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90th Anniversary Observances

Look Who's 90 | Lectures, Panels, Symposia | 90th Anniversary Party | Gathering in Washington | Carrying Forward the Spirit of the Senator

Lectures, Panels, Symposia

As part of the Maxwell School’s 90th anniversary year, the academic departments and centers and institutes of the Maxwell School mounted events or other observances. Though some of these events had historical themes, most were intended to highlight the intellectual and programmatic contributions made by the individual units, adding up to the diverse whole that is the Maxwell School.

Martin Dempsey lecturing on imperialism and the military-industrial complex
Gen. Martin E. Dempsey, the chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff, spoke on “Public Service in an Age of Complex Global Security Challenges,” in an October 31 lecture sponsored by the Institute for National Security and Counterterrorism as its 90th-anniversary event (and co-sponsored by SU’s Institute for Veterans and Military Families).

MIchael CrowMany departments used the anniversary as an opportunity to host special lectures. Beyond those described at left were two of particular note. Maxwell’s Center for Technology and Information Policy hosted Michael Crow ’85 PhD (left) for a day-long series of presentations, including a public lecture on science and higher education policy. Crow is the president of Arizona State University and a scholar of science and technology policy.

And Syracuse University’s Institute for National Security and Counterterrorism, on October 31, welcomed Gen. Martin Dempsey, the chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff. Dempsey commented on some of the political and security challenges of the day, such as North Korea and the development of nuclear capabilities in Iran. But he also spoke to the event’s emphasis on public service, saying ours is an era when service matters greatly.

“Public service still matters,” Dempsey said. “When else would you want to serve? Would you want to serve when everything is kind of simple and deliberate and not much hangs in the balance? Or would you want to really serve when it makes a difference?”

Anniversary events based in the departments, centers, and institutes continue through the spring. For information, visit       

A Brazilian music ensemble performing at an art exhibition in Eggers Hall
“Carving Through Borders: Discrimination, Immigration, and Citizenship” was organized by Maxwell’s Program for the Advancement of Research on Conflict and Collaboration and SU’s College of Visual and Performing Arts. Seven-foot-long prints by various artists hung in the Strasser Commons for nearly a month, during which a September 18 reception and faculty panel focused on tensions in American society and policy in relation to Latin American immigration and citizenship. The reception also included a performance by Samba Laranja, the SU-based Brazilian music ensemble (above).

Richard RavitchTanner Lecture
In a 90th-anniversary edition of the Tanner Lecture Series on Ethics, Citizenship, and Public Responsibility on October 10, Richard Ravitch discussed the “federal-state disconnect.” Ravitch is a businessman and former lieutenant governor of New York with a long record of service on public commissions, corporations, and the like.

Faculty members on a panel, gesticulating and talking to a enthralled audienceAnthro/Geography Careers
On November 14, the Departments of Anthropology and Geography held a series of panels, featuring their alumni and exploring careers dedicated to the public good. Panelists discussed careers in urban nonprofits, international careers, and careers in environmental policy and outreach.

Teach for America volunteers on a panel reflecting on their serviceTeach for America
The Departments of Public Administration and International Affairs and undergraduate Public Affairs co-sponsored an October 10 panel on Teach for America, with alumni who later joined TFA and TFA veterans who then pursued MPAs at Maxwell. TFA alumni on the panel were (from left) Cora True-Frost ’01 JD/MPA, an SU law professor; Dana Twyman ‘01 BA (PSt), school transformation facilitator at Johns Hopkins University; Robert Magliaro ’08 BA (Econ/PSt/IR), co-founder of a high school in downtown Manhattan; Alex Payne ’12 MPA, then a legislative assistant for a U.S. Congressman; and Patricia Leon-Guerrero ’04  BA (PSt/Soc), managing director of Latino engagement and partnerships for Teach For America.

Alumni on a panel, discussing how to run nonprofits and charter schoolsManaging Nonprofits
Operating under the auspices of both the 90th anniversary and Syracuse University’s Coming Back Together minority reunion, a September 19 panel addressed the challenges of managing nonprofit organizations and charter schools. Panelists included Maxwell alumni Margo Bailey ’89 MPA, ’91 MA (Geog), ’96 PhD (PA) (left), founding board member of the Elsie Whitlow Stokes Public Charter School, Washington, D.C.; and Tamara Lumpkin ’90 MPA (center), CEO and president of TLC Consulting and former deputy executive director for the D.C. Public Charter School Board. Also taking part was Fanny Villarreal, executive director of the YWCA of Syracuse and Onondaga County.

Wendy Sherman giving a keynote addressIran Conference
The Moynihan Institute’s contribution to the anniversary observances was a major two-day symposium, Assessing Iranian Nuclear Negotiation Strategy, held October 23-24 at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in D.C. The symposium, co-organized by the Norwegian Institute of International Affairs, drew leading experts on Iran to discuss the European Union-coordinated P5+1 nuclear negotiations with that nation.  The symposium’s keynote speaker was Wendy R. Sherman, U.S. under secretary of state for political affairs.

Students learning from posters other students madeCCE and PAF Posters
During the University’s Orange Central weekend, October 9-11, various Maxwell departments mounted poster displays describing their programs. At right, visitors inspect posters prepared by the Citizenship and Civic Engagement program. Others who displayed posters were Public Affairs and Public Administration and International Affairs.

Sanjay Basu giving a lecture on public healthLourie Lecture
This year’s annual Herbert Lourie Memorial Lecture on Health Policy served also as the Center for Policy Research’s 90th anniversary observance. Dr. Sanjay Basu of the Stanford Prevention Research Center gave the October 9 lecture, addressing the economics of public health “safety nets” in the wake of an economic recession.

Family and former colleagues of Otey Scruggs. Jesse Hoffnung-Garsk talking about Cuban migration to New YorkScruggs Lecture
The Department of History’s contribution to the 90th anniversary was the inaugural Otey Scruggs Lecture, established in memory of a long-time history professor who died in early 2014. On hand for the October 6 lecture were (far left) Scruggs’s widow, Robbin Mitchell (left) and son Jeffrey (far right), shown with emeritus faculty members David Bennett and Roger Sharp. The speaker for the Scruggs Lecture was Jesse Hoffnung-Garsk (left) of the University of Michigan, who described how Cuban migration to New York City influenced late-19th century politics on the island.


This article appeared in the winter 2015 print edition of Maxwell Perspective; © 2015 Maxwell School of Syracuse University. To request a copy, e-mail