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Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice to be Keynote Speaker at University of Mobile Leadership Banquet

Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice will be the keynote speaker at the seventh annual University of Mobile Leadership Banquet on Nov. 10, which also celebrates the school’s 50th anniversary, UMobile President Dr. Mark Foley announced today.

Rice, a native of Birmingham, Ala., served as the 66th secretary of state of the United States from January 2005 to 2009. Before serving as America’s chief diplomat, she served as assistant to the president for national security affairs (national security advisor) from January 2001 to 2005.

“The University of Mobile is committed to bringing to our area exceptional leaders who can provide a unique insight into affairs of our nation and our world. We are honored that Condoleezza Rice is sharing her experiences on the international stage with us while helping us raise scholarship funds for America’s future leaders who are being educated at the University of Mobile,” Foley said.

The annual University of Mobile Leadership Banquet raises financial support for the school’s annual academic scholarship fund while bringing a speaker of national prominence to the Mobile area. Previous speakers have included former President George W. Bush, former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, former Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives Newt Gingrich, former Georgia Gov. and retired U.S. Sen. Zell Miller, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, and best-selling author and motivational speaker Andy Andrews.

The gala event highlights themes of faith, leadership and patriotism. This year’s event will also celebrate the university’s 50th anniversary. Entertainment includes several of the 22 performing ensembles from the University of Mobile Center for Performing Arts, which has presented concerts in such diverse settings as Carnegie Hall, the White House, European cathedrals and at concert halls, churches and schools throughout the region.

The Leadership Banquet will be held at the Arthur R. Outlaw Convention Center in Mobile. For information on tickets and sponsorships, visit the University of Mobile website at or call the UMobile Development Office at 251.442.2212 or email

The University of Mobile is a Christian university affiliated with the Alabama Baptist State Convention where more than 1,700 undergraduate and graduate students are enrolled in over 40 areas of study.

Condoleezza Rice is Professor of Political Economy in the Graduate School of Business, Thomas and Barbara Stephenson Senior Fellow on Public Policy at the Hoover Institution and Professor of Political Science at Stanford University.

From January 2005 to 2009, she served as the 66th secretary of state of the United States. Before serving as America’s chief diplomat, she served as assistant to the president for national security affairs (national security advisor) from January 2001 to 2005.

Rice joined the Stanford University faculty as a professor of political science in 1981 and served as Stanford University’s provost from 1993 to 1999. She was a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution from 1991 to 1993 and returned to the Hoover Institution after serving as provost until 2001. As a professor, Rice won two of the highest teaching honors: the 1984 Walter J. Gores Award for Excellence in Teaching and the 1993 School of Humanities and Sciences Dean’s Award for Distinguished Teaching.

She is the author of Extraordinary, Ordinary People: A Memoir of Family (October 2010), which shares how her upbringing in segregated Birmingham, Alabama—along with her strong, caring family and parents—helped to shape the course of her life. She has also has authored and co-authored several other books, including Germany Unified and Europe Transformed: A Study in Statecraft (1995), with Philip Zelikow; The Gorbachev Era (1986), with Alexander Dallin and Uncertain Allegiance: The Soviet Union and the Czechoslovak Army (1984).

Rice served as a member of the boards of directors for the Chevron, Charles Schwab and Transamerica corporations. She was a founding board member of the Center for a New Generation, an educational support fund for schools in East Palo Alto and East Menlo Park, Calif., and was vice president of the Boys and Girls Club of the Peninsula. She currently serves on the board of the Boys and Girls Club of America.

Rice has been involved in a number of humanitarian pursuits, most notably with PEPFAR (The President's Emergency Plan for Aids Relief) and in creating and serving on the board of the Millennium Challenge Corporation. Both endeavors increased aid to developing countries and the world's poorest, most disadvantaged populations. PEPFAR was the largest commitment of funds from any single nation to combat a single disease at any time in history and the Millennium Challenge Corporation promotes sustainable economic growth and poverty reduction.

She currently serves as a member of the board of trustees of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. In addition, she is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Rice earned her bachelor’s degree in political science, cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa, from the University of Denver in 1974; her master’s from the University of Notre Dame in 1975; and her Ph.D. from the Graduate School of International Studies at the University of Denver in 1981.

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