Category Archives: Uncategorized

Climate Change as a Civil and Human Rights Issue

Event Date: April 16

Reception 5:30 p.m.; Dinner 6:15 p.m.; Program 7:30 p.m.

Program: Brookens Auditorium, University of Illinois at Springfield

Dinner: PAC Restaurant

All programs are free and open to the public. Dinners require a reservation.

As the Director of the NAACP’s Environmental and Climate Justice Program, Jacqueline Patterson works with community leaders in the United States and around the world to address climate change as a human and civil rights issue. Research demonstrates that climate change does not and will not affect all communities equally. People of color, low-income communities, and women are more vulnerable to the negative effects of climate change.

Patterson will discuss why climate change is an important human and civil rights issue, and she will explain how the NAACP is working to empower community leaders to address the causes of climate change, rectify its impacts, and advance a global society that fosters sustainable, cooperative, regenerative communities.

Jacqueline Patterson is the Director of the NAACP Environmental and Climate Justice Program. Since 2007 Patterson has served as coordinator and co- founder of Women of Color United. She has also worked as a researcher, program manager, coordinator, advocate and activist working on women‘s rights, violence against women, HIV&AIDS, racial justice, economic justice, and environmental and climate justice.

Patterson holds a master’s degree in social work from the University of Maryland and a master’s degree in public health from Johns Hopkins University. She currently serves on the International Committee of the US Social Forum, the Steering Committee for Interfaith Moral Action on Climate, Advisory Board for Center for Earth Ethics as well as on the Boards of Directors for the Institute of the Black World, Center for Story Based Strategy and the US Cli- mate Action Network. She also served as a U.S. Peace Corps Volunteer in Jamaica, West Indies.

Venezuela Collapses

Event Date: March 6

Reception 5:30 p.m.; Dinner 6:15 p.m.; Program 7:30 p.m.

UIS Student Center, University of Illinois at Springfield

All programs are free and open to the public

Professor Michael Coppedge from Notre Dame University will present “Venezuela Collapses.”  Venezuela used to be the richest country in South America and a showcase of stable democracy. Now it is an unstable dictatorship with a collapsing economy. What happened? What’s next?

Michael Coppedge is Professor of Political Science at the University of Notre Dame and a Faculty Fellow of the Kellogg Institute for International Studies, where he co-leads the Democratization Theory Research Cluster.

He is also one of the principal investigators of the Varieties of Democracy project, which has produced new measures of hun- dreds of aspects of democracy and governance for nearly all countries since 1900.

He is the author of Democratization and Research Methods (Cam-
bridge University Press, 2012); Strong Parties and Lame Ducks: Presidential Partyarchy and Factionalism in Venezuela (Stanford University Press, 1994); and dozens of articles and chapters on democratization, research methods, and Latin American political parties and elections. His current research projects cover the nature, causes, and consequences of democracy, especially democracy measurement and the diffusion of democracy.

The US Healthcare System(s): Time for International Comparative Policy Analysis

Event Date: Thursday, February 1

UIS Student Center, University of Illinois at Springfield

Reception 5:30 p.m.; Dinner 6:15 p.m.; Program 7:30 p.m.

All programs are free and open to the public

Dr. Jerry Kruse has been appointed Dean and Provost of the Southern Illinois University School of Medicine, effective January 1, 2016. He has served in the dual role of Executive Associate Dean of the SIU School of Medicine and CEO of SIU HealthCare, the 300 physician faculty practice plan, since January 2013. He will continue in his position as CEO of SIU HealthCare. Dr. Kruse is Professor of Family & Community Medicine (with tenure) and Professor of Med- ical Education at the SIU SOM, and has been on faculty at SIU for 31 years.

He has served many roles at SIU, including: Chair of the De-
partment of Family & Community Medicine (1996-2013), Residency
Program Director for the SIU-Quincy Family Medicine Program
(1991-2003), Director of Clinical Operations of the Quincy Family
Medicine Center (1984-2003), Complex Office Laboratory Director of
the Quincy Family Medicine Center and Quincy Center for Family Medicine FQHC (1984-present), Chair of the SIU SOM Educational Policy Council (the SIU SOM cur- riculum committee 2000-2011) , and two terms on the Tenure and Promotions Committee.

