"I am hopeful that this challenge may alleviate this sense of political helplessness and restore to many people a belief in the processes of American politics and of American government."
-Eugene J. McCarthy
The annual public lectureship carries McCarthy's deep commitment to the ideals and principles of democratic self-government. It seeks to inspire a new generation of young people to pursue fresh ideas, to challenge the status quo, to effect positive change in their communities and, like McCarthy himself, to lead with honesty, integrity, and courage.
For 36 years, Senator Dodd represented Connecticut in the United States Congress and as the state's longest serving member was recognized as one of the most widely respected legislators in Congress, earning the trust of both Republicans and Democrats.
A key participant in nearly every major national policy debate over the last three decades, Senator Dodd is perhaps best known for authoring or co-authoring the Family and Medical Leave Act in 1993; the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act; the Help America Vote Act; and the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, crafted in the wake of one of the worst economic downturns in history.
Dodd served as a senior member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and is a recognized expert on Latin America. During his tenure he interacted extensively with leaders throughout Europe, Asia, Canada and Latin America and served as Co-Chair of the U.S. - India Senate Caucus.
Following his graduation from Providence College, Senator Dodd answered John F. Kennedy's call to service and joined the Peace Corps, serving in the Dominican Republic from 1966 to1968. Upon returning to the United States, Senator Dodd enlisted in the U.S. Army National Guard and Army Reserves. In 1972, he earned a law degree from the Brandeis School of Law at University Of Louisville.
Chris Dodd lives in Washington, D.C. and East Haddam, CT, with his wife, Jackie Clegg Dodd, and their daughters Grace and Christina.
For more information on Chris Dodd go to: http://chrisdodd.com/career/
GARY EICHTEN, MPR News Editor-at-Large, wore many hats during his 40-plus-year career at Minnesota Public Radio, including new director, special events producer and station manager. He served as host for Minnesota Public Radio's live, special events news coverage, and hosted all of the major news programs on Minnesota Public Radio, including Midday, which he hosted for more than 20 years.
A graduate of Saint John's University in Collegeville, Minnesota, Eichten began his career at Minnesota Public Radio as a student announcer at KSJR (Minnesota Public Radio's first station).
Among the honors Eichten has received during his career is the Corporation for Public Broadcasting award for best local news program. In 2007, he was inducted into the Pavek Museum of Broadcasting's Hall of Fame. Eichten was also awarded the prestigious 2011 Graven Award by the Premack Public Affairs Journalism Awards Board for his contribution to excellence in the journalism profession.
He currently serves on the Westminster Town Hall Forum advisory board.
Photo from the 8th Annual Eugene J. McCarthy Lecture featuring Dave Durenberger interviewed by Gary Eichten.
Memorials to the Eugene J. McCarthy Lecture may be made to:The Eugene J. McCarthy Lecture Fund