John Glenn to Open UB Distinguished Speakers Series

By Arthur Page

Release Date: September 29, 2000

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Former U.S. senator and astronaut John Glenn will open UB's 2000-01 Distinguished Speakers Series with a lecture on Oct. 11.

BUFFALO, N.Y. -- Former U.S. senator and astronaut John Glenn will kick off the 2000-01 Distinguished Speakers Series at the University at Buffalo with a lecture at 8 p.m. Oct. 11 in Alumni Arena on the North (Amherst) Campus.

The Distinguished Speakers Series is presented by UB and the Don Davis Auto World Lectureship Fund. Series sponsor is the Student Association. The Division of Student Affairs is sponsoring the Glenn lecture.

The series will continue with lectures by best-selling author Mary Higgins Clark on Nov. 16, basketball broadcaster Dick Vitale on Dec. 5 and Pulitzer Prize-winning historian Doris Kearns Goodwin on April 26, 2001.

Glenn became a national hero in 1962 when he climbed into the tiny Mercury space capsule, was launched into space and circled the Earth three times.

When President John Kennedy refused to let NASA send Glenn back into space -- he considered him to be too valuable as a national hero -- Glenn left NASA for a career in the private sector as an international executive in the cola industry.

Glenn re-entered public life in 1974 when he was elected to the U.S. Senate. He served for 24 years for his home state of Ohio.

He returned to space in 1998, becoming -- at age 77 -- the oldest man ever to fly in space.

He currently heads the John Glenn Institute for Public Service and Public Policy at Ohio State University.

Glenn published his autobiography, "John Glenn: A Memoir," in 1999. Earlier this year, he received the prestigious Jefferson Award from the American Institute of Public Service.

Series subscriptions and tickets to individual lectures can be purchased at the Center for the Arts Ticket Office, 645-ARTS. Tickets to individual lectures also may be purchased at any TicketMaster location or by calling TicketMaster at 852-5000. Groups of 10 or more receive a discount on ticket purchases; call 645-6147 ext. 228 for further information.