Whitehead School of Diplomacy and International Relations
Ban Ki-moon
United Nations Secretary-General
November 22, 2010

Ban Ki-moonMr. Ban addressed members of the Seton Hall community as crucial partners in uniting nations. He called for students’ help in delivering what the world needs, specifically citing the importance of combating climate change, reducing poverty and reinforcing human security.

Prior to his address, an honorary degree from Seton Hall was conferred upon the Secretary-General. He graciously received this degree “as a testament to this close ties between the United Nations and Seton Hall and the Whitehead School in particular.”

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Tony Blair
Former Prime Minister of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
February 3, 2009 

Tony BlairThroughout his candid and witty remarks, Mr. Blair stressed the importance of cooperation in addressing three of today's most pressing global challenges: the economy, the environment and security. “We must work together,” he said, "not just in traditional alliances, but in ones that bring together the developed and developing world." 

In addition to his comments on climate change and peace in the Middle East, Mr. Blair urged students to adopt a set of global values to include a belief in freedom, democracy, justice, and the power of community. By acting upon such values, Mr. Blair continued, we can drive our world forward. 

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Lech Walesa
Former President of Poland
December 1, 2005 

Lech WalesaSolidarity leader and the first democratically-elected President of Poland, Lech Walesa, addressed Seton Hall students, staff, alumni and friends in commemoration of the 25th anniversary of Solidarity, a grassroots union movement that brought an end to the communist government's control of Poland. President Walesa received an honorary doctoral degree given to him in absentia more than 23 years ago.  

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Mikhail Gorbachev
Former President of the Soviet Union
April 19, 2005

Mikhail GorbachevIn his address, Mr. Gorbachev addressed the challenges that have faced democracy throughout history and the potential roadblocks to its future success. Mr. Gorbachev noted that even victories come with challenges, referring to the situation in Iraq and the fall of communism during the Cold War. He discussed the need to take advantage of globalization, consider the interests of other countries, and address the problems of the environment and international security, as ways of helping democracy progress into the future.  

Shimon Peres

Former Prime Minister of Israel
September 29, 2004 

Mr. Peres focused much of his address on modern issues facing the world, issues such as the struggle between religion and science, and war in the Middle East. “It is not a war against Muslims,” he asserted. “It is a war for everybody, including the Muslims.” Throughout his address, Mr. Peres highlighted the importance he places on peace. In recognition of his lifetime commitment to this cause, Seton Hall awarded him with an honorary doctoral degree.  

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John Hume
Member of the Northern Ireland Parliament
March 18, 2004 

John Hume, Nobel Peace Prize laureate, parliament member and founder of Northern Ireland's Social Democratic and Labour Party, was presented with an honorary Doctor of Laws degree at Seton Hall University. In his address, Mr. Hume drew on his experiences in the Northern Ireland peace process. He began by telling students that his father once warned him never to get involved in politics because: "You can't beat the flag." Continuing, he described his personal reflections on the peace process over the last 30 years, including the Good Friday Peace Agreement, and the Hume-Adams talks. 

To read a transcript of Mr. Hume's address, click here.

Mohammad Khatami, with Cardinal Theodore McCarrick
President of the Islamic Republic of Iran, with Archbishop of Washington November 9, 2001 

The School of Diplomacy welcomed Iranian President Mohammad Khatami to campus as part of the culmination of the School's work on the UN Year of Dialogue Among Civilizations. It was President Khatami's first official U.S. visit. The School served as the coordinating Secretariat for the Dialogue Among Civilizations project, which culminated in a special session at the United Nations. President Khatami had called for a dialogue among civilizations since 1998, a year after being elected, urging that a new process be initiated to replace hostility and confrontation with discourse and understanding. Following President Khatami's proposal, the General Assembly unanimously proclaimed the year 2001 as the United Nation's Year of Dialogue Among Civilizations. 

To read a transcript of the event, click here.

Gil Carlos Rodriguez Iglesias
President of the Court of Justice of the European Communities
November 5, 2001 

Gil Carlos Rodríguez Iglesias spoke about European Union expansion and the prospects for global leadership. “The citizenship of the European Union,” stated Rodriguez Iglesias, “is another building block for global citizenship, and not simply a redefinition of identities, of circles of inclusion and exclusion, of us and them." Mr. Rodríguez Iglesias pondered whether the tragic events of September 11 were meant to prevent the emergence of global citizenship, and then stressed the importance of the Dialogue Among Civilizations as a means of promoting global citizenship.  

To read a transcript of Mr. Rodriguez's remarks, click here.

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Kofi Annan 
UN Secretary-General
February 5, 2001 

Kofi AnnanSecretary-General Kofi Annan's address inaugurated the 2001 United Nations Year of Dialogue Among Civilizations and recognized the School of Diplomacy for it's work as the coordinating Secretariat for the project. In his address, Secretary-General Annan emphasized that "Alongside an infinite diversity of cultures, there does exist one global civilization based on shared values of tolerance and freedom. The diversity of human cultures is something to be celebrated, not feared."  


Angelo Cardinal Sodano

Secretary of State of the Holy See
September 5, 2000 

Vatican Secretary of State Angelo Cardinal Sodano addressed Seton Hall students on the Holy See's presence in international affairs. Cardinal Sodano affirmed, "The lofty religious aim that inspires the Holy See's involvement in the international community, [is] that world affairs be imbued with the Gospel of the dignity of the person and the family, the gospel of harmony and peace, and, moreover, the Gospel of truth, justice, and love." 

To read a transcript of Cardinal Sodano's address, click here.

Her Royal Highness Maria Teresa
Grand Duchess of Luxembourg
October 19, 1999 

Grand Duchess Maria Teresa of Luxembourg focused her remarks to the Seton Hall community on microlending. By extending small loans to help the world's poorest nations create their own employment, microlending brings economic opportunity to low-income peoples, especially women. The Grand Duchess confirmed for students her belief that, "the most fundamental change brought about by microcredit is the social change that happens to be connected with gender in many developing countries. The role of women is undergoing considerable change." 

To read a transcript of HRH's remarks, click here.

Glafcos Clerides
President of the Republic of Cyprus
September 24, 1999 

In his address, President Clerides reaffirmed for students a statement he had made the day prior at the UN on resolving internal discord within a divided Cyprus. He told students: "If there is going to be a breakthrough for the solution of the Cyprus division issue, it will greatly depend on the international community: what pressure it would exercise to bring the two sides to the negotiating table and to help them find a solution to the problem. It is of vital importance that the international community plays a role." 

To read a transcript of President Clerides' remarks, click here.

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