Norman J. Szydlowski SemGroup Corporation President and Chief Executive Officer
“The Future of Iraqi Oil”
Norman J. Szydlowski has served as a director and as president and chief executive officer of SemGroup® Corporation since November 2009. From January 2006 until January 2009, Szydlowski served as president and chief executive officer of Colonial Pipeline Company, an interstate common carrier of petroleum products.
From 2004 to 2005, he served as a senior consultant to the Iraqi Ministry of Oil in Baghdad on behalf of the U.S. Department of Defense, where he led an advisory team in the rehabilitation, infrastructure security and development of future strategy of the Iraqi oil sector.
From 2002 until 2004, he served as vice president of refining for Chevron Corporation (formerly ChevronTexaco), one of the world’s largest integrated energy companies. Szydlowski joined Chevron in 1981 and served in various capacities of increasing responsibility in sales, planning, supply chain management, refining and plant operations, transportation and construction engineering. Szydlowski graduated from Indiana University in Bloomington with a master’s degree in business administration. He also holds a bachelor of science degree in mechanical engineering from Kettering University.
Szydlowski graduated from Indiana University in Bloomington with a master’s degree in business administration. He also has a bachelor of science in mechanical engineering from Kettering University.
As the current president and chief executive officer of SemGroup, Szydlowski brings considerable management and leadership experience as well as extensive knowledge of the energy industry gained during his 29-year career in the energy business.
Former U.S. Ambassador Edwin G. Corr
“Promoting and Protecting U.S. Interests in our Changing and Challenging Hemisphere”
Ambassador (ret.) Edwin G. Corr was the U.S. Ambassador to Peru, Bolivia, and El Salvador, the Charge d’Affaires in Ecuador, and the Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for International Narcotics Control. He was appointed by both Democratic and Republican presidents. As a career Foreign Service Officer, he also served in Thailand and Mexico. He was a Peace Corps Director in Colombia.
Corr was a U.S. Marine Corps infantry officer. He was a program officer of the Inter-American Foundation (IAF) who worked with the “poorest of the poor.” He was a Professor of Political Science at the University of Oklahoma (OU), holding the Henry Bellmon Chair in Public Service for eight years. He was creator and director of the Energy Institute of the Americans (EIA) at the Sarkeys Energy Center at OU, Associate Director of OU’s International Program Center (IPC), and a Senior Research Fellow of the IPC.
Corr is the author, co-author, and co-editor of five books, and author of many book chapters and articles. He is the general editor of the University of Oklahoma Press Series in International and Security Affairs.
Ambassador Corr is the recipient of awards and honors from foreign governments and the U.S. government. The recognition that most pleased him was his selection to the Oklahoma Chapter of the National Wrestling Hall of Fame.
Currently, Ambassador Corr is a paid consultant, serves on boards of non-governmental organizations, and is a public speaker.
He is married to Susanne Springer Corr and has three daughters. The Corrs reside in Norman.
Dr. Bernard D. Cole (Captain, USN, retired), National War College
“China’s Strategic Priorities”
Dr. Bernard D. Cole (Captain, USN, Ret.) teaches courses on Sino-American Relations and Maritime Strategy. He has written numerous articles and five books: Gunboats and Marines: The U.S. Navy in China; The Great Wall at Sea: China’s Navy Enters the 21st Century; Oil for the Lamps of China: Beijing’s 21st Century Search for Energy; Taiwan’s Security: History and Prospects; and Sealanes and Pipelines: Energy Security in Asia.
Dr. Cole earned an A.B. in History from the University of North Carolina, an M.P.A. (National Security Affairs) from the University of Washington, and a Ph.D. in History from Auburn University.
He previously served 30 years as a Surface Warfare Officer in the Navy, all in the Pacific. Dr. Cole commanded a frigate, USS RATHBURNE, and Destroyer Squadron 35. He served as a Naval Gunfire Liaison Officer with the THIRD Marine Division in Vietnam, and as Special Assistant to the CNO for Expeditionary Warfare.
Matthew Hoh, Senior Fellow, Center for International Policy Director, Afghanistan Study Group
“Re-Thinking the U.S. War in Afghanistan”
Our December speaker is a major author of the recently-released Afghanistan Study Group Report and serves as the group’s director. Matthew Hoh is a former Marine Corps captain and former State Department appointee who served in both Iraq and Afghanistan. In 2009 he resigned from his appointment in Afghanistan in protest of the strategy being used in the War in Afghanistan and became an outspoken opponent of large U.S. troop deployment in the conflict.
Hoh studied at Tufts University and the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy. His career as a U.S. Marine included service during the Iraq War. He resigned his commission as a Captain and left the Marines in 2004 to become a civilian contractor in Iraq. At one point he supervised as many as five thousand Iraqi people and was responsible for distributing tens of millions of dollars to reconstruction projects. While much of the overall reconstruction effort was seen as a failure, his efforts were commended by the U.S. special inspector general for Iraq reconstruction. Hoh returned to the Marines in 2006 and deployed to Iraq. He received commendations before returning home in 2007.
