World War II conference to feature Brokaw, Foss at university April 16 Members of the World War II generation will address issues of citizenship, leadership and character with their baby boomer counterparts at a conference scheduled for Friday, April 16 at The University of South Dakota.
The World War II conference, hosted by the W.O. Farber Center for Civic Leadership, is titled "Citizenship, Leadership and Character: The WWII Generation to the Baby Boomers."
Featuring NBC Nightly News managing editor Tom Brokaw and former South Dakota Governor Joe Foss, the conference will include two major addresses and two panel discussions in Slagle Hall Auditorium.
Brokaw, author of the recent best selling book, The Greatest Generation, will speak at 1 p.m. Foss, a World War II Marine air (pilot) ace and Medal of Honor winner, will speak at 7 p.m. Both Brokaw and Foss are graduates of USD.
"In many ways, World War II represented the greatest test of citizenship, leadership and character in this century," said USD Professor William D. Richardson, director of the W.O. Farber Center for Civic Leadership. "Since the Farber Center is most concerned with the promotion of civic leadership, a conversation between appropriate representatives of these two generations seemed to hold considerable promise."
A panel discussion, "The Military: Then and Now," will begin at 9 a.m. This session will be devoted to a roundtable discussion about "Citizenship, Leadership and Character" among veterans from World War II, the Korean War, Vietnam, the Gulf War, current active duty personnel and scholars.
Retired Lt. Col. William Sawyer of Orlando, FL a World War II veteran of the U.S. Air Force, will serve as moderator.
Other participants include:
* Retired General Neal Creighton, Wheaton, IL.
* Retired General William A. Stofft, Custer.
* Retired Brigadier General Albine Irzyk, West Palm Beach, FL.
* Retired Major Steven L. Brown, Atlanta, GA.
* Col. Donald Selvage, New Orleans, LA.
* Paul Fussell, Philadelphia, PA.
* Retired Admiral Wayne Rickman, Aiken, SC.
* Richard Charles, Atlanta, GA.
* Leonard Bruguier, Vermillion.
* Retired Col. Barney Oldfield, Los Angeles, CA.
* Richard Cox, Buffalo, NY.
* Howard "Hod" Nielson, Yankton, who was in the Army Air Corps in World War II, is a sportswriter/columnist for the Yankton Press & Dakotan.
* Eldon Nygaard, Vermillion, was a member of the U.S. Army in the Vietnam War. He is a faculty member at USD.
* Steven Bucklin, Vermillion, is a USD history professor. As a member of the American Legion he has worked on veterans' issues in Iowa and South Dakota. His book, From Cold War to Gulf War: The South Dakota National Guard, 1945-2000 will be released in June 2000.
The second session of the conference, "Elected Office: Then and Now," will feature a discussion with former elected officials of the World War II generation, their contemporary counterparts from state, local and federal levels, as well as scholars.
This roundtable will focus on how elective office has been affected by changes that have occurred in the areas of citizenship, leadership and character since World War II.
Participants will include:
* Professor Emeritus of Political Science William O. Farber, Vermillion. A prolific scholar and renowned teacher, he served as a warrant officer in the U.S. Army Air Corps during World War II.
* James G. Abourezk, Sioux Falls, is a former U.S. Senator from South Dakota.
* Richard E. "Dick" Brown, Sioux Falls, a member of the South Dakota House of Representatives. He was a first lieutenant for the U.S. Army.
* Judy Clark, Vermillion, is a member of the South Dakota House of Representatives.
* Casey Murschel is a member of the Sioux Falls City Council.
* Bill Radigan is the Mayor of Vermillion.
* Orville B. Smidt, Brookings, is a member of the South Dakota House of Representatives where he is assistant majority leader. Smidt, a retired colonel in the U.S. Army was a master army aviator with over 2,500 flight hours including 400 during the Vietnam War.
Student leaders from across the state will be invited to participate in both roundtables. All events are free and open to the public.
The World War II Conference is sponsored by the W.O. Farber Center for Civic Leadership, the USD Program Council, School of Business and the Burke-Bankwest Lecture Series.