Dr. Kruse is a native of Salisbury, Missouri, and completed all of his training at the University of Missouri- Columbia – BA Chemistry 1975, MD 1979, Residency in Family & Community Medicine 1982, Robert Wood Johnson Fellowship in Academic Family Medicine 1984, MSPH 1984. He has been an active member of the Society of Teachers of Family Medicine (President 2012-2013, chair of the Academic Family Medicine Advocacy Committee), the Association of Departments of Family Medicine (long time chair of the Legislative Affairs Committee), the Association of Family Practice Res- idency Directors, and the North American Primary Care Research Group. He is currently a member of the Board of Directors for both the American Board of Family Medicine and for Family Medicine for America’s Health. From 2007-2011, he served on the Council on Graduate Medical Education, the leading healthcare workforce policy body that advised HHS Secretaries Leavitt and Sebelius and the health care legislation authorizing commit- tees of Congress.

Dr. Kruse was a frequent member of a team that provided public health and acute medical care in Honduras. Dr. Kruse is a student of the interactions of biology and soci- ety. He has pioneered cooperative relationships between osteopathic and allopathic insti- tutions and interprofessional systems of care. Dr. Kruse has a special interest in cross-cultural and population health to inform effective policies and improve health care systems.

He and his wife, Lois, have three children, Emily, a poet at Oregon State University-Cascades, Julie, an elementary and preschool teacher in Columbia, South Carolina, and Anna, a biostatitician and PhD candidate in clinical epidemiology-maternal and child health at the University of North Carolina. Among other things, Dr. Kruse enjoys golf, wine, trumpet and humorous poetry.

Trump and the World Economy

Monday, December 4, 2017

Reception 5:30 p.m.; Dinner 6:15 p.m.; Program 7:30 p.m.
Hoogland Center for the Arts, Club Room
420 South Sixth Street, Springfield, Illinois

The program is open to the public and is free. 

Dr. Steven Livingston, Professor of Political Science

Donald Trump appears to be inaugurating the biggest change in America’s foreign trade policy since the 1930s. Dr. Livingston will discuss why and how he is trying to do this.  Will he succeed?  And if he does, what will result – for the U.S., and for the world?

Dr. Steven Livingston is the Associate Director of the Business and Economic Research Center and a professor of Political Science at Middle Tennessee State University. He edits Global Commerce, a quarterly trade newsletter, which has twice been the recipient of the AUBER Award for Excellence in Publications. The author of two books and numerous papers and articles, his research focuses upon America’s international economic policies and he closely tracks state and regional-level international trade activity.

Dr. Livingston has been awarded the Pew Charitable Trust Faculty Fellowship in International Affairs, and he has been an Academic Fellow of the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies. He is a Professeur Invité at the Université de Caen, where he has taught on the politics of the international economy each year since 2004. He has received grants related to his trade research from the Energy Foundation, the National Science Foundation, the Tennessee Valley Authority, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture, among others. Dr. Livingston received his Ph.D. in Government from Harvard University, where he was an Associate of the Harvard Center for International Affairs.


Mexican Democracy in the Age of Uncertainty

World Affairs Council of Central Illinois Presentation/Dinner

Speaker: Duncan Wood

Program: Thursday, November 9, 2017

7:30 pm, Conference Room C\D, Public Affairs Center, University of Illinois at Springfield
Program is free and open to the public.

Reception 5:30/Dinner 6:15 pm in Conference Room C\D

Duncan Wood, Director of the Wilson Center’s Mexico Institute since January 2013, is a “North American citizen,” lecturing and publishing widely in the United States, Mexico and Canada on intracontinental issues and relations, politics, security and trade with a primary focus on U.S.-Mexican ties.

A widely-quoted authority on energy policy, international banking regulation and corruption, he works closely with the World Economic Forum and leverages decades of experience at Mexico’s leading universities and newspapers.

Before coming to the Wilson Center, Dr. Wood served as professor and director of International Relations Program at Instituto Tecnologico Autonomo de Mexico (ITAM) in Mexico City for 17 years. Prior to ITAM, Dr. Wood led the Renewable Energy Initiative at the Wilson Center’s Mexico Institute and is a two level member of the Mexican National Research System.

He has been editorial advisor to both Reforma and El Universal newspapers, and member of editorial board of Foreign Affairs Latinoamerica. In 2007, he was a non-resident Fulbright Fellow and between 2007 and 2009, he was technical secretary of Red Mexicana de Energia, experts in energy policy in Mexico.

He has been a Senior Associate with the Simon Chair at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) in Washington, D.C. His research focuses on Mexican and Latin American energy policy, including renewable energy.

Dr. Wood studied in the UK and in Canada, receiving his PhD in Political Studies from Queen’s University, Canada in 1996. He is a recipient of Canadian Governor General’s Visit Award for contributions to Mexico-Canada relationship.

The Wilson Center, chartered by Congress as the living memorial to President Woodrow Wilson, is the nation’s key non partisan policy forum. In tackling global issues through independent research and open dialogue, the Center informs actionable ideas for Congress, the administration and the broader policy community.

