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Victor Ashe
Victor Ashe

KNOXVILLE — Former Knoxville mayor Victor Ashe, who recently completed five years as U.S. ambassador to Poland, will speak at two events this month sponsored by the Howard H. Baker Jr. Center for Public Policy at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville.

On Jan. 14, Ashe and his wife, Joan, will speak on “Five Years Later…Back From Poland” at a luncheon from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at The Foundry at the World’s Fair Park. Advanced reservations are required no later than Monday, Jan. 11, and can be made by calling 974-0931 or e-mailing Betsy Harrell at Cost of the luncheon is $15, payable at the door by cash or check made out to the University of Tennessee.

Then, on Jan. 26, as part of the Baker Center’s Ambassadorial Lecture Series, Victor Ashe will speak on “Eastern Europe’s Role in the 21st Century” in the Toyota Auditorium at the Baker Center, 1640 Cumberland Ave. The lecture, which begins at 7:30 p.m., is free and open to the public.

A Knoxville native, Ashe was elected to the Tennessee House of Representatives in 1968 at the age of 23. He was elected to the Tennessee State Senate in 1975. From 1985 to 1987, Ambassador Ashe served as executive director of the Americans Outdoors Commission. In 1987, he was elected mayor of Knoxville, a position he held for 16 years. On June 23, 2004, he was sworn in as U.S. ambassador to Poland.

Ashe was recently nominated by President Barack Obama to serve on the Broadcasting Board of Governors, which encompasses all U.S. civilian international broadcasting.

Ashe’s political papers are housed in the Baker Center’s Modern Political Archives.

The Baker Center is a nonpartisan center that develops educational programs and promotes research to further the public’s understanding and knowledge of our system of governance, critical public policy issues and the importance of public service and civic engagement. For more information about the Baker Center, see

C O N T A C T :

Amy Blakely (865-974-5034,