Joan E. Bowes – James Madison Distinguished Speaker Series
Continuing a family passion for learning, Joan E. Bowes established the Joan E. Bowes-James Madison Distinguished Speaker Series through the School of Law to inspire law students and other members of the San Diego community, and promote the open exchange of ideas. Bearing the name of James Madison—fourth president of the United States and “Father of the Constitution”—this annual series brings distinguished speakers from the fields of law, diplomacy, government and politics to the University of San Diego.
Bowes’ connection with the School of Law began in 1985 when University of San Diego Distinguished Professor of Law Bernard Siegan asked the longtime La Jolla resident and civic activist to form the San Diego Commission for the Bicentennial of the United States Constitution. By September 1987, when Joan’s committee had completed its ambitious mission, San Diego was second only to Philadelphia in the number of educational and celebratory events held in one metropolitan area. From then on, Joan’s ties to the School of Law were solidly forged.
Former White House policy analyst, #1 New York Times bestselling author and director of the movie 2016
November 28, 2012
"What's So Great About America"
As in his book What's So Great About America, Dinesh D'Souza gave his most auto-biographical talk about how America has changed both his own life and the history of the world. America's principles, systems of government, and value of individual rights has made it into the most prosperous and powerful nation. D'Souza argued that in the aftermath of September 11, American ideals and patriotism should not be things we shy away from. He offered the grounds for a solid, well-considered pride in the Western pillars of "science, democracy and capitalism," while deconstructing arguments from both the political left and right. As an "outsider" from India who has had amazing success in the United States, D'Souza defended not an idealized America, but America as he sees it, and measured America not against a utopian ideal, but against the rest of the world's countries.
Editor of the influential Washington-based political magazine, The Weekly Standard
October 28, 2011
"Liberalism, Conservatism and the Tea Party: The Meaning of the 2012 Election"
The 2008 election looked like the end of a 28-year conservative era, and the dawn of a liberal one. The results of the 2010 election put this judgment in doubt. Liberalism seems less ascendant than liberals expected it to be, conservatism less dead than conservatives feared. This is partly thanks to the Tea Party—which raises its own questions about the future of conservative thought. So one can say that, as the 2012 election approaches, New Deal/Great Society liberalism is in trouble, and Reagan–Bush conservatism seems not up to the task as well. What are the alternative paths conservatism and liberalism might take. What about the populist and "constitutionalist" sentiments captured by the Tea Party? Could 2012 be an inflection point for American politics, like 1932 and 1980? And in what direction might we inflect? These and other questions—including issues of the role of the courts and the meaning of appeals to the Constitution—will be considered.
Senior political analyst, Washington Examiner; contributor, Fox News Channel; and resident fellow, American Enterprise Institute
November 9, 2009
"American Politics: Are we in a New Era?"
Michael Barone served as law clerk to Judge Wade H. McCree, Jr., of the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit from 1969 to 1971. From 1974 to 1981 he was vice president of the polling firm of Peter D. Hart Research Associates. From 1981 to 1988 he was a member of the editorial page staff of the Washington Post. From 1989 to 1996 and again from 1998 to 2009 , he was a senior writer with U.S. News & World Report. From 1996 to 1998 he was a senior staff editor of Reader’s Digest.
Over the years Barone has written for many other publications in the United States and several other countries, including the Economist, the Times Literary Supplement and the Daily Telegraph and the Sunday Times of London. His column is syndicated by Creators Syndicate. He has traveled to all 50 states and all 435 congressional districts. He has also traveled to 37 foreign countries and has reported on recent elections in Britain, Italy, Russia and Mexico.
Former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations
December 8, 2008
"Foreign Policy for the Next U.S. President"
The son of a Baltimore firefighter and the first person in his family to go to college, with scholarships to Yale University and Yale Law School, John Bolton studied with preeminent conservative thinkers Robert Bork and Ralph Winter. After law school, he experienced the "Reagan Revolution" firsthand in Edwin Meese’s justice department-where the American judiciary was fundamentally reshaped. His diplomatic skills were honed working with Secretary of State James Baker during the presidency of George H. W. Bush, and serving in the administration of President George W. Bush as Undersecretary of State for Arms Control and International Security Affairs. Bolton also served as the United States Permanent Representative to the United Nations from August 1, 2005 to December 9, 2006. Prior to being named ambassador, Bolton was Senior Vice President of the American Enterprise Institute (AEI). He supervised the AEI research program, financial oversight, dissemination of the AEI research and publications, public affairs and general management. Bolton currently serves as a Senior Fellow at the American Enterprise Institute and is of counsel to the law firm Kirkland & Ellis, in their Washington D.C. office. He is also involved with a broad assortment of conservative think tanks and policy institutes, including the American Enterprise Institute (AEI), Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs (JINSA), Project for the New American Century (PNAC), Institute of East-West Dynamics, National Rifle Association, US Commission on International Religious Freedom, and the Council for National Policy (CNP).
