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Robert M. La Follette
School of Public Affairs
1225 Observatory Drive
Madison, WI 53706

Telephone:  608.262.3581
Fax: 608.265.3233


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Offner lecture to discuss middle class wages, wealth

Former Wisconsin congressman Steve Gunderson will deliver the annual Paul Offner Memorial Lecture on Wednesday, November 14, at 5 p.m. in the Pyle Center.

In the media

1990 alum and Isthmus news editor Judith Davidoff interviews Steve Gunderson.

Gunderson will discuss “The New Middle Class: Creating Wages and Wealth in the 21st Century” based on a book he is finalizing on re-creating the traditional strength of the middle class. A reception will follow.

The talk commemorates the life of Paul Offner, a scholar, state legislator, congressional adviser and educator who left a legacy of applying solid, evidence-driven research to public policy development, especially for disadvantaged people. Offner’s dedication to public service is celebrated with an annual lecture sponsored by the Urban Institute and the University of Wisconsin–Madison’s La Follette School of Public Affairs.

Gunderson’s appointment as president and CEO of the Association of Private Sector Colleges and Universities earlier this year continues a career of leadership and engagement in education and workforce investment that began when he was elected to the Wisconsin Legislature.

After three terms in Madison, Gunderson served 16 years in the U.S. Congress and was a recognized leader on agriculture, education, employment policy, health care and human rights issues. Following his career in public service, he was named the senior consultant and managing director of the Washington office of The Greystone Group, a strategic management and communications consulting firm.

Gunderson spent the last six years as president and CEO of the Council on Foundations where he launched the foundation’s Global Philanthropy Leadership Initiative, significantly expanding and enhancing the foundation’s leadership role in government relations as the public policy voice of philanthropy toward the public good.

No reservation is required. More information is available from La Follette School outreach director Terry Shelton at 262-3038 or

— posted November 7, 2012; updated November 9, 2012