Former Secretary of Defense Robert Gates to give Anderson Lecture

Robert Gates

Robert Gates

Former Secretary of Defense Robert Gates is the speaker for the 2015 Anderson Distinguished Lecture Series presented by Miami University's Farmer School of Business. He will present "Duty" at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 23, in Millett Hall. The lecture is free and open to the public.

Gates served as secretary of defense 2006-2011 and is the only one in U.S. history to be asked to remain in that office by a newly elected president. He served in the position under Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama. On Gates’ last day in office, President Obama awarded him the Presidential Medal of Freedom, America’s highest civilian honor.

Before becoming secretary of defense in 2006, Gates was the president of Texas A&M University. Prior to assuming the presidency in 2002, he served as interim dean of the university’s George Bush School of Government and Public Service 1999-2001.

Gates joined the Central Intelligence Agency in 1966 and spent nearly 27 years as an intelligence professional. During that period, he spent nearly nine years at the National Security Council and the White House, serving four presidents from two political parties.

Gates served as director of central intelligence 1991-1993. He is the only career officer in the CIA’s history to rise from entry-level employee to director. He served as assistant to the president and deputy national security adviser at the White House January 1989-November 1991, for President George H.W. Bush.

Gates has been awarded the National Security Medal and the Presidential Citizens Medal and has three times received the National Intelligence Distinguished Service Medal and the CIA’s highest award, the Distinguished Intelligence Medal.

He has also authored two memoirs. Duty: Memoirs of a Secretary at War (2014), an account of his experience serving Presidents Bush and Obama during the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, was a New York Times No. 1 best-seller. His other memoir, From the Shadows: The Ultimate Insider’s Story of Five Presidents and How They Won the Cold War (1996), details his career as a CIA officer at the center of power during a time when the threat of global annihilation informed America’s every move.

Gates received his bachelor’s degree from the College of William & Mary, his master’s degree in history from Indiana University and his doctorate in Russian and Soviet history from Georgetown University.

Gates currently is chancellor of William & Mary and president of the Boy Scouts of America. He is a partner in the consulting firm, RHG LLC, with former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and others. He has also served on the board of directors and executive committee of the American Council on Education and the board of directors of the National Association of State Universities and Land-Grant Colleges.

The Jack R. Anderson Distinguished Lecture Series, funded through an endowment established by Jack R. Anderson (Miami ’41) in 2000, exposes students, faculty and staff to people and ideas that are impacting business and society. 

ASL interpreters will be provided for the lecture. Other accommodation requests should be directed to student disability services at (513) 529-1541 or at least 48 hours prior to the event.