to the media from 4:15-4:30 p.m. on Sept. 18. Additional details about the press conference will be shared when available.

For further information contact Brent Donaldson at (859) 572-5586 or donaldsonb@nku.edu.