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Mikhail Gorbachev to deliver law lecture on May 9
STANFORD -- It is now confirmed. The Russians are coming - again - on Saturday, May 9.
Two years after Mikhail and Raisa Gorbachev wowed the Stanford community during a historic visit, the couple will return for a day. The former Soviet president will accept a one-day appointment as a visiting professor of law and deliver a public lecture on "The Rule of Law." Former Secretary of State George Shultz, a distinguished fellow at the Hoover Institution, will host Gorbachev's visit.
Shultz, who noted that Gorbachev declared "the Cold War is behind us" in his 1990 Stanford speech, said that he is "pleased and honored to welcome President and Mrs. Gorbachev back to Stanford in this exciting and challenging post-Cold War era for which he deserves so much of the credit."
The Gorbachevs will arrive late Friday evening, May 8, as guests at the campus home of Shultz and his wife, O'Bie, following a major dinner speech in San Francisco to benefit the Gorbachev Foundation/USA.
The couple will have breakfast with a small Stanford group before the 11 a.m. speech in Memorial Auditorium.
The program will begin with President Donald Kennedy welcoming President and Mrs. Gorbachev. Law Dean Paul Brest will introduce Gorbachev as the 1992 Herman Phleger Visiting Professor of Law and invite him to present his lecture. Simultaneous translation will be provided.
Anticipating his guest, Brest said, "President Gorbachev was trained as a lawyer, and it will be a great honor to have him as a visiting professor and colleague at the Law School."
Cosponsoring the visit is the Institute for International Studies, whose director, Prof. Walter Falcon, will make a gift presentation to Gorbachev after the speech from the Wesson Fund in International Relations. The Wesson Fund was endowed by the late Robert Wesson, a political scientist specializing in Soviet and Latin American issues and senior research fellow at the Hoover Institution.
Falcon said his institute is "delighted to be involved because Gorbachev's interests parallel our recent initiatives in the new Europe." At noon, the Gorbachevs will tour a reassembled Hoover Institution exhibit, "A Century of Revolutions: Lenin to Gorbachev," created for their first campus visit. Time constraints prevented them from seeing it when they visited Stanford for two hours on June 4, 1990.
The Gorbachevs will then proceed to Stauffer Auditorium, where the Hoover Institution will host a luncheon for them and about 100 other guests. Gorbachev is expected to make brief remarks and possibly answer questions. Hoover Institution Director John Raisian said that he and his colleagues were "disappointed that President Gorbachev's schedule last time did not allow him to visit Hoover, so we are especially pleased to welcome him this time."
Kennedy said that "Stanford is delighted to have a second visit from this extraordinary architect of global transformation. I'm looking forward to seeing him again."
Arrangements for tickets to the Memorial Auditorium event have not been worked out, but Kennedy said that special provisions would be made to reserve a block of seats for Law School students, faculty and the board of visitors, who coincidentally will be on campus. (The visitors is a group of alumni who annually advise the dean and faculty on Law School curriculum and other matters.) The Herman Phleger Visiting Professorship was established in 1972 through gifts from Herman Phleger and his wife, the former Mary Elena Macondray. The lecturership is conferred periodically on individuals of high distinction in law who deliver a public lecture at the university.
Kennedy has appointed Robert Freelen, vice president for public affairs, to head a working committee that will arrange details during the next seven weeks. Plans call for the Gorbachevs to visit seven major cities during their May 1-16 United States tour. The trip is sponsored by the Gorbachev Foundation/USA, a nonprofit group based in San Francisco, dedicated to furthering "democratic institutions and the emerging new world order," according to its executive director, Jim Garrison. Former President Ronald Reagan is honorary chairman of the overall visit and Shultz chairs the host committee.
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