POSITIVE RSVP ONLINE ONLY: http://belfercenter.ksg.harvard.edu/events/ridge.html

The Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs will host a Directors' Lunch with Tom Ridge on Monday, April 20th in the Belfer Center Library (L369).

Following the tragic events of September 11th, 2001, Thomas J. Ridge became the nation's first Assistant to the President for Homeland Security and later the country's first Secretary of Homeland Security, a fourth call to public service for the former soldier, congressman and governor of Pennsylvania. During his tenure, Secretary Ridge's leadership and vision were instrumental in creating a border-centric agency that developed and coordinated a comprehensive national strategy to strengthen protections against terrorist threats and attacks in the United States.

Before that service, Secretary Ridge was twice elected governor of Pennsylvania. His aggressive technology strategy helped fuel the state's advancements in economic development, job growth, education, health care and environmental protection.

Born in Pittsburgh's Steel Valley, Secretary Ridge was raised in a working-class family. He later earned a scholarship to Harvard, graduating with honors in 1967. After his first year at The Dickinson School of Law, he was drafted into the U.S. Army, where he served as an infantry staff sergeant in Vietnam, earning the Bronze Star for Valor, the Combat Infantry Badge and the Vietnamese Cross of Gallantry. After returning to Pennsylvania and to Dickinson, he earned his law degree and, later, became one of the first Vietnam combat veterans elected to the U.S. House of Representatives, where he served six terms.

Secretary Ridge now serves as the president and CEO of Ridge Global, an international strategic advisory firm, headquartered in Washington, DC. He also serves on public and private boards, including the Institute for Defense Analyses and the Center for the Study of the Presidency and Congress, and is currently the chairman of the National Organization on Disability and national co-chairman of the Flight 93 Memorial Fundraising Campaign.

RSVP REQUIRED! http://belfercenter.ksg.harvard.edu/events/ridge.html

This event will be off the record: