By Craig McMorris, TV5 Anchor/Reporter - bio | email
MT. PLEASANT, MI (WNEM) -
Central Michigan University will host retired Gen. Colin Powell as its keynote speaker Jan. 24 during CMU's Martin Luther King Jr. celebration week.
"Colin Powell is a man of high character and great integrity who has much wisdom to offer the students, faculty and staff of CMU, as well as residents of the surrounding region," President George E. Ross said. "We are honored and humbled to host one of America's greatly admired and respected leaders."
Powell will speak at the CMU Events Center at 8 p.m. Tickets are free and will be available from the CMU box office in mid-November. He will meet with a group of students before the keynote presentation to discuss the attributes of leadership. Additional events are likely to be announced at a later date.
Powell was in the news recently when he openly endorsed President Barack Obama for re-election.
"Gen. Powell's speech, Taking Charge, is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for students, the campus and the community to gain leadership counsel from one of the nation's most highly decorated generals," said Pamela Gates, dean of the College of Humanities and Social and Behavioral Sciences.
"In CMU's 120th year, as one of the top universities in this state, we're delighted to bring a renowned world leader to our campus," Gates said. "Colin Powell will challenge all of us to be great leaders - to go beyond what we imagine our own potential to be."
The Philip A. Hart and William G. Milliken Endowed Speaker Series for Integrity in Politics will fund the majority of Gen. Powell's $125,000 speaking cost. The speaker series is housed within CHSBS. Additional sponsors include the Office for Institutional Diversity, Multicultural Academic Students Services, Speaker Series and Program Board.
The university also is securing external sponsors for the event. Powell served as the 65th United States Secretary of State under President George W. Bush from 2001 to 2005. He is a retired four-star general in the United States Army. During his military career, he also served as National Security Advisor, Commander of the U.S. Army Forces Command and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
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