November 8 – Thinking Strategically About America’s Future

Col. F. William Smullen, Director, National Security Studies, Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs

DATE: November 8, 2013
TIME: 7:30 AM
LOCATION: Bangor Public Library

Download Flyer

Abstract: To be successful, any nation traveling on its road of life must have achievable objectives and sound strategic thinking. It requires having a game plan for accomplishing goals through the use of available resources and delivery systems to influence things for the better. Given that uncertainty is our contemporary adversary at the national level, we will need a sound grand strategy to advance America’s vital national interests in the years ahead. This will not be made any easier given certain megatrends or conditions likely to occur by the year 2030. Although the future yields uncertainty, it offers promise if our foreign policies decisions are wise and prudent. This talk will outline the characteristics of an effective grand strategy and offer some visionary advice on leading America during these unprecedented times.

About the speaker: Bill Smullen was appointed as the Director of National Security Studies (NSS) at the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs in June of 2003. He is also Maxwell’s Senior Fellow in National Security and a member of the faculty of Syracuse University’s S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications as a Professor of Public Relations.

Prior to his appointment at Syracuse University, he was the Chief of Staff to Secretary of State Colin L. Powell and of the U.S. Department of State beginning in January 2001. As principal advisor to the Secretary, he was responsible for monitoring and evaluating the formulation and implementation of departmental policies. He was also involved in the planning and development of concept strategy associated with foreign policy matters.

A professional soldier for 30 years, he retired from the U.S. Army in 1993. His last assignment on active duty was Special Assistant to the eleventh and twelfth Chairmen of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Admiral William J. Crowe, Jr., and General Colin L. Powell. Upon leaving active duty, he became the Executive Assistant to General Powell, assisting with the writing and promotion of his best-selling autobiography, “My American Journey,” published in 1995. From 1993 to 2001 he had daily responsibility for managing the General’s private office and professional activities. Beginning in 1997 he doubled his responsibilities by becoming the Chief of Staff for America’s Promise—The Alliance for Youth, which General Powell chaired from May 1997 to January 2001.

Col. with Gen. PowellAmong his accomplishments, he has been elected to Syracuse University’s S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications Hall of Fame, the University of Maine ROTC Hall of Fame, and was chosen for the University of Maine Alumni Career Award in 2007, which is the highest honor presented by the University of Maine Alumni Association. In 2005, he was named to Strathmore’s “Who’s Who,” as one who has demonstrated leadership and achievement in his occupation and profession.