British ambassador to visit Vanderbilt Oct. 23

Vanderbilt will host an enlightening fireside chat featuring Dame Karen Pierce, the British ambassador to the United States, and Morgan Ortagus, former spokesperson for the United States Department of State. The conversation will take place on Monday, Oct. 23, from 5 to 6 p.m. in Alumni Hall, Room 202. This event is open to the public.

As the university focuses on expanding its global presence through research, dialogue and relationship building as part of its Sesquicentennial celebration, this fireside chat is an opportunity for the Vanderbilt community to hear firsthand from global leaders on critical issues facing our world.

Pierce and Ortagus will discuss the future of the U.S./U.K. partnership post-Brexit, NATO, security, trade, Ukraine and China. Additionally, the conversation will delve into economic and trade matters, with a particular focus on the Southeastern U.S. and Tennessee and the Atlantic Declaration and its Critical Mineral Agreement.

Pierce brings a wealth of experience to the table. From 2018-20, she served as the United Kingdom’s permanent representative to the United Nations in New York. Her career in diplomacy spans decades, including various significant roles in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, including her time as private secretary to the British ambassador to the United States in Washington.

Pierce’s extensive background also includes positions in Tokyo, London and New York, where she served as deputy permanent representative and ambassador at the U.K. Mission to the UN. Her contributions as the U.K.’s ambassador to Afghanistan and special representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan underscore her commitment to international affairs.

Ortagus served as spokesperson for the U.S. Department of State from 2019 to 2021. She previously held government positions as a deputy attaché and intelligence analyst at the U.S. Department of the Treasury and as a public affairs officer at the United States Agency for International Development. Ortagus was a national security contributor at Fox News prior to her appointment as State Department spokesperson. She is an officer in the United States Navy Reserve.

All are welcome to attend this exciting event. Don’t miss the chance to engage with Pierce and Ortagus as they navigate the complex topics of our dynamic global landscape.

The event is sponsored by the Division of Government and Community Relations and the Max Kade Center for European and German Studies.