Felipe Calderon to be Next Global Leaders Series Speaker



Colgate recently announced that former President of Mexico Felipe Calderon will visit Colgate on April 13 as this year’s speaker for the Kerschner Family Global Leaders Lecture Series. Calderon, the 56th President of Mexico, will speak in the Sanford Field House and his lecture will be the final event of Spring Family Weekend.

Fitting into this list of notable leaders is Felipe Calderon who served as President of Mexico from 2006 to 2012. Now the Angelopoulos Global Public Leaders Fellow at Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government, Calderon was named Leader of the Year by the Latin Business Chronicle in 2007 and Time magazine named him as one of the top 100 most influential people in the world in 2010. As the President of Mexico, Calderon worked to modernize his country’s infrastructure, improving and updating highways, airports, energy plants, water system hospital and schools. He also helped stabilize the Mexican economy in the midst of the recession.

Calder??n has faced controversy for escalating the war against drug cartels by deploying 50,000 troops and federal police against the cartels starting in late 2006. In the time since Calder??n’s government has crack-downed on cartels, it is estimated that more than 60,000 people have been killed in drug-related violence and thousands more disappeared. While many Mexicans have supported Calder??n’s tough stance against the cartels, the military under him has been linked to rights abuse and civilian deaths.

First-year Alex Esteve is from Mexico and said she is excited to have her country’s former President visit.

“I never thought that by coming to Colgate I would get the chance to meet Calder??n…I have great respect for some of his policies and I’m curious to hear what he has to say. I think it will be a unique and interesting experience for everyone.”

Colgate has already hosted well-known figures this year, welcoming Neil DeGrasse Tyson this week and Salman Rushdie during the first semester. Facebook COO Sheryl Sandburg will also be visiting campus during Colgate’s Entrepreneur Weekend which is starting on April 5.

The Kerschner Family Series Global Leaders began in 2007 and was started to bring notable speakers to campus each year in order to “[expand] Colgate’s reputation and our students’ access to 21st century newsmakers,” according to the Colgate website. The Series, which is funded by the Society of Families, has enabled Colgate to bring notable speakers such as Richard Branson, President Bill Clinton, the Dalai Lama, former British Prime Minister Tony Blair, and General Colin Powell to campus.

“It is a privilege to go to a school that offers its students the opportunity to hear from so many diverse people about their different experiences,” said first year Tom Raymond.

 Calder??n will speak in the Sanford Field House on Saturday, April 13 at 5 p.m. Information on how to get tickets will be posted soon and will be available on the Colgate University Global Leaders Lecture page.

Contact Sarah Chandler

at [email protected]