Hoh resigned from his Department of State appointment serving in Zabul Province of Afghanistan in a four-page letter questioning why the war was being fought and “to what end”. He stated that the US presence was fueling the resistance movement in Afghanistan and providing a convenient villain for the 35-year-old cottage industry of warfare.
In April 2010 Hoh received the Ridenhour Prize for truth-telling.
Former U.S. Ambassador to Mexico James R. Jones
“The Mexican Drug Trade: Where is it Leading Mexico and the U.S.?”
The Honorable James R. Jones is currently a Senior Partner with the Washington law firm Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, focusing on international trade, investment and commerce, business-government relations and financial services. A former U.S. Ambassador and Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, Mr. Jones has also worked extensively with global distribution and marketing organizations targeting Latin America, Asia and the Middle East.
Prior to joining Manatt, he served as U.S. Ambassador to Mexico (1993-1997), where he was very successful in his leadership during the Mexican peso crisis, the passage and implementation of NAFTA and in developing new, cooperative efforts to combat drug trafficking. He also assisted U.S. businesses with commercial ventures in Mexico.
Mr. Jones’ previous experience also includes the position of President at Warnaco International, as well as Chairman and CEO of the American Stock Exchange in New York. During his tenure at AMEX, listings, revenues and market share increased. As a member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Oklahoma (1973-1987), he was Chairman of the House Budget Committee and a ranking Member of the House Ways and Means Committee, where he was active in tax, international trade, Social Security and health care policy.
Mr. Jones was only 28 years old when President Lyndon Johnson selected him as Appointments Secretary, the position presently entitled Chief of Staff. He was the youngest person in history to hold this position.
James R. Jones received a B.A. degree from the University of Oklahoma and a law degree from Georgetown.
Georgetown University Law Center, LL.B., 1964.
University of Oklahoma, B.A., 1961.
Steven C. Clemons, Senior Fellow, New America Foundation
“American Foreign Policy Needs Repair: Can the US Rebalance and Upgrade its Military and Diplomatic Skills?”
Steven Clemons directs the American Strategy Program at the New America Foundation, which aims to promote a new American internationalism that combines a tough-minded realism about America’s interests in the world with a pragmatic idealism about the kind of world order best suited to America’s democratic way of life. He is also a Senior Fellow at New America, and previously served as Executive Vice President.
Publisher of the popular political blog The Washington Note, Mr. Clemons is a long-term policy practitioner and entrepreneur in Washington, D.C. He has served as Executive Vice President of the Economic Strategy Institute, Senior Policy Advisor on Economic and International Affairs to Senator Jeff Bingaman (D-NM) and was the first Executive Director of the Nixon Center.
Prior to moving to Washington, Mr. Clemons served for seven years as Executive Director of the Japan America Society of Southern California, and co-founded with Chalmers Johnson the Japan Policy Research Institute, of which he is still Director. He is a Member of the Board of the Clarke Center at Dickinson College, a liberal arts college in Carlisle, Pa., as well as an Advisory Board Member of the C.V. Starr Center for the Study of the American Experience at Washington College in Chestertown, Md. He is also a Board Member of the Global Policy Innovations Program at the Carnegie Council on Ethics and International Affairs and a member of the board of the Citizens for Global Solutions Education Fund.
Mr. Clemons writes frequently on matters of foreign policy, defense, and international economic policy. His work has appeared in many of the major leading op-ed pages, journal, and magazines around the world.
Jacqueline H. Wilson, Senior Program Officer, Academy for Conflict Management and Peacebuilding U.S. Institute for Peace
“Peacebuilding in Sudan”
Jacqueline H. Wilson is a senior program officer in the Institute’s Academy for International Conflict Management and Peacebuilding. She joined the Institute with more than 20 years of service in the U.S. Air Force and Air Force Reserves. Her military career has included assignments in analysis, training and counterterrorism. She served overseas in the Middle East and Africa and was a Middle East foreign area officer.
Following the events of September 11, 2001, she was assigned to the U.S. embassy in Nairobi, serving in the defense attaché and Kenya-U.S. liaison offices. During this period, she augmented the U.S. delegation to the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development, and hosted Sudanese peace talks, contributing to the development of the verification and monitoring team. She was also an international observer for the Kenyan elections of 2002. Wilson has worked as a special assistant on the Maryland governor’s staff as well as a lobbyist in Annapolis. She has been an adjunct instructor for Chapman University and a reserve faculty member of the Joint Military Intelligence Training Center at the Defense Intelligence Agency.
She earned a master of science degree in strategic intelligence with Middle East emphasis from the Joint Military Intelligence College and holds a master’s in defense administration from Northern Michigan University. She is currently a doctoral student at Georgetown University, studying traditional conflict resolution in Sudan.
