Our Founding Spirit

Both Hamilton and Lugar are proud Hoosiers committed to pragmatic, nonpartisan solutions. Further, they exemplify the principle that the United States is more secure and prosperous and the world is a better place when we engage with it.

The spirit of the Hamilton Lugar School is rooted in this tradition.

Lee and Dick's commitment to the power of diplomacy to make the world more just and secure, as well as their judgment, independence and confidence in the resilience of American democratic institutions, set the tone for our school and inspire our students, faculty, and staff.

Amb. Lee Feinstein, founding dean

Hamilton currently serves as a Distinguished Scholar in the Hamilton Lugar School of Global and International Studies and as a Professor of Practice in the School of Public and Environmental Affairs at Indiana University.

A leading figure on foreign policy, intelligence, and national security, Hamilton served as Vice Chairman of the 9/11 Commission and Co-Chairman of the bipartisan Iraq Study Group. Until recently, he served as Co-Chair of the U.S. Department of Energy’s Blue Ribbon Commission on America’s Nuclear Future with General Brent Scowcroft and as a member of the President’s Intelligence Advisory Board.

Continuing to play a leading role in public affairs, he has been at the center of efforts to address some of our nation’s highest-profile homeland security and foreign policy challenges. He is currently a member of the President’s Homeland Security Advisory Council.

Among his published works are How Congress Works and Why You Should Care, Strengthening Congress, and Congress, Presidents, and American Politics. He writes twice-monthly commentaries about Congress and what individuals can do to make representative democracy work better. He is a frequent contributor to national press.

Hamilton graduated from DePauw University and Indiana University School of Law. A former high school and college basketball star, he was inducted into the Indiana Basketball Hall of Fame in 1982. He was married to Nancy Ann Hamilton for 58 years until her death in 2012. They have three children and five grandchildren.

When the then-School of Global and International Studies opened its doors in 2013, both Hamilton and Lugar joined as Distinguished Scholars and professors of practice.

Lugar also led a successful fight to overturn a presidential veto and impose sanctions against the apartheid regime in South Africa. As the leader of the American observer group to the Philippine elections in 1986, he helped ensure the peaceful departure of dictator Ferdinand Marcos and the installation of Corazon Aquino as the country's elected president.

In the 1990s, he was a major voice for the expansion of NATO into the former Warsaw Pact countries. And he was the Senate driver behind ratification of numerous arms control treaties, including the START Treaty, the INF Treaty, the Chemical Weapons Convention and the New START Treaty. He also led efforts to rebuild the State Department after the 1990s budget cuts and to bolster American foreign assistance and food security programs. Currently, he heads The Lugar Center, an organization committed to thoughtful analysis and civil dialogue that facilitates bipartisan governance.

Senator Lugar passed away Sunday, April 28, 2019 at age 87.

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