Senator Richard Lugar: a diplomatic champion

Photo from NPR

 

Senator Richard Lugar personified an era when US senators such as “Scoop” Jackson, Howard Baker and Pat Moynihan worked across party lines and were true global statesmen. Lugar had been an effective mayor of Indianapolis, and brought a practical approach to everything he did — including foreign policy. His goal was always to figure out what was in America’s national interests, not his own or his political party.

Through his work in Central America, Asia, Europe and his nuclear proliferation initiative with Senator Sam Nunn, he worked tirelessly for a more secure and prosperous world. Senator Lugar was a champion of robust public diplomacy efforts and was a strong supporter of the cornerstone program of the US State Department to engage the next generation: the International Visitor Leadership Program, which Meridian is proud to partner on.

As a true friend to international diplomats, Lugar was always willing to meet with representatives from other countries — both in Washington, D.C. and abroad — to gain a better understanding of their perspectives. He knew that listening is a powerful tool diplomacy. Senator Lugar was well known to Meridian and frequently shared his perspective with us; he will be missed.