Higgins Gives Powerful Inaugural Lecture at Daemen

March 4, 2014

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Congressman Brian HigginsCongressman Brian Higgins

AMHERST, N.Y. -- Congressman Brian Higgins kicked off the Daemen College Distinguished Leaders Lecture Series on Feb. 24 with an exceptionally insightful and inspiring discussion on the latest international, national and regional issues.

Speaking before a crowd of more than 200 attendees, Higgins started off his mainly unscripted lecture with an examination of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. In the ever-evolving peace effort in these countries and throughout the Middle East, he connected today’s unrest in that region with the peace agreement in Ireland that was forged by George Mitchell.

“The principles that George Mitchell used to negotiate peace in Ireland are a model to bring peace in the Middle East,” said Higgins, adding that unless a country can come together and forge a new future, there will never be peace and prosperity in that nation.

Segueing to a national view, Higgins discussed the greatness of the U.S. but emphasized that, as a whole, “it’s time we nation build, not in Afghanistan, Iraq or another country, but right here in America. We are known for inspiring other nations but yet we are no longer moving forward. We’ve lost the tradition of being aspirational.

“As a nation,” he added, “we must make the kind of investment we once did in advancing America and our ideals, especially as other nations are rising and, in some cases, surpassing the U.S.”

Higgins wrapped up his lecture with a look at growth and development in Western New York, an effort he’s spearheaded with a number of initiatives. To illustrate the region’s turnaround, he pointed to the importance of embracing WNY’s natural resources. “Our waterfront, which is undergoing a major transformation, the Buffalo Medical Corridor and other changes are the future of our region. We are injecting new viability into a community that’s been inactive for three decades.”

The next Distinguished Leaders Lecture will feature House Majority Leader Eric Cantor. His lecture, “An America That Works,” will be presented at 2 p.m. March 10 in the Wick Campus Center Social Room.

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