Diplomats, Historians Headline British-US Conference

KNOXVILLE — Former Secretaries of State Henry Kissinger and Lawrence Eagleburger, former National Security Adviser Brent Scowcroft, former U.S. Sen. Howard Baker Jr., Newsweek managing editor Jon Meacham and Winston S. Churchill, grandson of Sir Winston Churchill, will headline a conference on U.S.-British relations at the University of Tennessee March 29-30.

“The United States and Britain: The Legacy of Churchill’s Atlantic Alliance” — which commemorates the 60th anniversary of Winston Churchill’s famous “Iron Curtain” speech — is a collaboration of UT’s Howard Baker Center for Public Policy and the Churchill Archives Centre at Cambridge University in England. The conference, free and open to the public, will be held at the Carolyn P. Brown University Center on the Knoxville campus.

In addition to talks by the headliners, highlights of the conference will include a look at the personal diplomacy of British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher and President Ronald Reagan by Lord Charles Powell, former private secretary and foreign policy adviser to Thatcher, and an analysis of the British-American relationship in light of security concerns in today’s world by Dr. Thomas Barnett, author of “The Pentagon’s New Map.”

The conference also will feature panels of notable British and American historians and diplomats discussing topics ranging from “Hot War to Cold War” to “Breaking the Berlin Wall” to “Reflecting on Greatness.”

Many of the participants’ books will be available to purchase on site and book signings will be held during conference breaks.

-The alliance between Great Britain and the United States has been a key feature of the international scene for more than 60 years. From the trials of World War II, through the Cold War and to the present day War on Terror, our two nations have stayed closely tied together,” Baker Center Executive Director Alan Lowe said. “We look forward to having tremendously distinguished speakers here to talk about the past, present and future of this very special relationship.”

Baker Center and the Churchill Archives share the goal of preserving history to help shape the future.

The Baker Center, which opened in 2003, is a non-partisan center dedicated to creating a better understanding of government and fostering a greater appreciation for the importance of public service. The center offers programs for students, teachers and the public, and houses a collection of political papers.

The Churchill Archives Centre, built in 1973, is part of Churchill College at Cambridge University. The center houses 3,000 boxes of Sir Winston Churchill’s letters and documents ranging from his first childhood letters to his great war-time speeches to the writings which earned him the Nobel Prize for Literature. The center has Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher’s personal and political papers, and also holds the papers of more than 570 prominent people which serve to document the history of the Churchill era and after.

A black-tie gala fund-raising dinner on March 29 will coincide with the conference. The Churchill Centre and the Baker Center will further their programs with proceeds of the dinner, to be held at the East Tennessee History Center, 601 Gay St., Knoxville.

For a full schedule of events, visit http://bakercenter.utk.edu/churchill.htm.

Contact:
Amy Blakely, (865) 974-5034, amy.blakely@tennessee.edu
Alan Lowe, (865) 974-8515, alowe4@tennessee.edu