Union University recently announced Donald Rumsfeld, former United States Secretary of Defense, will headline the 19th annual Scholarship Banquet, Union’s biggest fundraising event of the year.
Rumsfeld served as the 21st Secretary of Defense under President George W. Bush and the 13th Secretary of Defense under President Gerald R. Ford. Rumsfeld is both the youngest and the second oldest Secretary of Defense in United States history.
Additionally, Rumsfeld spent three terms as a congressman from Illinois and has served as the Director of the Office of Economic Opportunity, Counselor to the President, Permanent Representative to NATO, White House Chief of Staff and chief executive officer of two Fortune 500 companies.
He is best known for directing the Department of Defense into the global war on terror following the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks during his second tenure as Defense Secretary. Rumsfeld’s work under President George W. Bush was characterized by a series of major changes in the Department of Defense intended to modernize the military for the 21st century.
Rumsfeld has been especially noted for his outspokenness and quick wit during his tenure as secretary of defense.
He released an autobiography in 2011 titled “Known and Unknown: A Memoir.”
The university’s selection of Rumsfeld as keynote speaker for their most important fundraiser of the year has received backlash in the community, generating negative comments on social media due to his involvement in controversial defense issues.
Union’s annual Scholarship Banquet holds a reputation for hosting exemplary speakers in West Tennessee, with previous speakers including Margaret Thatcher, George H. W. Bush, Mikhail Gorbachev, Laura Bush, Tony Blair, Mike Huckabee, Ben Carson and others.
The 19th annual Scholarship Banquet will be held Oct. 4 at the Carl Perkins Civic Center in downtown Jackson at 6:30 p.m. For information regarding tickets or sponsorship, contact the Office of Institutional Advancement at (731) 661-5050 or visit www.uu.edu/events/scholarshipbanquet.