June 16-18, 2014
Updated: February 18, 2014
2014 APSCU Convention Keynote Sessions
Opening General Session
Monday, June 16, 2014
|Honorable Bob Kerrey
Opening General Session
Monday, June 16, 2014
As a courageous public servant, decorated Vietnam veteran and education leader, the Honorable Bob Kerrey represents the contributory spirit that distinguishes our city and our nation.
Today Bob Kerrey is executive chairman of the Minerva Institute for Research and Scholarship, supporting The Minerva Project, an exceptional liberal arts and sciences education with a redefined student body, reinvented curriculum, rigorous academic standards, cutting-edge technology, and an immersive global experience.
As of January 1, 2011, Bob Kerrey completed his tenure as seventh President of The New School, a university founded on strong democratic ideals and daring educational practices - an environment that was well suited for his leadership. He also served as New School President Emeritus from January 1, 2011 to January 31, 2013.
Under his leadership as President, The New School experienced an unprecedented period of growth. Enrollment and full-time faculty increased significantly, with the undergraduate population alone increasing by over 40 percent to 5,000 degree students. Since 2001, a record $198 million was raised for scholarships, professorships, capital projects, major conferences and cutting-edge research. The largest space expansion in the university’s history was successfully spearheaded under Bob Kerrey and is now nearing completion. A new signature building at 65 Fifth Avenue, scheduled to open in fall 2013, will embody the ahead-of-the-curve vision of The New School.
During Bob Kerrey’s tenure, the university made great progress in its international efforts. Its expanding graduate program in International Affairs matriculates nearly 500 students from 34 countries who work directly with high-profile practitioners and scholars. Additionally, the university launched the India China Institute, a think-tank with major outposts in New York, Mumbai and Beijing, and the Tishman Environment and Design Center, which has developed a forward-thinking environmental studies program.
Prior to coming to The New School Bob Kerrey represented Nebraska in the United States Senate. For two terms Senator Kerrey emphasized the direct connection between citizens and their laws, and made a concerted effort to allow Nebraskans to participate in writing laws that defined the quality and inclusiveness of their health care system, their schools and the safety of their communities. He served on the Senate’s Agriculture and Forestry Committee and was a leader in drafting farm legislation, soil and water conservation statutes, and regulations to promote equity in rural health, communication and transportation.
He also served on the Senate’s Appropriations Committee and worked to partner with community leaders throughout the state who were working on a variety of projects to create jobs, provide child care for working parents, build parks and more. On the Senate Finance Committee Senator Kerrey worked to enact legislation that strengthened taxpayers’ rights with the Internal Revenue Service and fought to make our tax code simpler and fairer. On the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence Senator Kerrey worked to restructure our intelligence agencies to improve their capacity to meet the threats faced by our country.
Prior to serving in the U.S. Senate Bob Kerrey served a single term as Nebraska’s Governor working to balance its budget, partner with the private sector to create jobs, improve the quality of Nebraska’s schools, college and university, and protect Nebraska’s fragile soil and water. Bob Kerrey established a reputation as a fiscal conservative who regularly crossed political party lines for the good of Nebraska and the Country.
Prior to serving as Governor Bob Kerrey was a businessman who helped build a chain of restaurants and health clubs that employed more than 1000 people. In between his term as Governor and his election to the U.S. Senate Bob Kerrey co-taught a class at the University of California at Santa Barbara with fellow Nebraskan Walter Capps. During this time Bob Kerrey also lectured to a government class at Omaha Central High School.
Prior to beginning his business Bob Kerrey served three years in the United States Navy in the Vietnam War. For his service as a Navy SEAL, he received a Congressional Medal of Honor. While in Vietnam, he was wounded, permanently disabled from the injury, and received from this injury a great gift: Sympathy for those who are suffering and an appreciation for the capacity of government to save your life. Through his terms as Governor and Senator of Nebraska, Bob Kerrey has stood up for the brave men and women who defend freedom here and abroad. Before his time in the Navy Bob Kerrey attended the University of Nebraska graduating in January 1966 with a BS degree in pharmacy. He was born in Lincoln and attended public schools there.