The Oksenberg Lecture, held annually, honors the legacy of Professor Michel Oksenberg (1938-2001). A senior fellow at Shorenstein APARC and the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies, Professor Oksenberg served as a key member of the National Security Council when the United States normalized relations with China, and consistently urged that the United States engage with Asia in a more considered manner. In tribute, the Oksenberg Lecture recognizes distinguished individuals who have helped to advance understanding between the United States and the nations of the Asia-Pacific. This year's lecturer is Brent Scowcroft.
Brent Scowcroft served as the National Security Advisor to both Presidents Gerald Ford and George H.W. Bush. From 1982 to 1989, he was vice chairman of Kissinger Associates, Inc., an international consulting firm. In this capacity, he advised and assisted a wide range of U.S. and foreign corporate leaders on global joint venture opportunities, strategic planning, and risk assessment.
Dr. Scowcroft's twenty-nine-year military career began with graduation from West Point and concluded at the rank of Lieutenant General following service as the Deputy National Security Advisor. His Air Force service included professor of Russian History at West Point; head of the Political Science Department at the Air Force Academy; special assistant to the Director of the Joint Chiefs of Staff; and military assistant to President Nixon.
Out of uniform, he continued in a public policy capacity by serving on the President's Advisory Committee on Arms Control and the Commission on Strategic Forces. He was also one of the key members of the President's Special Review Board, also known as the Tower Commission. The Tower Commission, appointed by President Ronald Reagan in 1986, produced a report that was highly critical of the Reagan Administration and of the National Security Council's dealings with both Iran and the Nicaraguan Contras.