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Former U.S. Senator & Basketball Star Bill Bradley To Speak At UK October 16

By Carl Nathe

LEXINGTON, Ky. -- Sports, Politics and Public Policy: What Happens When They Intersect? That’s the theme of what promises to be a stimulating 90-minute program at the Worsham Cinema in the University of Kentucky’s new Gatton Student Center at 3:30 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 16.

Former Rhodes scholar, Naismith Basketball Hall of Famer and U.S. Senator Bill Bradley (pictured) will be the featured speaker for the Fall 2018 Wendell H. Ford Public Policy Lecture.

The event, named for the late former Kentucky governor and four-term U.S. senator who served as Senate majority whip, is being hosted by UK’s Martin School of Public Policy and Administration and is co-sponsored by Commerce Lexington. The program is free and open to students, faculty, staff and the public.

Bradley was in the news earlier this year when the Supreme Court in May struck down as unconstitutional a 1992 law that effectively banned commercial sports betting in most states. Bradley was the legislation’s lead sponsor, helping guide its passage through Congress into law.

Following his formal remarks at the Oct. 16 event, Bradley will sit down with three award-winning guests for a panel discussion on the issue of sports gambling and other topics. KET Public Affairs Managing Producer and host Renee Shaw will serve as moderator and will be joined by veteran UK football and basketball radio play-by-play broadcaster Tom Leach and Centre College Economics Professor and sports economist Bruce Johnson.

Audience members will then have an opportunity to ask their own questions before the program concludes at 5 p.m.

Bradley represented New Jersey in the Senate and served with Ford in Washington from 1979-1997. Bradley also made an unsuccessful bid for the Democratic Party presidential nomination in 2000.

He presently is a managing director of Allen and Company LLC in New York.

Bradley holds a bachelor’s degree in American history from Princeton University and a master’s degree from Oxford University in England, where he was a Rhodes scholar.

In addition, Bradley is a former pro basketball player and two-time NBA champion as a member of the New York Knicks (1967-77) and has authored seven books on American politics, culture and the economy. He currently hosts American Voices, a weekly show on Sirius XM Satellite radio.

“Now in its fifth year, the Ford Lecture is fast becoming one of the premier campus events featuring nationally known outside speakers with public policy expertise,” said Ron Zimmer, professor and director of the Martin School. “The topic this year is particularly timely. We are excited to welcome Senator Bradley to campus and look forward to hearing his perspective on this and other issues.”

Previous Ford Lecture speakers include former Republican Senate Whip Alan Simpson of Wyoming, Pulitzer Prize winning author Jon Meacham, former Senate Democratic leader Tom Daschle of South Dakota, and former Congressman Ron Mazzoli of Louisville.

Bradley, a consensus All-American at Princeton who was named Associated Press' College Basketball Player of the Year in 1965, has a couple of noteworthy Kentucky connections.

He holds the single-game scoring record of 47 points for the University of Kentucky Invitational Tournament (UKIT) set in 1963 when Princeton defeated Wisconsin 90-87 in the third-place game. The UKIT’s last year was 1989.

Bradley also was a member of the 1964 Olympic gold medal winning U.S. men’s basketball team in Tokyo where he was a teammate of Jeff Mullins, who played at Lexington’s Lafayette High School before going on to play at Duke University.

Source: UK Now / University of Kentucky News

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