Fels Public Policy in Practice Speaker Series with Elizabeth Vale featuring Ambassador Joseph W. Westphal

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Thursday, December 8, 2022 - 6:00pm to 7:00pm
Event Information: 

Join us for this Public Policy in Practice event as we welcome Ambassador Joseph W. Westphal, Global Senior Fellow at the Joseph H. Lauder Institute of Management and International Studies at the Wharton School.

Ambassador Joseph W. Westphal is Global Senior Fellow at the Joseph H. Lauder Institute of Management and International Studies at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. Dr. Westphal is also a Senior Fellow at the Center for Leadership and Change Management at Wharton, Fellow at the National Academy of Public Administration and Non-Resident Fellow at the International Studies Center of the Catholic University of Chile. He has had a long and distinguished career in government and academia.

Dr. Westphal was the US Ambassador to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia from March 2014 to January 2017. Prior to this appointment, Dr. Westphal was the Under Secretary of the Army and its Chief Management Officer from 2009 to 2014. In this role, he was the lead on force management and the Army’s business operations. He also held the positions of assistant secretary of the Army (head of the Army Corps of Engineers) from 1998 to 2000 and acting secretary of the Army in 2001. 

Dr. Westphal began his career in 1975 as a professor of political science at Oklahoma State University and later served as a department head. In 2002, he became the Chancellor of the University of Maine System and Professor of Political Science. He also served as Director of the Tishman Environmental Center and Provost at the New School University in New York and adjunct professor at Georgetown University in Washington DC.

In government, he worked in both the House and Senate for more than twelve years. Dr. Westphal directed a bicameral-bipartisan organization called the Sunbelt Caucus. He was a staff member on the House Budget Committee and his last appointment was as a special assistant to Senator Thad Cochran (R-MS).

Dr. Westphal has held positions in the administrations of Presidents Carter, Reagan, Clinton, Bush, and Obama, working in the Department of the Interior, US Army Corps of Engineers, the Environmental Protection Agency, the Department of Defense, and the Department of State.

Ambassador Westphal received a BA from Adelphi University (1970), an MA from Oklahoma State University (1973), and his PhD from the University of Missouri-Columbia (1980). Born in Chile, he is married to Linda McMaster with four children and eight grandchildren.

About the series:

The Public Policy in Practice Series, led by Fels Distinguished Fellow Elizabeth Vale, is designed to provide students with a variety of perspectives and compelling personal narratives that will help them not only form their opinions on important issues but will also help shape their careers. This series is offered in conjunction with the Fels graduate Public Management course required of all Fels MPA and Executive MPA students. Fels is proud to offer these important conversations to the entire Penn community and members of the public.

Remarks begin promptly at 6 p.m.


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Fels Institute of Government

The Fels Institute of Government
3814 Walnut St. 
Philadelphia, PA 19104

(215) 898-7326