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September 21, 2006

ULM debate coach discusses issues with U.S. Senate & business leaders

Bob Alexander, coach of ULM’s award-winning debate team, attended the Senate Leadership Summit for Young Professionals in Washington, D.C. on Sept. 19 and 20. Alexander was nominated by U.S. Representative Bobby Jindal to attend the event.

The two-day conference provided a forum for more than 300 young professionals from across the nation to discuss a range of legislative issues with senior members of the U.S. Congress and nationally recognized policy experts.

Of the conference, Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison (Texas), chair of the summit, said, “Bringing together young leaders and our federal officials for an open discussion and exchange of ideas is vital to our nation’s continuing efforts to address issues affecting our families, communities, and nation.”

Senate Majority Leader William H. Frist, M.D. (Tenn.) welcomed the delegates. Senator Hutchison updated participants on Congress’ accomplishments this session and briefed them on the legislative agenda. Senator Lamar Alexander (Tenn.) spoke on protecting America’s competitive edge, Senator John Sununu (N.H.) outlined options for financial security, Senator John Thune (S.D.) shared ideas on increasing small business growth, and Senator Lisa Murkowski (Ark.) discussed access to affordable, innovative health care.

Participants engaged in informative Q&A sessions following each panel. High-level speakers included U.S. Secretary of Labor Elaine L. Chao, who gave the afternoon keynote address; Dr. Mark McClellan, Administrator, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services; and Carly Fiorina, former chairman and CEO of the Hewlett-Packard Company.

“These sessions allowed us to have a meaningful dialogue about keeping America competitive, creating more jobs, building financial security, and making health care accessible and affordable to everyone,” said Sen. Hutchison.

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