The weather has forced Bluefield College to postpone former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush’s Oct. 30 appearance.
Here’s a release from the college:
The Shott Lecture Series featuring former Florida governor Jeb Bush, scheduled for October 30 at Bluefield College, has been postponed due to the threat of severe weather across the region.
Originally slated for 11 a.m. in the BC Dome on October 30, the Bush lecture will take a back seat for now to an early fall/winter storm, created by a strong cold front moving from the North across the Great Lakes to the East and moisture from Hurricane Sandy making its way from the Atlantic Ocean onto the East Coast.
With already an inch of snow on the ground in Bluefield as of Monday morning, October 29 and with forecasts calling for an additional 4-8 inches of accumulation in lower elevations and up to a foot or more in higher elevations by Tuesday, October 30, the day of the event, organizers decided it best to reschedule the Bush visit.
In addition to the Governor’s and attendees’ safety, potential power outages were also a factor in deciding to delay the Bush lecture, because of the wet, heavy snow expected, coupled with projected winds up to 20 to 40 miles per hour with gusts up to 60 MPH.
The Hugh I. Shott, Jr. Foundation is working with the Washington Speakers Bureau and Governor Bush’s office to rearrange the event. Once a new date is confirmed, details will be communicated to invited guests, participating colleges, and the general public.
A two-term Florida governor, elected in 1998 and 2002, Bush is well known for his policies that promote job growth. In fact, Bush tax cuts during every year of his tenure as governor helped Florida lead the nation in job creation. During his rescheduled visit to Bluefield College, Bush will speak about “America’s Promise in Uncertain Times.”
The Hugh I. Shott, Jr. Foundation has sponsored the Shott Lecture Series since 1988, with a lecture approximately every five years that rotates between Bluefield College, Bluefield State College, and Concord University. The purpose, according to Shott Foundation president R.W. “Buz” Wilkinson, is to “provide quality speakers with national and international recognition,” and to “give students from the three local colleges — plus West Virginia University and Marshall University — the opportunity to interact with national leaders in a forum environment.”
While governor, Bush put Florida on the forefront of consumer healthcare advances by signing Medicaid reform legislation, “Empowered Care.” He also led efforts to promote and reform education. In fact, during his tenure as governor, Florida students made the greatest gains in achievement, and Florida was one of only a handful of states to close the achievement gap.
Before governor, Bush served Florida as secretary of commerce, during which time he promoted the state’s business climate worldwide. He also created Foundation for Florida’s Future, a non-profit organization that later joined forces with the Greater Miami Urban League to establish one of the state’s first charter schools.
In addition to politics, Bush formed and managed a real estate development company, which grew to become the largest full-service commercial real estate company in south Florida. He also co-authored “Profiles in Character,” a book profiling 14 of Florida’s civic heroes making a difference without claiming a single news headline.
Currently, Bush is the head of his own successful consulting business, Jeb Bush and Associates, where his clients range from small technology start-ups to well-known Fortune 500 companies. The son of former United States president George H.W. Bush, he is also the chairman of Foundation for Excellence in Education, a national foundation focused on education reform.
In addition to his speech, when Bush does visit Bluefield College, he will attend a private reception and luncheon following his lecture. He will also participate in a discussion forum with invited students from Bluefield College, Bluefield State College, Concord University, West Virginia University, and Marshall University.
With his appearance, once rescheduled, Bush will join a distinguished list of speakers in the lecture series, including former U.S. Homeland Security director Tom Ridge (BSC 2006), former U.S. secretary of education Dr. William J. Bennett (CU 2001), former vice president of the United States Dan Quayle (BC 1997), former U.S. secretary of state Dr. Henry Kissinger (BSC 1991), and former U.S. ambassador Jeane Kirkpatrick (CU 1988).