William & Mary Chancellor and former Secretary of Defense Robert M. Gates ’65, L.H.D. ’98 will discuss the state of political affairs at a public event next week.
W&M President Taylor Reveley will join Gates for the discussion, scheduled for 8 p.m. on Feb. 8 in the Sadler Center’s Commonwealth Auditorium. Gates will also answer questions from the audience, which may be submitted in advance online. Doors open at 7:15 p.m. for the free event, which is expected to conclude by 9 p.m.
Gates, who graduated from the university with a degree in history, worked in the intelligence community for more than two decades, eventually becoming director of the Central Intelligence Agency. He later served as the president of Texas A&M University before becoming secretary of defense under President George W. Bush. He continued to serve in that position under President Barack Obama, becoming the only SECDEF in history to serve under presidents of different political parties.
Gates was invested as W&M’s 24th chancellor in 2012. He is the first alumnus in modern history to serve in the honorary role. Throughout his tenure, he has visited the university many times, speaking at university-wide ceremonies such as Commencement and hosting discussions on various topics.This will be the second year that Gates has participated in such a discussion with Reveley at the university in advance of W&M’s Charter Day weekend. Virginia Governor Robert Northam will be the keynote speaker at the university’s Charter Day ceremony Feb. 9.