Campus & Community

Former deputy secretary of defense named Belfer Lecturer

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John White, former U.S. deputy secretary of defense, has been named the Robert and Renée Belfer Lecturer at the Kennedy School of Government (KSG). White has served as a lecturer in public policy at KSG since 1998.

The Belfer Lectureship is awarded to a scholar who demonstrates a distinguished contribution within the academic community and as a policy practitioner. This is the second time the lectureship has been awarded. The previous recipient was Robert Blackwill, former ambassador to India and deputy national security adviser to President George W. Bush. He also served as a lecturer at KSG.

In addition to teaching, White continues to contribute to the policy debate by co-chairing a project on military transformation with another former deputy secretary of defense, John Deutch, and as a member of the Department of Defense Advisory Committee on Military Compensation.

“The Kennedy School distinguishes itself through the combination of academic excellence and policy impact. The Robert and Renée Belfer Lectureship is the embodiment of this mission, and John White’s experience in both areas demonstrates the innovation that can result from the continued fusion of scholarship and practice,” said Stephen M. Walt, academic dean of the Kennedy School.

“I am honored to be named the Robert and Renée Belfer Lecturer and thank the selection committee, as well as the Belfers, for their generosity,” said White. “It is imperative that students benefit from the vast experience of both policymakers and scholars, and this position demonstrates the vision of the Belfers in turning this central focus of the Kennedy School into a reality,” he concluded.