The Dole Institute welcomes Senator Pat Roberts for special program

May 1, 2021 - News

LAWRENCE- The Robert J. Dole Institute of Politics at the University of Kansas has announced that it will live-stream the fourth and final installment of its afternoon series inspired by the Voices from the Big First, 1961-1968 exhibit on Tuesday, May 11 at 3 p.m. on the institute’s YouTube channel. This event will feature former U.S. Senator Pat Roberts and will be moderated by Dole Institute Associate Director and Director of Museum and Archives Audrey Coleman.

“Senator Roberts is a long-time friend of Senator Dole and of the institute,” said Director Bill Lacy. “We are always happy when he can join us, especially when he can share his unique insight on something he and Senator Dole share: they both served as U.S. Representatives to the first congressional district in Kansas.”

Featuring a selection of constituent letters written to then-Congressman Bob Dole from the collections of the Dole Archives, this original exhibit curated by Kansas history scholar Virgil Dean, offers a window into the hopes and fears of everyday Kansans as they responded to change at home and conflict abroad. Roberts served the same district for sixteen years after his election to the House in 1980.

“This is a great opportunity to hear about Senator Roberts’ earliest experiences representing Kansas as a congressional staffer and a contemporary of Bob Dole in the 1960s and 70s,” said Coleman. “As a Congressman elected to serve the same district 20 years later, Senator Roberts will also have important insight into the concerns of Kansans in two very different eras.”

Pat Roberts is a former Senator and Congressman from Kansas. During his 23 years in the Senate, Roberts served as Chairman of the Senate Agriculture Committee and Senate Intelligence Committee. While serving in the House of Representatives, Roberts was Chairman of the House Agriculture Committee. He became the first member of Congress in history to have chaired both the House and Senate Agriculture Committees. He also served as the ranking member of each committee. He represented the Big First district of Kansas for 16 years.

This special program will be live-streamed to the institute’s YouTube channel and its website, Due to continuing concerns regarding the novel coronavirus pandemic, the program will only be available online. Follow the Dole Institute on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter for updates regarding this and future programming.

The Voices from the Big First, 1961-1968 exhibit is on display in the Elizabeth Dole Gallery and Reading Room through fall of 2021. Visit our website at for current visiting hours and safety protocols. This exhibit and associated programs examine where Kansas has been and where it’s going to complement Humanities Kansas initiative: Crossroads: Change in Rural America, a partnership between Humanities Kansas and the Smithsonian Institution’s Museum on Main Street program. Funding for the exhibit and related programs was provided by Humanities Kansas. Humanities Kansas is a nonprofit cultural organization that connects communities with history, traditions, and ideas to strengthen civic life.

The Robert J. Dole Institute of Politics is dedicated to promoting political and civic participation as well as civil discourse in a bipartisan, philosophically balanced manner. It is located on K.U.’s West Campus and houses the Dole Archive and Special Collections. Through its robust public programming, congressional archive, and museum, the Dole Institute strives to celebrate public service and the legacies of U.S. Senators Bob and Elizabeth Dole.

The Dole Institute is committed to universal accessibility in all programs and resources. We are in the process of making all of our web projects fully accessible. An accessible version of the material represented on this site will be made available upon request. Please contact us at to request the material be made available in an accessible format, or for general assistance.