Sen. Johnson to keynote first MRI lecture at USD

Sen. Johnson to keynote first MRI lecture at USD Senator Tim Johnson will be the keynote speaker for the inaugural lecture of the Missouri River Institute (MRI) Special Lecture Series, Monday, Nov. 15 at 7:30 p.m. in Farber Hall of Old Main at The University of South Dakota.

"We're pleased to have Senator Johnson speaking to the University community and appreciate his continuing interest in the resources of the Missouri basin and Spirit Mound restoration," said USD Professor Bruce A. Barton, co-director of the Institute. "We certainly appreciate his taking the time to come to USD, knowing how active his schedule must be."

Johnson's lecture is the first on-campus event sponsored by the MRI, which was created at USD during the summer of 1999. Barton and Anthropology Professor Brian L. Molyneaux assumed co-director duties under the direction of Dean of Research and Graduate Education Royce C. Engstrom.

According to Barton, the mission of the Institute is to develop and promote scholarly research, education, and public awareness related to the natural and cultural resources of the Missouri River basin. "Our goal is to have the MRI become a national focal point for Missouri River research and educational activities for the future."

Specific goals of the MRI include developing educational opportunities at all levels in subjects focusing on the Missouri River basin, creating an outreach program devoted to the Missouri River's resources for the academic community and the public, and supporting and promoting the ethnic heritage of the original native inhabitants and later settlers along the river, among others.

Upcoming lectures in 2000 will feature Dr. Gary Moulton of the University of Nebraska and Dr. Charles R. Berry, Jr. of South Dakota State University.

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