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The University of Texas at Austin

Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs



LBJ School of Public Affairs Announces Appointment of Congressman Harold Ford Jr. Inaugural Barbara Jordan Visiting Professor

Congressional Veteran To Keynote Twelfth Annual Barbara Jordan Forum On Public Policy In Addition To Conducting Classes In 2008

Austin, TX - October 11, 2007 - Former U.S. Representative (D – TN) and 2006 Senate candidate, Harold Ford Jr., has been appointed the inaugural Barbara Jordan Visiting Professor at the Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs, at the University of Texas at Austin, it was announced today by James Steinberg, Dean of the LBJ School.  In addition to his appointment, Ford will serve as the keynote speaker for the Twelfth Annual Barbara Jordan Forum on Public Policy, scheduled in February 2008. As visiting professor, the former four-term congressman will conduct classes for the LBJ School’s American Politics and Policy Seminars, present a public lecture and participate in dialogues on prominent public issues.

Congressman Harold Ford, Jr.

In making the announcement, Steinberg said, “Barbara Jordan was one of the LBJ School’s distinguished faculty members who inspired countless young people into public service careers. Clearly, Harold Ford matches her commitment to public service as a mentor, an educator and a leader for a new generation. This is just a tremendous opportunity for the LBJ School and our students.”

Ford said of the appointment, "Barbara Jordan was a pioneer who understood the importance of government as an instrument to get things done. To her, politics was a part of governing - not the other way around. Today's politics is polluted with empty slogans, divisiveness and pettiness. Her politics was about ideas. The thoughtful and sober debate of those very ideas, the result of which delivered for the very people who actually believed that government is indeed of, by and for the people. I'm so proud and honored to be associated with such a towering legacy, such a soaring patriot and an unending believer in the goodness of America to do good for all."

The Barbara Jordan National Forum on Public Policy was created by students at the LBJ School of Public Affairs in honor of Professor Jordan.  The forum engages scholars, practitioners and community leaders in an intellectual dialogue about vital issues in public policy, while promoting the importance of public service and community engagement and commemorating the legacy of Professor Barbara Jordan.

Harold Ford, Jr. served Tennessee in the United States Congress for 10 years. Described by President Bill Clinton as “the walking, living embodiment of where America ought to go in the 21st century,” Ford is now Chairman of the Democratic Leadership Council and Vice Chairman of Merrill Lynch and Co., Inc. Ford is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania, where he got his B.A. in American history, and the University of Michigan Law School. Ford also serves on the Pentagon’s Transformation Advisory Group (TAG), an assembly of current and former military commanders, political figures, academics and business leaders who advise the Pentagon on how to modernize our armed forces to meet and defeat 21st century threats.  Ford is also an overseer on the board at the International Rescue Committee (IRC). Ford lives in Memphis and Nashville and has offices in New York and Nashville.

Barbara Jordan

The Barbara Jordan Visiting Professorship is funded through the Barbara Jordan Chair in Ethics and Political Values, an endowment created in 1997 is intended to promote training in ethics and values-based decision making.

Barbara Jordan’s legislative career began with her election to the Texas Legislature in 1966. Jordan's victory made her the first African-American woman to serve in the Texas Senate and the first African-American elected to that body since 1883. In 1972 she became the first African-American woman from the South to be elected to the United States Congress, serving as a member of the House of Representatives until 1979.

From 1979 until her death in 1996, Jordan served as a distinguished professor at the LBJ School of Public Affairs, holding the Lyndon B. Johnson Centennial Chair in National Policy. She was the recipient of 31 honorary doctorates and numerous national awards. In 1994 President Bill Clinton presented her with the Presidential Medal of Honor, and in 1999 Texas Monthly magazine named her Role Model of the Century.

Barbara Jordan graduated from Texas Southern University, where she majored in political science. She received a law degree from Boston University.

For more information contact: Susan Binford, Assistant Dean for Communications, LBJ School 512-232-4006 (office), 626-818-2233(mobile); Elizabeth Lowery, Office of the Chairman, Honorable Harold Ford, Jr. 202-608-1207 (office), 202-262-6831(mobile).

Press:

News 9 West - Harold Ford Jr. to teach at UT's LBJ School

Tennessean - Harold Ford Jr. to teach at University of Texas

KXAN (Austin) - Harold Ford Jr. To Teach At Texas' LBJ School

WTVF (Nashville, TN) - Harold Ford Jr. To Teach At University Of Texas

Memphis Daily News - Harold Ford Jr. to Teach at University of Texas

WMV-TV Memphis - Harold Ford Jr. to teach at University of Texas

WTVF (Nashville, TN) - Correction: Ford-University of Texas story