The Problem With North Korea

World Affairs Council of Central Illinois Presentation/Lunch
Speaker: Dr. Roy Wehrle

Due to a medical emergency, Dr. Victor Cha will not be able to present on October 24. However, Dr. Roy Wehrle has graciously agreed to present on North Korea and Niger. 

This presentation by Dr. Wehrle will take place at the Trutter Center on the Campus of Lincoln Land Community College (LLCC-Campus Map).

Lunch at the Trutter Center will begin at 12:15 p.m. If you registered for the dinner on October 4, you do not need to register again if you wish to have lunch. If you registered for the dinner on October 4 and do not wish to have lunch, please contact Michael Plog to have your check returned or destroyed. (, 793-2509) If you did not register for the dinner on October 4, but you would like to register for the lunch on October 24, please complete the meal registration form at Dinner Order Form . Reservations are required for dinner and must be prepaid and on or before October 17.For the possibility of late reservations, contact Michael Plog to determine whether seating is available.




Cuba and the United States: Neither Friend or Foe

World Affairs Council of Central Illinois Presentation/Dinner
Speaker: Frank Argote-Freyre

Program: Tuesday, September 12, 7:30 pm, Conference Room C\D, University of Illinois at Springfield
Program is free and open to the public.

Reception 5:30/Dinner 6:15 pm in Conference Room C\D

Frank’s recommended reading and viewing for this event. Websites for the Audience — 0912 2017

We are pleased that Dr. Frank Argote-Freyre, noted author, activist, journalist, and Professor is returning for yet another insightful presentation.  In 2015, Dr. Argote-Freyre addressed the topic “U.S. -Cuba Relations: Will this Thaw Continue?” 
On September 12 his topic will be “Cuba and the United States: Neither Friend nor Foe” in which he reviews the latest zigs and zags in the complex relationship between U.S. and Cuba. A central topic of discussion will be the impact of President Trump on the delicate state of affairs between Cuba and the United States.
Argote-Freyre received his Ph.D in Latin American History with a minor in World History from Rutgers University in 2004. From 1995 to 2005, he served as Adjunct Professor at Rutgers University, teaching courses on modern and colonial Latin American History, including courses on Cuba, the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico and the Spanish Caribbean.
Since September 2005, he serves as Assistant Professor at Kean University, teaching a wide range of Latin American history and Latino Studies courses and is in the process of reinvigorating the Latin American history program. He recently taught courses on History of Cuba, History of the Caribbean, History of Brazil, History of Mexico, Latinos in the United States, Modern Latin America and Colonial Latin America. He is currently developing courses on Mexican history, race in Latin America, and revolution and democracy in Latin America.
His first book, Fulgencio Batista: From Revolutionary to Strongman was published in 2006. Choice Magazine selected his work as an Outstanding Book of the Year for 2007. His second book, A Brief History of the Caribbean, co-authored with Danilo Figueredo, was published in 2008. He is assistant editor of the Encyclopedia of Cuba (2003). He served as a Contributor to Encyclopedia of Caribbean Literature published in 2005. He also served as a Contributor to World Book Encyclopedia 2007-2010.
In addition to his books, Dr. Argote-Freyre is a Peer Reviewer for the Oxford University Press and has written numerous articles and book reviews on Cuba. He is involved in many social causes, including the struggle for immigrant rights and social justice. He serves as Chair of the New Jersey Commission on New Americans and is the President of the Latino Action Network and Director of the Latino Coalition.

““Fixing failed states: the folly of foreign aid, the catastrophe of counterinsurgency, and the embers of entrepreneurship”

World Affairs Council of Central Illinois Presentation/Dinner
Speaker: Jesse Sullivan

Tuesday, May 2, 7:30 pm, Brookens Auditorium, University of Illinois Springfield
Program is free and open to the public.
Reception 5:30/Dinner 6:15 pm in PAC Restaurant, Program 7:30 pm in Brookens Auditorium

