Former AG William Barr to present at annual Reagan Lecture

William P. Barr

Grove City College will welcome two-time U.S. Attorney General William P. Barr to the 14th annual Ronald Reagan Lecture at 7 p.m. Feb. 17 in Ketler Auditorium of the Pew Fine Arts Center on campus.

The lecture series regularly features noted speakers with key connections to our nation’s 40th president. It is presented by The Institute for Faith & Freedom at Grove City College, a conservative think tank committed to the foundations of American liberty.

Barr will participate in a conversation with Grove City College President Paul J. McNulty ’80, himself a former U.S. Deputy Attorney General, and Dr. Paul Kengor, professor of Political Science and senior director and chief academic fellow of the Institute.

“This will be an exceptional evening with an exceptional and very courageous individual. Most people probably don’t realize that the first president Bill Barr served was indeed President Ronald Reagan,” Kengor said. “Beyond that, he has a fascinating background that spans a career from Columbia University to the CIA and to the Reagan and each Bush administration culminating with his service as President Donald Trump’s attorney general. This public servant has seen quite a lot – and he was often at the center of it.”

The lecture is free and open to the public, but tickets are limited, and registration is required. To register, visit Registration deadline is Feb. 1.

In addition to the evening lecture, Grove City College students will have the opportunity to meet and talk with Attorney General Barr about his wide-ranging career and experiences.

Barr was Deputy Assistant Director for Legal Policy for the Reagan administration from 1982 to 1983. After that White House service, Barr was Attorney General from 1991 to 1993 under President George H.W. Bush, and again from 2019 to 2020 under President Donald J. Trump.

After earning degrees in government and Chinese studies from Columbia University, Barr worked for the Central Intelligence Agency from 1973 to 1977 while earning his J.D. with highest honors from George Washington University Law School. After clerking for Judge Malcolm Wilkey of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, Barr joined the Washington, D.C. office of the law firm of Shaw, Pittman, Potts & Trowbridge as an associate. He left the firm to work in the Reagan White House and returned to the law firm and became a partner in 1985.

Under President Bush, Barr served as the Deputy Attorney General from 1990 to 1991 and Assistant Attorney General of the Office of Legal Counsel from 1989 to 1990 before becoming the 77th Attorney General of the United States. During that tenure, Barr helped create programs and strategies to reduce violent crime and was responsible for establishing new enforcement policies in several areas including financial institutions, civil rights, and antitrust merger guidelines. Barr also led the Department’s response to the Savings and Loan crisis, oversaw the investigation of the Pan Am 103 bombing, directed the successful response to the Talladega prison uprising and hostage taking, and coordinated counter-terrorism activities during the First Gulf War. President McNulty served under Barr as Director of Policy and Communications and his chief spokesman. He counts Barr as a key mentor in his career.

From 1994 to 2000, Barr served as Executive Vice President and General Counsel for GTE Corporation, and from 2000 to 2008 as Executive Vice President and General Counsel of Verizon. At both GTE and Verizon, Barr led the legal, regulatory, and government affairs activities of the companies. After retiring from Verizon, Barr advised major corporations on government enforcement matters, as well as regulatory litigation. He served as Of Counsel at Kirkland & Ellis LLP in 2009 and rejoined the firm in 2017.

After being nominated by President Trump, Barr was confirmed as the 85th Attorney General of the United States by the U.S. Senate on Feb. 14, 2019. Barr and John Crittenden (1841 and 1850-1853) are the only two people in U.S. history to serve twice as Attorney General.

For more about The Institute for Faith & Freedom, visit

Former AG William Barr to present at annual Reagan Lecture

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