Rep. Todd Tiahrt will speak on Iraq war at USD

Rep. Todd Tiahrt will speak on Iraq war at USD Kansas Congressman and Vermillion native Todd Tiahrt will present a lecture entitled "Operation Iraqi Freedom: Justified or Unnecessary?" at 4 p.m. on Feb. 17 in Farber Hall.

Congressman Tiahrt (R-KS), is a graduate of Vermillion High School. In 1995 he began serving the 4th District of Kansas in Congress and was appointed to the powerful House Appropriations Committee in 1997. Tiahrt also serves as a Deputy Majority Whip.

Tiahrt grew up on his family's farm where, at a young age, he learned the values of hard work and frugality. Before his service in Congress, Tiahrt was employed with the Boeing Company in Wichita for nearly 14 years, where he worked on various aerospace projects including the Space Station, Air Force One and the Comanche Helicopter.

Tiahrt attended South Dakota School of Mines and Technology and later transferred to Evangel College where he graduated and met his wife Vicki. Tiahrt went on to earn his MBA from Southwest Missouri State. Todd and Vicki have three children, Jessica, John and Luke.

The speech is sponsored by the W.O. Farber Center for Civic Leadership at The University of South Dakota. The Farber Center annually hosts Farber Forums, which are programs designed to offer students and the public insight into national and state politics, campaigns and elections, public administration, and international relations.

The Farber Center was established in the fall of 1997 by the South Dakota Board of Regents as a Center of Excellence, and is housed within the Political Science Department at USD. The mission of the center is to prepare students and help communities to face difficult public problems in a shared manner consistent with constitutional values.

The director of the center is William D. Richardson, a political scientist who has published extensively on the subject of character and leadership. Past speakers at Farber Forums have included Colin Powell, President Gerald Ford, Solicitor General Kenneth Starr and USD alumnus Tom Brokaw.

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