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Bill Lacy was appointed Director of the Dole Institute in 2004 and has since established a highly-respected venue for bipartisan, philosophically-balanced political programming. His network of political contacts resulting from his twenty-year career in Washington, D.C. as a campaign strategist has served the Dole Institute well. Under Bill’s leadership, the Dole Institute has hosted an extensive cadre of national and international political leaders, practitioners and journalists. Students and community members benefit from the Dole Institute’s ongoing lecture series and nationally-recognized post-election conferences. Bill has had major roles in seven presidential campaigns and served in senior roles in Bob Dole’s 1988 and 1996 presidential campaigns. In August 2007, Bill took a leave of absence from the Dole Institute to manage the presidential campaign of former Sen. Fred Thompson (R-Tenn.). Bill and his wife Susie returned in April 2008. Susie, a loyal Dole Institute supporter, is a familiar face at Dole Institute events.
Under Bill’s watch, the Dole Institute fundraising team has added $2 million to the Dole Institute’s endowment. In addition, Dole archivists have embarked on a major oral history program on Bob Dole’s Senate leadership and continue processing the Dole Papers, one of the largest Congressional collections in the country.