The legacy of Frank Church—Boise native and U.S. senator from 1957 to 1981—comes alive again today at Boise State as attendees gather for the 29th annual Frank Church Conference on Public Affairs.
"Frank Church was a great Idahoan, but also a truly great statesman who practiced reasoned activism on behalf of peace," former U.S. Ambassador Ryan Crocker told Boise Weekly. "I hope that the conference gives us a time to reflect on how he was a giant in America when America needed a giant."
Crocker served an unprecedented six times as U.S. ambassador to Lebanon, Kuwait, Syria, Pakistan, Iraq and Afghanistan. Later today, he'll be the keynoter at the Church symposium.
"Some friends have said I've been ambassador six times to countries where no sane person would elect to spend a weekend," he said.
Today's luncheon speaker is Rajiv Chandrasekaran, senior correspondent and associate editor of the Washington Post. Chandrasekaran is the author of Little America: The War Within the War for Afghanistan.
Other speakers at the conference include Mohammad Ayatollahi Tabaar, an assistant professor at the George Bush School of Government and Public Service at Texas A&M University in College Station, Texas, and Shadman Bashir, international lawyer at the Center for Law and Religion Studies at Brigham Young University.