Former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright says the world is in dire need of realistic, idealistic leaders.
Albright, who served under President Bill Clinton, made her remarks during a brief ceremony Wednesday morning celebrating the renaming of the University of Denver’s Graduate School of International Studies in honor of her father. It will be known as the Josef Korbel School of International Studies.
“I do think the world needs more and more graduates of the Josef Korbel School, because the world is a mess,” Albright told the crowd of about 300 that gathered on the steps of the school.
Albright went on to say her father, who worked as a DU professor for 27 years and established the Graduate School of International Studies in 1964, was both an idealist and a realist who believedthat an individual can make a world of difference.
“The students here are trained in order to be able to make that difference,” Albright said.
Korbel mentored two secretaries of state: his daughter — albeit informally — as well as current appointee Condoleezza Rice, whom Albright referred to as his favorite student.
Albright on Wednesday joked that she and Rice, whom she once tried to recruit as an adviser to Democrat Michael Dukakis, had obviously learned different things from her father.
During the ceremony, Albright briefly fielded questions after remarks by her two siblings, who were also on hand for the dedication, along with university dignitaries.
She said she was proud the United States had intervened to stop ethnic cleansing in the Balkans during her tenure as secretary of state.
“Let me say, one of the things I learned from my father was not to let evil stand,” Albright said.
She also told the audience that it’s also important to understand the religious backgrounds of different cultures and conflicts.
Albright is also scheduled to participate in a discussion of foreign affairs with 200 students, as well as attend a dinner honoring Korbel.