Regina Galer, the National Security Council Director for Weapons of Mass Destruction and Counterterrorism, will visit campus on February 18. Her presentation, entitled “Today's nuclear threats: What they are, how we got here, and what can be done,” is scheduled for 12:40 p.m. in the Student Multipurpose Hall.
Galer has worked on nuclear non-proliferation issues for 18 years at the federal level, starting at the Department of Energy and currently serving at the White House on the NSC. She has also been a visiting professor at the National Defense University and worked at U.S. embassies in India and Pakistan.
Rina Keller, professor of Social Work and chair of the campus Civic Engagement Committee, believes that students deserve the opportunity to learn about this critical topic from an expert.
“Nuclear proliferation remains a threat to the nation's security,” she explains, “and the Civic Engagement Committee determined a need to engage and equip students with information to facilitate critical thinking as they learn more. Dr. Janis Chakars coordinated the event featuring Regina Galer, and we are honored that she is willing to visit Neumann University and share her expertise and insight on this important issue.”
Chakars agrees. “The end of the Cold War brought optimism that the threat of nuclear annihilation was over, but those hopes were not realized,” he says. “If anything, the nuclear threat has grown. More countries have the weapons, and geopolitics are tense. We are lucky to have one of America's foremost experts on the subject joining us to explain the situation.”
The presentation is open only to Neumann students, faculty, and staff.
According to the Federation of American Scientists, “Despite progress in reducing nuclear weapon arsenals since the Cold War, the world’s combined inventory of nuclear warheads remains at a very high level: Nine countries possessed roughly 13,150 warheads as of mid-2021.” Those nine countries are China, France, India, Israel, North Korea, Pakistan, Russia, the United Kingdom, and the United States.
After her presentation, Galer will meet with students who are interested in public service to provide insights about her experience in government. She is a graduate of Iowa State University and holds master’s degrees in Public Affairs and Journalism from Indiana University.
The National Security Council, as described on the White House website, is “the President’s principal forum for national security and foreign policy decision making with his or her senior national security advisors and cabinet officials, and the President’s principal arm for coordinating these policies across federal agencies.”
Today’s NSC considers traditional national security, economic security, health security, environmental security, and more in its deliberations. The council was established in 1947 and placed under the authority of the President two years later.