Dr. Bruce E. Bechtol, Jr., Angelo State University
“Not Going Away: The Persistent Challenge of North Korea”
Bruce E. Bechtol Jr. (Ph.D. Union Institute) is an Associate Professor of Political Science at Angelo State University. He was formerly on the faculty at the Marine Corps Command and Staff College (2005 – 2010) and the Air Command and Staff College (2003-2005).
Dr. Bechtol served as an adjunct Visiting Professor at the Korea University Graduate School of International Studies (2006-2007). He was an Intelligence Officer at the Defense Intelligence Agency from 1997 until 2003, eventually serving as the Senior Analyst for Northeast Asia in the Intelligence Directorate (J2) on the Joint Staff in the Pentagon. He is formerly the Editor of the Defense Intelligence Journal (2004-2005), and was on the Editorial Review Board of the East Asian Review (2005-2009). He serves on the Board of Directors of the International Council on Korean Studies, and the Council on U.S.-Korean Security Studies.
He is the author of Defiant Failed State: The North Korean Threat to International Security (Potomac Books: 2010), Red Rogue: The Persistent Challenge of North Korea (Potomac Books, 2007), and the editor of The Quest for a Unified Korea: Strategies for the Cultural and Interagency Process, (Quantico, VA: Marine Corps University Foundation, 2007). He is also the author of more than 20 articles in peer-reviewed journals.
Hon. John F Maisto, Retired U.S. Ambassador Chairman of the Board of Advisors, ACFR
“Transitions to Democracy and U.S. Policy–Never Easy!”
John F. Maisto is a former career diplomat with over three decades of service. He was Ambassador to the Organization of American States-OAS (2003-2006), Venezuela (1997-2000), and Nicaragua (1993-1996). From 2001 to 2003 he was Special Assistant to the President and Senior Director for Western Hemisphere Affairs at the National Security Council. He was Foreign Affairs Adviser at the U.S. Southern Command, Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Central American Affairs, Deputy Chief of Mission and Charge d’affaires in Panama, and Deputy U.S. Permanent Representative at the OAS. He headed the State Department’s Philippine Affairs office during the ”People Power” transition to democracy in 1986. He served in embassies in the Philippines, Costa Rica, Bolivia, and at U.S. Information Agency centers in Argentina and Bolivia.
He is a Director of the Miami-based U.S. Education Finance Group, and Board member of the Washington-based International Student Exchange Program (ISEP). He is also a board member of ECI, a Central American resort and retirement development company, and of the North American Center for Transborder Studies (NACTS) at Arizona State University. He serves on the Board of Advisers at the Inter American Dialogue. He consults, speaks and writes on U.S. policies in the Americas, democratic transitions, security, and other foreign affairs issues.
A native of Braddock, Pennsylvania, Ambassador Maisto has a Bachelor of Science in Foreign Service from Georgetown University and a Masters in Latin American History from San Carlos University, Guatemala.
Hon. Ambassador Carey Cavanaugh, Director, Patterson School of Diplomacy and International Commerce University of Kentucky
“Addressing Europe’s ‘Frozen’ and ‘Not-so-Frozen’ Conflicts”
Carey Cavanaugh is Director of the Patterson School of Diplomacy and International Commerce, and professor of diplomacy and conflict resolution, at the University of Kentucky. He returned to academia after a twenty-two year diplomatic career with the U.S. Department of State that focused on conflict resolution, political-military affairs and humanitarian issues.
In addition to Washington assignments in the State Department, Pentagon and on Capitol Hill, Ambassador Cavanaugh served in Berlin, Moscow, Tbilisi, Rome and Bern. In 1992, he established the first American Embassy to the new Republic of Georgia, serving as Charge d’Affaires. Under Presidents Clinton and Bush, Cavanaugh spearheaded or helped advance peace efforts involving Armenia, Azerbaijan, Cyprus, Georgia, Greece, Moldova, Tajikistan and Turkey. In 2000, he was confirmed by the U.S. Senate as Ambassador/Special Negotiator responsible for conflicts in Eurasia and Co-Chairman of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) Minsk Group. Later Cavanaugh was elected president of the State Department’s Senior Seminar and crisscrossed the globe as a team leader for the Office of the Inspector General. His final government assignment was foreign policy/ political advisor to U.S. Chief of Naval Operations Admiral Mike Mullen (the current Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff).
Ambassador Cavanaugh was born in Jacksonville, Florida and raised in Atlantic Beach. He majored in Russian at the University of Florida, but shifted to international affairs and Soviet and East European Studies at the University of Notre Dame, with additional graduate work at the US Army Russian Institute in Garmisch-Partenkirchen. He and his wife Laura have two sons: Chase, a sophomore at Notre Dame, and Keith, an eight grader at Lexington’s Sayre School. They live in Lexington, Kentucky.