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Center for Ethical Leadership

Student Leadership Conference

Registration for the 2006 Conference is now closed.

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Confirmed Speakers

General Richard Myers

General Richard Myers, USAF, Retired

Fifteenth Chairman U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff

In his term as the fifteenth Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Myers led the United States military through four years of tumultuous change on the international and domestic stage. From our engagement in Iraq and Afghanistan to the military's heroic role following Hurricane Katrina, Myers was the principal military advisor to the President, the Defense Secretary, and the National Security Council in his role as Joint Chiefs Chairman. In his presentation, Myers offers analysis on military, security, and preparedness matters at home and abroad.

A native of Kansas, Myers is a 1965 graduate of Kansas State University and received a Masters Degree in Business Administration from Auburn University. Entering the Air Force following his graduation from Kansas State, Myers military education included the Air Command and Staff College at Maxwell Air Force Base, Alabama; the U.S. Army War College at Carlisle Barracks, Pennsylvania; and the Program for Senior Executives in National and International Security at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University.

Myers served the U.S. Air Force throughout the world in many capacities. He was a fighter pilot during the Vietnam War and his career includes operational command and leadership positions in a variety of Air Force and Joint assignments. General Myers is a command pilot with more than 4,100 flying hours. In November 2005, President Bush awarded General Myers the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation's highest civilian honor.

Jean Bethke Elshtain

Jean Bethke Elshtain

Laura Spelman Rockefeller Professor of Social and Political Ethics
University of Chicago

Jean Bethke Elshtain is a political philosopher whose task has been to show the connections between our political and our ethical convictions. She received her Ph.D. in politics from Brandeis University in 1973 and then joined the faculty of the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. In 1988, she became the first woman to hold an endowed professorship in the history of Vanderbilt University. She was appointed to her current position at the University of Chicago in 1995 and has been a visiting professor at Oberlin College, Yale University, and Harvard University. Professor Elshtain was elected a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 1996. Her books include Just War Against Terror: The Burden of American Power in a Violent World, Public Man, Private Woman: Women in Social and Political Thought, Meditations on Modern Political Thought, and Democracy on Trial. She has been a Fellow at the Institute for Advanced Study at Princeton, a Scholar in Residence for the Rockefeller Foundation Bellagio Conference and Study Center in Como, Italy, and a Guggenheim Fellow. She is the recipient of the Ellen Gregg Ingalls Award for excellence in classroom teaching--the highest award for undergraduate teaching at Vanderbilt. She served as a member of the Board of Trustees of the Institute for Advanced Study at Princeton and is on the Board of Trustees of the National Humanities Center in Research Triangle Park in North Carolina. She was recently appointed to the Board of the Illinois Humanities Council.

Dominique Dawes

Dominique Dawes

Dominique got started in gymnastics at the age of 6. She burst into the international spotlight in the 1992 Olympics in Barcelona, Spain. Dominique was the first African American gymnast to ever qualify and compete in an Olympic Games. At these Games she and her teammates captured a bronze medal. Since then Dominique has won more National Championship medals than any other athlete, male or female, as well as four World Championship medals. One of Dominique's greatest accomplishments came when she swept all four events and won the All Around title at the 1994 National Championships.

At the 1996 Olympic Games Dominique and the United States Gymnastics Team stole the hearts of Americans with their team gold medal. At those same Games, "Awesome Dawesome" (as she is known by her coach and teammates) became the first African-American to win an individual gymnastics medal with her bronze on the floor. For 6 years Dominique was the National spokesperson for the Girl Power campaign run by the Clinton administration. This campaign was designed to motivate and educate young girls about their potential in society. Dominique has also appeared on Broadway in the hit musical Grease, where she played the part of Patty Simcox.

As a result of her determination and ability, Dominique has received several awards including the 1995 Henry P. Iba Citizen Award, presented annually to two outstanding athletes who have demonstrated good citizenship, the winner of the 1997 Essence Award, one of four nominees for the 1997/1998 Nickelodeon Kid Choice award, and more recently the recipient of the 2004 AAUW "Women of Distinction" award.

Dominique is a graduate of the University of Maryland, College Park.

Howard Prince

Howard Prince

Dr. Howard Prince is the Loyd Hackler Endowed Chairholder in Ethical Leadership and the Director of the Center for Ethical Leadership in the LBJ School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas at Austin.

Dr. Prince is a 1962 honor graduate of West Point who also holds a Master of Arts degree in International Relations from American University and a Ph.D in psychology from UT Austin. Additionally, he is an Olmstead Scholar who studied at the University of Bonn in Germany, a Distinguished Fellow of the APA, and a graduate of the US Army's War College.

At three very different institutions of American higher education, the United States Military Academy, the University of Richmond, and the University of Texas at Austin, Howard Prince has been the focal leader in developing groundbreaking programs of leadership education and leadership development. At West Point, Howard was the founding chair of the Department of Behavioral Sciences and Leadership, now a premier department at West Point. At The University of Richmond, Howard was the founding Dean of the Jepson School of Leadership Studies, the world's first undergraduate degree granting program in leadership. And at UT Austin, Howard Prince, as director of the CEL is playing a central role in UT's efforts to develop ethical leaders for Texas and beyond.

After over 28 years of service in the United States Army, Howard Prince was advanced to the grade of Brigadier General and presented the Distinguished Service Medal. His other military awards and decorations include the Silver Star, the Distinguished Flying Cross, two Bronze Stars for valor, the Bronze Star for service, two awards of the Purple Heart for Combat wounds sustained in the Viet Nam War, the Ranger Tab, Senior Parachutist's Badge, Expert Infantryman's Badge, and the Combat Infantryman's Badge.

More recently, in 2006 Howard Prince was named a Distinguished Graduate of the United States Military Academy at West Point, the highest honor given to a graduate of the United States Military Academy. In the comprehensive and laudatory narrative explaining Howard Prince's life work in developing ethical leaders for the nation, the nominating committee gave Howard Prince a high compliment by referring to him as a national treasure.

Dr. Prince will present a plenary session at the 2006 Student Leadership Conference entitled "Ethical Leadership."

Liz Murray

Liz Murray

From homeless to Harvard . . . it is an unlikely turn of events. Liz Murray's life is a triumph over adversity and a stunning example of the importance of dreaming big. Liz's life as the child of cocaine-addicted parents in the Bronx was bitterly grim. There was never food in the house, everything was filthy, drugs were everywhere and the welfare checks were spent before they arrived.

By age 15, Liz's mom had died and she was homeless living on the streets, riding the subway all night, and eating from dumpsters. Amidst this pain, Liz always imagined her life could be much better than it was. "I started to grasp the value of the lessons learned while living on the streets. I knew, after overcoming those daily obstacles, that next to nothing could hold me down." Determined to take charge of her life, Liz finished high school in just two years while camping out in New York City parks and subway stations. She went on to earn a scholarship from The New York Times and entered Harvard in 2000. In order to be closer to her ill father, Liz has chosen to attend Columbia University starting in the fall of 2003.

Liz's story is exhilarating and her delivery innocently honest, as she takes audiences on a very personal journey where she achieves the improbable. Her story sounds like a Hollywood movie and it practically is. Lifetime Television produced a movie about Liz's life story entitled From Homeless to Harvard, which premiered in April 2003. She is currently writing her memoirs for Hyperion due out in 2005. She was a recent recipient of Oprah Winfrey's first ever Chutzpah Award.


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