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Last modified: Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Richard Lugar to present O'Meara International Lecture at IU Bloomington

Jan. 29, 2013

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Former U.S. Sen. Richard Lugar, the longest-serving senator in Indiana's history and a faculty member in Indiana University's School of Global and International Studies, will present the Patrick O'Meara International Lecture on Feb. 18 at IU Bloomington.

Lugar, who last week was given the faculty title of distinguished scholar and professor of practice in the new School of Global and International Studies, will speak at 4 p.m. in Whittenberger Auditorium of the Indiana Memorial Union, 900 E. Seventh St. The lecture is free and open to the public.

The O'Meara International Lecture is sponsored by the Office of the Vice President for International Affairs. It honors IU's first vice president for international affairs and celebrates his legacy of enriching the university's international engagement.

IU President Michael A. McRobbie said it is appropriate that Lugar will be part of a lecture series that honors someone who has been IU's ambassador to the world for many decades.

"Just as Sen. Lugar's appointment to the School of Global and International Studies will provide our students and faculty with extraordinary opportunities to interact with and to learn from one of America's foremost experts on international relations, so too will his O'Meara lecture afford an invaluable educational opportunity for the entire Bloomington community," McRobbie said. "Patrick O'Meara helped to establish a culture of internationalism at Indiana University over several decades, and it is fitting that one of Indiana's giants of international diplomacy speak at this important event."

O'Meara, who today chairs the Center for International Education and Development Assistance, since the 1960s has been at IU, where he earned his doctorate, served as dean and then served as vice president for international affairs at IU for two decades. David Zaret succeeded him as IU vice president for international affairs in 2011.

Lugar is a fifth-generation Hoosier who has been a gifted local and state leader and a respected national and international statesman, exercising leadership on critical issues such as food security, nuclear non-proliferation, energy independence and free trade. He holds 46 honorary degrees from colleges and universities in 15 states and the District of Columbia, and was the fourth person to be named Outstanding Legislator by the American Political Science Association.

Lugar graduated first in his class at both Shortridge High School in Indianapolis and Denison University in Granville, Ohio. He attended Pembroke College at Oxford University as a Rhodes Scholar, studying politics, philosophy and economics. Lugar volunteered for the U.S. Navy in 1957, ultimately serving as an intelligence briefer for Adm. Arleigh Burke, Chief of Naval Operations.

Lugar manages his family's 604-acre Marion County corn, soybean and tree farm. Before entering public life, he helped manage the family's food machinery manufacturing business in Indianapolis with his brother Tom.

As the two-term mayor of Indianapolis (1968-75), he envisioned the unification of the city and surrounding Marion County into one government. Unigov, as Lugar's plan was called, set the city on a path of uninterrupted economic growth. He served three terms on the U.S. Advisory Commission on Intergovernmental Relations, including two terms as the vice chair of the commission, and served as president of the National League of Cities.

Lugar has been a leader in reducing the threat of nuclear, chemical and biological weapons. In 1991, he forged a bipartisan partnership with then-Senate Armed Services Chairman Sam Nunn, D-Ga., to destroy these weapons of mass destruction in the former Soviet Union. To date, the Nunn-Lugar program has deactivated more than 7,500 nuclear warheads that were once aimed at the United States.

As chairman of the Agriculture Committee, Lugar built bipartisan support for 1996 federal farm program reforms, ending 1930s-era federal production controls. He has promoted broader risk management options for farmers, research advancements, increased export opportunities and higher net farm income. Lugar initiated a biofuels research program to help decrease U.S. dependency on foreign oil. He also led initiatives to streamline the U.S. Department of Agriculture, reform the food stamp program and preserve the federal school lunch program.

Earlier this month, Lugar donated his senatorial papers to IU's Modern Political Papers collection, located at the Herman B Wells Library on the Bloomington campus. He will also co-chair the new IU International Advisory Committee with former U.S. Rep. Lee Hamilton, whose congressional papers are also housed at the Modern Political Papers collection.

For more information about the lecture, contact the IU Office of the Vice President for International Affairs at or 812-855-5021.