Ambassador Bolton is the author of numerous journal articles; his book Surrender is Not an Option: Defending America at the United Nations and Abroad was published by Simon and Schuster in 2007. He resides in Bethesda, Md., with his wife Gretchen Smith Bolton.
Edwin Meese, III
75th Attorney General of the United States
November 27, 2007
"The Constitution in Peace and War"
Edwin Meese, III served as the 75th Attorney General of the United States from February 1985 to August 1988 and as Counselor to the President from January 1981 to February 1985. As Attorney General and as Counselor, Meese was a key member of President Ronald Reagan’s Cabinet and the National Security Council. He directed the Department of Justice and led international efforts to combat terrorism, drug trafficking and organized crime. A graduate of Yale University, Meese also holds a law degree from the University of California at Berkeley. From 1977 to 1981, he was a professor of law and director of the Center for Criminal Justice Policy and Management at the University of San Diego. Meese is the author of With Reagan: The Inside Story, (Regnery Gateway, 1992); coeditor of Making America Safer, (The Heritage Foundation, 1997); and coauthor of Leadership, Ethics and Policing, (Prentice Hall, 2004).
President and General Counsel for Alliance for School Choice
October 30, 2006
"The Conservative Case for an Activist Judiciary"
Clint Bolick is president and general counsel of the Phoenix-based Alliance for School Choice, the nation’s leading advocacy organization for school choice. Focused on the educational needs of economically or otherwise disadvantaged schoolchildren, the Alliance was launched on May 17, 2004, the 50th anniversary of Brown v. Board of Education, to help fulfill the promise of educational opportunities for children who desperately need them.
Previously, Bolick cofounded and served as vice president of the Institute for Justice, a Washington, D.C.-based libertarian public interest firm. Bolick led the litigation team that defended the constitutionality of school choice programs across the nation, which culminated in 2002 in the successful defense of the Cleveland program in the landmark U.S. Supreme Court decision, Zelman v. Simmons-Harris. In 2003, American Lawyer recognized Bolick as one of the nation's three lawyers of the year in light of his legal work in support of school choice. He also serves as a senior fellow with the Goldwater Institute and as a research fellow with the Hoover Institution.
In 2003, Bolick recounted the experiences of 12 years of school choice litigation in Voucher Wars: Waging the Legal Battle Over School Choice, published by the Cato Institute. His newest book, David’s Hammer: The Case for an Activist Judiciary, will be published in 2006.
Abigail Thernstrom and Stephan Thernstrom
November 3, 2005
"Let's Talk about Segregation"
Abigail Thernstrom is vice chair of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, a senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute in New York and a member of the Massachusetts State Board of Education. She received her PhD from the Department of Government at Harvard University. Stephan Thernstrom is the Winthrop Professor of History at Harvard University, where he teaches American social history, and senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute. The Thernstroms are the coauthors of America in Black and White: One Nation, Indivisible (Simon & Schuster), which the New York Times Book Review named as one of the notable books of 1997. Their latest book, No Excuses: Closing the Racial Gap in Learning , was published by Simon & Schuster in October 2003.
Michael Medved (inaugural speaker)
Author, Film Critic and Nationally Syndicated Radio Talk Show Host
November 15, 2004
"Media vs. Civilization: How the Messages of the Entertainment Industry Undermine the Foundations of a Free and Ordered Society."
Michael Medved hosts a daily, nationally syndicated radio talk show, broadcast in more than 160 cities to millions of listeners. He served for 12 years as cohost of "Sneak Previews," the weekly movie review show on PBS TV, and for five years as chief film critic for the New York Post. He is the author of nine non-fiction books, including Right Turns: 40 Unconventional Lessons from a Controversial Life (Crown/Random House 2005).