Nobel Peace Prize-winner and former Vice President of Egypt Mohamed ElBaradei will help celebrate 50 years of the inception of the Adlai E. Stevenson Memorial Lecture.
A pro-democracy leader and advocate of nuclear disarmament, ElBaradei will give a talk titled “Preventing a Nuclear Nightmare” at 7 p.m. Wednesday, September 30, at the Center for Performing Arts at Illinois State University. A reception will follow the talk. The event is free and open to the public.
“We’re pleased to introduce this world leader to the people of McLean County,” said Executive Director of the McLean County Museum of History Greg Koos, who also serves a member of the Stevenson Lecture Series Board of Directors. “Mr. ElBaradei is certainly a fitting guest to mark the 50th anniversary of the inception of this prestigious lecture series.”
The Stevenson Lecture Series, initiated in 1965 as a memorial to the political leader and Chief U.S. Delegate to the United Nations Adlai E. Stevenson II, is co-hosted by Illinois Wesleyan University and Illinois State University.
ElBaradei is a prominent voice for peace, freedom, and democracy in the Arab and Islamic worlds. He played a leadership role in the Arab Spring of 2011, and was asked to take on the responsibility of interim vice president of Egypt, a position from which he recently resigned.
A former director general of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) from December 1997 until November 2009, ElBaradei and the IAEA were jointly awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in October 2005 “for their efforts to prevent nuclear energy from being used for military purposes and to ensure that nuclear energy for peaceful purposes is used in the safest possible way.” The Nobel committee referred to him as an “unafraid advocate” of new measures to strengthen the nuclear non-proliferation regime.
ElBaradei began his career in the Egyptian Diplomatic Service in 1964. Serving in the Permanent Missions of Egypt to the United Nations in New York and Geneva, he took charge of political, legal, and arms control issues. During this period, ElBaradei worked with many international and regional organizations, including the United Nations General Assembly, the United Nations Security Council, the Conference on Disarmament, the United Nations Conference on the Law of the Sea, the International Labour Organization, the World Health Organization, the Commission on Human Rights, the Organization of African Unity, and the League of Arab States.
From 1974 to 1978, ElBaradei was a special assistant to the foreign minister of Egypt, in which capacity he took part in various presidential and ministerial delegations. He was a member of the negotiating team that led to the conclusion of the disengagement agreements between Egypt and Israel.
In 1980, he left the Diplomatic Service to join the United Nations and became a senior fellow in charge of the International Law Program at the United Nations Institute for Training and Research. From 1981 to 1987, he was also an adjunct professor of international law at the New York University School of Law.
Born in Cairo, Egypt, in 1942, ElBaradei earned a bachelor’s degree in law in 1962 at the University of Cairo, and a doctorate in international law at New York University School of Law in 1974.
The talk is part of The Speaker Series of Illinois State University, which seeks to bring innovative and enlightening speakers to the campus with the aim of providing the community with a platform to foster dialogue, cultivate enriching ideas, and continue an appreciation of learning as an active and lifelong process.
More information on all speakers can be found on the Speaker Series website.