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Waldo Family Lecture on International Relations
Thursday, October 9, 2008
7:00 p.m., North Cafeteria, Webb University Center
Senator John W. Warner
"The freedoms and blessings of American citizenship were not attained on the cheap; they were forged by generations who lived up to its responsibilities, which include defending liberty and protecting America's principles at home and abroad." - Senator John W. Warner
Senator John Warner understands as well as anyone what it means to serve the public, having spent over 40 years in government and military service.
Senator Warner was first elected to the Senate in 1978, but his career in public service began long before then. He enlisted in the Navy at the age of 17 during World War II. It was not long after he completed his naval service that the nation was again at war, this time in Korea. Responding to the call, Warner served in Korea as an officer in the Marine Corps.
From 1969 to 1974, Senator Warner served first as Undersecretary, then as Secretary of the Navy, leading the Navy and the Marine Corps through the second half of the Vietnam conflict. Following his work as Secretary of the Navy, Senator Warner was appointed by the President to coordinate the celebration of the Bicentennial of the founding of the United States of America, directing the federal role at events in all fifty states and in 22 foreign countries.
Senator Warner has won five consecutive elections to the U.S. Senate, beginning in 1978. In 2005, Senator Warner became the second-longest serving U.S. Senator from Virginia in the 218-year history of the Senate.
Now serving in his twenty-ninth year in the Senate, Warner is the former Chairman, and now the second-ranking Republican, of the Senate Armed Services Committee, having begun his association with our men and women in uniform over sixty years ago. In this capacity, and throughout his career, he has shown unwavering support for the men and women of the armed forces. He has also been a champion of modernizing the structure and operations of the military to ensure its effectiveness in the 21st century.
Senator Warner also serves as the second-ranking Republican on two other committees, the Senate Intelligence Committee and the Senate Committee on the Environment and Public Works. In addition, he serves on the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Government Affairs.
Senator Warner has earned a reputation as a savvy legislator whose style reflects the character of the Senate itself, favoring pragmatism over partisanship. Clearly, his experience as a Marine officer, sailor and Secretary of the Navy has strongly influenced his leadership and legislative styles.