Constitution Day 2017: Eric Holder
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Constitution Day 2017: Eric Holder

♪♪ (applause) Well good afternoon. My name is John Pistole.
I’m the president of Anderson University and it’s a joy to welcome you all here today. as we welcome our distinguished guest,
the former Attorney General of the United States, Eric Holder.
Thank you Mr. Holder for being here. Glad to be here.
Shouldn’t you all be in class? (Laughter) So just remember, you like Eric.
I got you out of class. (Laughter) So, today is part of our recognition
of Constitution Day going back – oh –
a few hundred years. And, even though it’s not the day
of the signing of the constitution, September 17th was, but we are recognizing that as
a former senator, Harry Byrd encouraged all students
that receive any federal money, in a 2004 bill.
So since we get a little bit of federal money, we thought that would be a good thing. Now, when we worked out
the date to come here, we didn’t realize we’d be celebrating –
or commemorating – Constitution Day, so just as awareness of that. So there’s a lot of things we want to do
in the time we have this afternoon. One of the things we’ll do
is we’ll have a dialogue I’ll ask some questions
and he can either answer them or do whatever he wants with them, obviously,
since he’s the guest. (laughter) But if you have questions,
we’re going to leave 10 or 15 minutes at the end. We need to wrap up by about 2:45,
but if you have questions, ah, you should have a note card
or if you want something, write down that question
and then pass them to the end and then we’ll have folks pick those up
and then Dr. Michael Frank and Jan Bell, who are coordinating – organizing this,
will pick those up and give those to me and then – obviously we won’t have time
to answer all of those questions – but they’ll vet those questions
and we’ll go from there. So, with that, again, welcome. So, Eric Holder, just in terms
of a little bit of background, if I read his entire bio,
that would take the entire 45 minutes, so we’re not going to do that. But he is the third longest serving
Attorney General in U.S. history. And obviously not only the first African American
Attorney General which everybody knows, he was also the first African American
Deputy Attorney General which is frankly really the person
running the Department of Justice, but he know that so, uh, (laughter) And, he was also the first African American
U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia where he had also been
a Superior Court Judge. So he’s been – he’s been nominated
and either confirmed by the Senate, but nominated by three different administrations –
Republican, Democrat. I had the privilege of working with him
several years and just found him to be
a great public servant. And so lots of other things,
Columbia undergrad, Cloumbia Law School. 1976 honors intern at Department of Justice – public integrity I believe – with some public corruption cases. So just a long distinguished career
of public service. So with that, why don’t you tell us a little bit about
your sense of public service, some of the challenges and opportunities you’ve seen over your decades of service. You know it’s, first, it’s great
to be here at Anderson. You have a great President, a wonderful person. Thank you.
(applause) John and I have worked on some
really interesting, tough things and, uh, if your’e in the trenches and the foxholes you’d never want somebody other than John Pistole with you. He’s a great man.
A great man. You know I came out of the – out of law school
with a desire – a sense of idealism and wanting to be engaged in public service.

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