Below is the invitation to the lecture series named after our own Paul Offner:

You are cordially invited to the 2011 Paul Offner Lecture hosted by the Urban Institute.

 Guest Lecturers: Former Congressmen Dave Obey and Steve Gunderson,


Challenges for Public Leadership in Today’s World

 Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Noon-1:15 p.m. 



To attend this Washington, D.C., event, go to http://www.urban.orgXXXX, e-mail, or call (202) 261-5709.

Scholar, state legislator, congressional adviser, and educator, the late Paul Offner left a special legacy of applying solid, evidence-driven research to public policy development, especially for society’s disadvantaged. Offner’s dedication to public service is celebrated with an annual lecture sponsored by the Urban Institute and the University of Wisconsin–Madison’s La Follette School of Public Affairs.  For more information on the lecture go to

The 2011 lecturers will be the distinguished Dave Obey, one of the longest-serving chairmen of the US House of Representatives Appropriations Committee and a 42 year veteran of the House, and Steve Gunderson, former Congressional colleague, past CEO of the Council on Foundations, and a current member of the President’s Commission on White House Fellows.  Obey and Gunderson will address the challenges for public leadership in today’s world from the vantage point of their long political careers in Congress and Wisconsin state government, as colleagues, and as members of different political parties.


Obey’s book, Raising Hell for Justice , The Washington Battles of a Heartland Progressive, is thought to be, according to Thomas E. Mann the Brookings Institution, “…a powerful and enlightening political memoir by one of America's all-time great legislators. Obey is one of a vanishing breed in Congress whose entire career in public life has been committed to both advancing a principled agenda and working constructively with colleagues on both sides of the aisle to hammer out agreements that advance that agenda… .His compelling memoir demonstrates how ennobling and satisfying a career in the first branch of government can be.   

Gunderson, after nearly a twenty year political career with leadership in areas of agriculture, employment policy, and human rights, has tackled challenges in private sector management and philanthropy.  While at The Greystone Group he coauthored an important work on employment policy, The Jobs Revolution: Changing How America Works. And as the CEO of The Council on Foundations he launched the foundation’s Global Philanthropy Leadership Initiative, significantly expanding and enhancing the foundation’s leadership role in government relations as the public policy voice of philanthropy toward the public good. .


At the Urban Institute

2100 M Street N.W., 5th Floor, Washington, D.C.

Lunch will be provided at 11:30 a.m.

The forum begins promptly at noon.