Media Information
Amanda J. Billings

Executive Director of Marketing and Communications
Phone: (812) 330-6222
Fax: (812) 330-6205

Kathleen Kennedy Townsend
to Headline O'Bannon Institute Gala

Bloomington, Indiana— Ivy Tech Community College-Bloomington is hosting former Lieutenant Governor Kathleen Kennedy Townsend (D-Maryland) at a fundraising event this Thursday for the college’s Center for Civic Engagement.  The reception and dinner are part of the two-day O’Bannon Institute for Community Service.  Ms. Townsend’s new book, “Failing America’s Faithful:  How Today’s Churches Mixed God with Politics and Lost Their Way” was recently released on March 1, 2007. 

Ms. Townsend, the first woman to serve as Lt. Governor of the State of Maryland, held office from 1995 to 2003.  Prior to serving as Lt. Governor, she served as Deputy Assistant Attorney General of the United States.

The eldest child of the late U.S. Senator and Attorney General, Robert F. Kennedy, and Ethel Kennedy, she has been involved in community service from an early age.  Ms. Townsend currently serves on the board of directors of the John F. Kennedy Library Foundation, the Center for American Progress, the Points of Light Foundation, National Catholic Reporter and the Institute for Women’s Policy Research.  Ms. Townsend is also a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the Inter-American Dialogue.  Previously, she served on the boards of the Export-Import Bank, Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS), the Wilderness Society and was the chairman of the board of the Robert F. Kennedy Memorial.    

Other services include teaching foreign policy at the University of Pennsylvania and the University of Maryland, Baltimore County.  She has been a Visiting Fellow at the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard.  In the mid-1980s, she founded the Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights Award.

An honors graduate of Harvard University, Ms. Townsend received her law degree from the University of New Mexico where she was a member of the law review.  She has received ten honorary degrees.

Ms. Townsend lives in Baltimore, Maryland with her husband, David, a professor at St. John’s College in Annapolis. They have four daughters, Meaghan (28), Maeve (26), Kate (22), and Kerry (14).

Townsend’s address will follow a private reception beginning at 5:30 p.m. and dinner beginning at 6:30 pm at the Indiana Memorial Union.  The private reception will take place in the Federal Room and the dinner will be in the Tudor Room. 

The O’Bannon Institute was launched in 2004 in an effort by Ivy Tech – Bloomington to bring the community together with leaders from the non-profit, higher education, and political arenas to discuss issues related to public service and to encourage students to become active in their communities.  The Institute is part of Ivy Tech –Bloomington’s Center for Civic Engagement that focuses on service learning, volunteerism, and institutional community involvement.  Previous speakers at the Institute have included former U.S. Senators, Governors, and others who have spent their lives in service to their communities.  Former Senator and Presidential candidate George McGovern will be featured in the 2007 “O’Bannon Conversation” that will be held this Friday on the Ivy Tech campus. 

Those interested in attending the O’Bannon Institute fundraising event featuring Lt. Governor Kathleen Kennedy Townsend, should contact Gretchen Bass in the Chancellor’s Office at 812-330-6001 or by e-mail at  Information about the dinner is also available on the O’Bannon Institute website at Tickets are $35 per person, or $50 for those wanting to attend a private reception with the former lieutenant governor.