The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

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The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

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Tate Lecture Series features first female Liberian president

Tomorrow afternoon and evening, President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf will address SMU students, faculty and staff on her experiences as the first female president of Liberia. Sirleaf will hold a question and answer style forum in the afternoon, followed by an evening lecture in McFarlin Auditorium.

Sirleaf, Africa’s “Iron Lady,” has been a major supporter of democracy and peace in Liberia and around the world. She was elected the president of Liberia in 2005, and was the first woman to hold the highest office in an African nation.

Sirleaf earned her college degree at Harvard University and became a World Bank economist prior to her career in the government. An avid fighter against injustice, she was jailed for more than a year by former dictator General Samuel Doe after working to bring justice to Liberians.

She also received death threats from former President Charles Taylor and worked to remove him from office, partially instating the Transitional Government of Liberia to serve as interim leadership until elections in 2005.

She served as Chairperson of the Governance Reform Commission for the National Transitional Government until she accepted the nomination for President from the Unity Party of Liberia for the 2005 elections. She previously ran for, but was not elected, as President in the 1997 elections.

Prior to her presidency, she was the first woman to lead the United Nations Development Project for Africa. She also served in other positions such as Minister of Finance for Liberia, VP of Citicorp and Vice President of the HSBC Equator Bank.

The Turner Construction/Wachovia Student Forum will begin at 4:30 p.m. in the Hughes-Trigg Ballroom, followed by the evening lecture at 8:00 p.m. in McFarlin Auditorium.

Admission is free for the Student Forum. To guarantee seating, students should arrive by 4:15 p.m.

Students wishing to attend the evening lecture may get a ticket by going to the basement of McFarlin Auditorium beginning at 7 p.m. with their student IDs. Tickets are on a first-come, first-serve basis.

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