(from l to r:) Professors Urska Velikonja and Michael Van Alstine, Secretary Cohen and Dean Haddon.
Former U.S. Secretary of Defense William S. Cohen addressed almost 200 members of the Maryland Carey Law community Thursday, September 27, as part of the second annual Dean's Convocation. Cohen discussed the foreign policy implications of the 2012 presidential election in his remarks and in an informal follow-up conversation with Dean Phoebe A. Haddon, law school faculty and the audience.
The Convocation recognized the outstanding professional work of four Maryland Carey Law alumni; it also launched a year-long celebration of the tenth anniversary of the Nathan Patz Law Center.
The event included the screening of a special anniversary video and an alumni awards ceremony honoring former US Senator Joseph Tydings '53; philanthropist Lois K. Macht '56; civil rights lawyer Beth Pepper '83 and commercial litigator Michael Siri '01.
Following the Secretary's remarks, UM Carey Law Professors Michael Van Alstine and Urska Velikonja joined Dean Haddon and the audience for a discussion that covered everything from the role of smart phones and social networking web sites in overturning governments to developing legal systems in emerging democracies, economic growth in China and the need for bipartisan compromise and greater civility in American politcal rhetoric.
Secretary Cohen is chairman and CEO of The Cohen Group, which he founded in 2001 to help multinational clients overseas. After serving as a Republican senator and congressman from Maine, he was recruited by President Bill Clinton to lead the Defense Department in 1996, the first time in recent history a member of an opposing political party was asked to serve in a president's cabinet. Secretary Cohen has served on the board of the Council on Foreign Relations as well as on numerous study groups and committees at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, the School for Advanced International Studies and the Brookings Institute.