Melitta J. Cutright
Powell, who served as U.S. Secretary of State under President George W. Bush, is the founder of America’s Promise, a partnership of businesses, youth-focused organizations and community leaders dedicated to the wellbeing of youth. He will deliver the address during the convention’s opening plenary session on Wednesday, July 8, at the Minneapolis Convention Center.
“Colin Powell is a hero to many, and an outstanding advocate for children and youth,” said Albert Brandel, president of Lions Clubs International. “His work has helped bring the development and support of our youth to the forefront, and his efforts through America’s Promise directly contribute to the well-being of young people everywhere.”
Powell began his career in the military serving as an adviser during the Vietnam conflict. The following years saw Powell ascend in military rank before assuming duties as U.S. National Security Advisor under President Ronald Regan in 1987. Powell achieved the rank of General in 1989 and served during the Gulf War as Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff – the highest military position in the department of defense – until 1993. Powell then served as Secretary of State under President Bush from 2001 to 2005.
Powell, a two-time recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom, has been recognized with the Presidential Citizens Medal, the Congressional Gold Medal, the Secretary of State Distinguished Service Medal and the Secretary of Energy Distinguished Service Medal. His best-selling autobiography, “My American Journey,” was published in 1995. Powell holds honorary degrees from universities and colleges across the United States.
Lions Clubs International is the world’s largest service club organization with 1.35 million members in more than 46,000 clubs in 206 countries and geographic areas. In addition to its efforts toward conquering blindness, the organization has made a strong commitment to community service and helping youth throughout the world. To learn more about Lions Clubs International, visit www.lionsclubs.org.