MONTGOMERY, Ala. – Faulkner University announced former Vice President of the United States The Honorable Michael R. Pence as the speaker for this year’s Annual Benefit Dinner during a press conference held on Tuesday. President Mike Williams revealed the news on Montgomery’s campus.
“Vice President Mike Pence has had a storied career as a public servant,” Williams said. “He is also a man of deep Christian faith. He’s been an ardent advocate for liberty and most expressly religious liberty, the guiding force of our founding fathers who forged this republic. It’s on this foundation of religious liberty that Faulkner stands today.”
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Since it began more than 40 years ago, Faulkner University’s Annual Benefit Dinner continues to be a longstanding tradition and a red-letter event on the social calendar for Montgomery and the River Region, selling out to nearly 2,000 guests. This year’s Benefit Dinner will be hosted at the Renaissance Hotel and Convention Center on October 7.
“The Faulkner Benefit Dinner is the signature event of this institution,” Williams said. “It’s a celebration of the rich mission of this institution. At this event we highlight the accomplishments of the university. We announce signature investments we’re making in the River Region and we reveal our bold and robust dreams for the future. The central purpose of the event is not about us. It’s about our students.”
Over the years, Faulkner has brought renowned politicians including a president, a first lady, a prime minister and a U.S. ambassador along with journalists, athletes, coaches, comedians and astronauts to speak in Montgomery.
Pence will bring his political experience as the 48th Vice President of the United States under President Donald Trump to the River Region for what will be an exciting night.
“The exciting feature of our dinner is our keynote speaker and each year Faulkner brings a renowned thought-leader to speak in Montgomery to address timely and relevant topics,” Williams said. “Faulkner strives to bring provocative speakers who would not ordinarily be introduced to our citizens here to talk about these topics.”
Since entering politics at the age of 40, Pence has established himself as a champion of limited government, fiscal responsibility, economic development, educational opportunity and the U.S. Constitution.
Pence’s record of legislative and executive experience, and his strong family values are what prompted President Donald Trump to select Pence as his running mate in July 2016.
Born in Columbus, Indiana on June 7, 1959, Pence was one of six children born to Edward and Nancy Pence who ran a successful convenience store business in their small Indiana town. Working there with his family nurtured Pence’s belief in the importance of hard work, faith and family.
Pence earned his bachelor’s degree in history from Hanover College in 1981 and later attended Indiana University School of Law when he met his future wife, Karen.
After graduating, Pence practiced law, led the Indiana Policy Review Foundation, and began hosting The Mike Pence Show, a syndicated talk radio show and a weekly television public affairs program in Indiana. Along the way he became the proud father to three children, Michael, Charlotte, and Audrey.
Pence always knew that he needed to give back to the state and the country that had given him so much. In 2000, he launched a successful bid for his local congressional seat, entering the United States House of Representatives at the age of 40.
The people of east-central Indiana elected Pence six times to represent them in Congress. His colleagues quickly recognized his leadership ability and unanimously elected him to serve as Chairman of the House Republican Study Committee and House Republican Conference Chairman.
In 2013, Pence left the nation’s capital when he was elected the 50th Governor of Indiana. He brought the same limited government and low-tax philosophy to the Indiana Statehouse. As governor, he enacted the largest income tax cut in Indiana history, lowering individual income tax rates, the business personal property tax, and the corporate income tax in order to strengthen the state’s competitive edge and attract new investment and good-paying jobs. Due to his relentless focus on jobs, the state’s unemployment rate fell by half during his four years in office.
As Governor of Indiana, Pence increased school funding, expanded school choice, and created the first state funded Pre-K plan in Indiana history. He made career and technical education a priority in every high school. Under his leadership, Indiana, known as “The Crossroads of America,” invested more than $800 million in new money for roads and bridges across the state.
Tickets to hear Pence speak are on sale now at https://www.faulkner.edu/pence. Proceeds from the dinner go to support the university, and student scholarships in particular.