Mr. Sullivan has been the recipient of many awards and is widely recognized. In the broadest sense, Jesse Sullivan brings a diverse background with expertise in the following areas: livelihoods, economic opportunity, clean energy and financial services. However, when you delve further you will find his life has been one of dedicating and creating value in the most challenging environments.
In the deadliest district of Afghanistan Jesse led a team on counterinsurgency operations with the U.S. Department of Defense. His commanding officer stated, “Sullivan’s impact is immeasurable in dollars saved and lives not lost.” Sullivan was awarded the Global War on Terrorism Medal, the NATO Service Award, and was named a National Veteran Fellow by the World Affairs Council.
After the earthquake in Haiti of 2010, Jesse served as the Special Assistant to the Haitian Ambassador for Relief Efforts where he was named CNN’s Most Intriguing Person of the Day. He was responsible for shaping the resettlement strategy for Haiti’s largest refugee camp.
In South America, Jesse launched two academies for entrepreneurship; and in Bhutan, he worked with the Royal Family to design the nation’s first impact investment fund using the concept of Gross National Happiness. Also, in Palestine, Jesse worked with youth groups doing interfaith reconciliation work;
He served as a foreign policy advisor on a U.S. Congressional campaign, and helped to grow a national nonprofit to assist wounded veterans returning from Iraq & Afghanistan called The Mission Continues. Sullivan also founded OneWorld, a global justice magazine, that has circulated over 100,000 copies, received national awards, and even Desmond Tutu said, “It blew my mind.”
Most recently, Jesse is the founder & CEO of Alter, a venture that aims to transform failed states through entrepreneurship. The goal is to create jobs in poor countries rather than provide handouts, by finding the best entrepreneurs and matching them with Silicon Valley resources.
Sullivan received his bachelors degree from Saint Louis University in Theology & International Studies. He received a Master’s degree in Global Governance & Diplomacy from Oxford University as Rotary Scholar and received an MBA from Stanford Graduate School of Business where he was a recipient of the Social Change Leadership Award.

Immigrants and Refugees: A Dilemma for U.S. Leaders and Society.

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

It seems that not a day goes by without reading or hearing about the topic of immigration, the refugee crisis and building the wall on the U.S.-Mexican border. We are pleased to have Pamela Constable, the Washington Post Bureau Chief for Afghanistan and Pakistan, as our speaker on April 4th. She will be addressing the international refugee crisis from the Middle East and its impact on the U.S. and Europe, and will also be addressing the issue of illegal immigration.

Afghanistan and Pakistan remain states of United States foreign policy concern. Constable has provided extensive reporting since 1988 from Pakistan and Afghanistan, as well as India and Iraq. Having resided in Kabul, Constable’s experiences regarding the region will inform the topic of her talk with us.

Pamela Constable has been the Washington Post bureau chief for Pakistan and Afghanistan since the summer of 2016 and was formerly the deputy foreign editor at The Washington Post. Prior to joining The Washington Post in 1994, Constable was a foreign correspondent and foreign policy reporter for The Boston Globe, where she covered South and Central America, focusing on Chile and Haiti, as well as parts of Asia and the former Soviet Union.

Constable is the author of Fragments of Grace: My Search or Meaning in the Strife in South Asia (Potomac Books, 2004) and the co-author of A Nation of Enemies: Chili under Pinochet (W. W. Norton, 1993).

Constable is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, a former member of the Public Policy Scholar at the Woodrow Wilson Center in 2010; a former fellow at the Alicia Patterson Foundation; and the winner of the Maria Moors Cabot prize. A graduate of Brown University, she was also a resident in the Pew International Journalism Program at Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies.

This program will be held at Brookens Auditorium, University of Illinois Springfield.

Reception: 5:30 p.m., Dinner: 6:15 p.m. , Program 7:30 p.m.



“NATO and the Relationship between Poland and the Illinois National Guard”

NATO has been in the news a lot lately. It is perhaps timely to hear from Major General Richard J. Hayes Jr. Major General Hayes is 39th Adjunct General of State of Illinois, principal advisor on military matters to Governor Rauner, and serves as Director of the Illinois Department of Military Affairs in the governor’s cabinet.

To help us better understand what is going on in the world, and how to participate in making the world a better place for our families and future generations, we are honored to have Major General Hayes Jr. with us this evening. He will discuss NATO along with the relationship between the Illinois National Guard and Poland.

Major General Hayes is the senior officer in the chain of command for both the Illinois Army and the Air National Guard. General Hayes, a highly decorated officer,
is responsible for the Illinois National Guard and oversees approximately 13,000 men and women in uniform and 230 in civilian employees in the Illinois Department of Military Affairs.

Some of the Major General’s awards include: National Defense Service Medal (with 1 Bronze Service Star), Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Kosovo Campaign Medal, North Atlantic Treaty Organization Non-Article 5 Medal,Illinois Distinguished Service Medal, Humanitarian Service Medal, Kansas University ROTC Alumni Hall of Fame, to name a few.

Major General Hayes holds a Master of Strategic Studies from United States War College, and Master of Business Administration, General Management from Touro University National.

Tuesday, March 14, 7:30 pm, Hoogland Center for the Arts, 420 South Sixth Street, Springfield
Program is free and open to the public.
Reception 5:30/Dinner 6:15 pm in , Program 7:30 pm in Club Room of the Hoogland Center for the Arts