Iowa State University

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News Service

News Service:

Annette Hacker, manager,
(515) 294-3720

Office: (515) 294-4777

10-05-04

Contacts:

Pat Miller, Lectures, 515-294-9935

Annette Hacker, News Service, 515-294-3720

Borlaug lecture is Oct. 13

AMES, Iowa -- Catherine Bertini, who transformed the United Nations' World Food Programme into the world's largest humanitarian relief organization, will present the third annual Norman Borlaug Lecture at Iowa State on Oct. 13.

The lecture, "How We Made a Difference With Food Aid," will be held at 8 p.m. in the Memorial Union Sun Room. A student poster competition and reception will be held at 7 p.m. in the Great Hall. All events are free and open to the public.

Bertini was the first woman and the first American to serve as executive director of the World Food Programme, a position she held from 1992 to 2002. She is now the United Nations Under Secretary General for Management.

Bertini is credited with overcoming significant obstacles to get food aid to more than 700 million desperately hungry people in remote locations. This includes efforts to end famine in North Korea, avert starvation in Afghanistan and ensure emergency food relief during the crises in Bosnia and Kosovo. In 2000, Bertini led the 8,000-member World Food Programme staff in getting food to 16 million people in the drought-ravaged Horn of Africa.

She was named the World Food Prize Laureate in 2003.

Bertini received a bachelor's degree in 1971 from the State University of New York, Albany. In her early career, she worked for then-New York Gov. Nelson Rockefeller, made an unsuccessful bid for a Congressional seat from Illinois, and held a fellowship at Harvard University's John F. Kennedy Institute of Politics. She was appointed to a position in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services by President Ronald Reagan. In 1989, Bertini was nominated to be Assistant Secretary of Agriculture by President George Bush. While at USDA, she helped to increase efficiency in the Food Stamp program, expanded the number of schools with breakfast programs, and oversaw the agency which created the Food Guide Pyramid.

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