Fulbright Forum – Celebrating 75 Years: History and impact of the Fulbright Program

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Date(s) - 08/03/21
12:00 pm - 1:30 pm


August 1, 1946, U.S. President Harry Truman signed a relatively inconspicuous amendment to the Surplus Property Act of 1944 into law. It was known as “The Fulbright Act.” In commemoration of the signing of the Act, the Fulbright Association invites you to join a conversation featuring an international panel of Fulbright commission representatives and researchers highlighting key moments from the origins of the Fulbright exchange. The panel will also feature special guests from the University of Arkansas Libraries, who will highlight items from a new project that digitized key documents and images from the program. Join us to learn about the history and fascinating archival documents of the last seventy-five years and to consider how the program’s history can shape its trajectory for the twenty-first century.

Lori Birrell

Dr. Lori Birrell serves as the Associate Dean for the Special Collections Division at the University of Arkansas Libraries. She is responsible for stewarding archival and print collections in support of the University’s research and learning mission. Birrell’s research focuses on leadership skill development in academic libraries and she’s the author of the 2020 book Developing the Next Generation of Library Leaders. Birrell holds a Doctorate in Educational Leadership from the University of Rochester, a Masters of Library and Information Science from Simmons University, a Masters of History from the University of Massachusetts, and a Bachelor’s degree from Mount Holyoke College.


J. Laurence Hare

J. Laurence Hare is Associate Professor and Chair of the Department of History at the University of Arkansas. A specialist in modern German and Scandinavian history, Hare is the author of Excavating Nations: Archaeology, Museums, and the German-Danish Borderlands (University of Toronto Press, 2015), and Essential Skills for Historians: A Practical Guide for Researching the Past (Bloomsbury, 2020). Hare’s research has been supported by a German Chancellor Fellowship from the Alexander-von-Humboldt Foundation and recognized with the Aurora Borealis Prize from the Society for the Advancement of Scandinavian Study.


Lonnie Johnson

Lonnie R. Johnson, a native of Minnesota, has lived and worked in Vienna, Austria in international education for over forty years and served as the executive director of the Austrian Fulbright Commission from 1997 until his retirement in 2019.  The author of numerous books and articles on Central European history, his work in recent years has focused on the history of the Fulbright Program for a book with the working title Remembering and Forgetting Fulbright: The Remarkable History of the Fulbright Program, 1946-1971 (University of Arkansas Press).  He has done research numerous times in the University of Arkansas Library’s special collections.


Su-Chun Li

Su-Chun Li served for thirty years as a Taiwanese career diplomat with​​ extensive experience in offices of the Taiwan central government, including the Presidential Office, the Government Information Office, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and the Ministry of Science and Technology. She recently completed a Ph.D. in Asia-Pacific Studies with a focus on public diplomacy and international educational exchange. Her dissertation explored the history of the Fulbright Program in Taiwan between 1947 and 2019.

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2 Responses

  1. Rob Leflar

    I will be delighted to attend, if I can return from Atlanta in time. (I have a 4:15 pm appointment there on July 2.)

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