Major SCIS achievements 1960s – present

1960s – 1970s

  • Conducted numerous seminars and other programs on international issues at Georgia State University and Georgia Tech. The latter series was conducted during the Vietnam War and was designed to give academic credibility to the ROTC.

    Andrew Young, SCIS First Regional Leadership Conference, 1976

  • Convened the first racially integrated program, a teacher workshop, conducted for Georgia State University.
  • Brought the 1974 Organization of American States meeting to Atlanta. At that time, it was the largest and most important international meeting held in the South. It was the first time that the OAS meeting was held in a U.S. city other than Washington, DC. A number of Latin American and Caribbean consulates were established in Atlanta as a result of this meeting.
  • Hosted the first Keidanren delegation of Japanese industrialists to visit Atlanta and the Southeast to evaluate the region for potential Japanese investment. Without the approval of Keidanren, a Tokyo-based organization that set Japanese economic policy, investment by Japanese companies in Georgia would not have been possible.
  • Prepared and presented the proposal signed by then-Governor Carter which resulted in the opening of the Japanese Consulate in Atlanta. This was instrumental in helping to attract other Consulates to Atlanta.
  • Hosted every People’s Republic of China Ambassador to Washington since normalization, as well as introduced them to Governors and other state officials in the region.
  • Hosted the first meeting in Atlanta at which Palestinian and Israeli representatives discussed the Palestinian problem.
  • Convened the first program in Atlanta for a multiracial delegation of South Africans who discussed the apartheid situation in their country.
  • Invited by the NATO Secretariat in Brussels to select numerous delegations of distinguished Americans to visit NATO headquarters.
  • Established excellent working relationships with senior Soviet officials. Arranged and hosted the first visit to the Southeast by Georgiy Arbatov, Director of the USA-Canada Institute in Moscow and Russian Premier’s personal advisor on North American affairs.
  • Selected by the USA Institute in Beijing as the organization to introduce the Institute’s Director to the Southeastern United States.
  • Organized Town Hall Meetings in Atlanta for the U.S. State Department over a ten-year period.
  • Supported the formation of the Japan-America Society of Georgia and obtained grants to send the Southern Center Fellow for Japan Studies to that country in preparation for his becoming the first Executive Director of the JASG. Hosted distinguished guests including King Hussein of Jordan, Prince Faisal and Sheikh Ahmed Zaki Yamani of Saudi Arabia, former Chinese Vice Premier Deng Xiaoping, former French President Valery Giscard d’Estaing, former New Zealand Prime Minister Robert D. Muldoon, and Dr. Henry Kissinger.
  • In order to encourage the teaching of international courses, brought together 180 professors from academic institutions in the region to participate in eight-part programs on international and world issues. The programs were held for three consecutive years and funded by the Exxon Education Foundation. Guest lecturers included outstanding public servants such as Dean Rusk, George Ball, McGeorge Bundy, Elliot Richardson, and Joseph Cisco.


  • In 1983, brought together, for the first time in history, all of the living former U.S. Secretaries of State to discuss important foreign policy issues, and produced a one-hour television special for national airing over the Public Broadcasting Service and overseas via the U.S. Information Agency.

    Luncheon briefing with the 14th Dalai Lama, His Holiness Tenzin Gyatso, 1987

  • In 1987 convened, for the first time, an equally historic meeting with all of the former U.S. Secretaries of Defense to discuss critical defense issues. This program also aired nationally on PBS and overseas.
  • The conferences and televised programs were originally funded by the General Electric Foundationand later by the Ford Foundation for ten years, becoming an annual event and a staple of PBS’s programming. A total of seven former Secretaries of State Conferences and three former Secretaries of Defense Conferences were produced and edited by the Southern Center and aired on PBS during the 1980s.
  • Invited by premier British organization, the Ditchley Foundation, to co-host semi-annual conferences at Ditchley Park in the United Kingdom as well as in Atlanta. These meetings attracted senior British and American government, parliamentary,and private sector leaders.
  • Conducted non-partisan, annual programs on Japan and U.S.-Japan relations over a ten-year period funded by the U.S.-Japan Friendship Commission. The programs were attended by media representatives, state government officials, and over 100 professors from 11 states and 65 academic institutions.
  • Conducted an international management course for ten consecutive years with the Georgia Institute of Technology’s College of Management.
  • Presented the first series ever held in Atlanta for the business community addressing U.S. global competitiveness with a particular emphasis on trade, industrial policy, and business leadership.
  • Conducted a week-long professional development seminar for outstanding teachers at the request of North Carolina University System.
  • Designed programs for the Executive Seminar of the Foreign Service Institute, the State Department’s most senior foreign service training program.
  • Briefed the Atlanta Consular Corps on regional issues and world problems through an annual address by the Center’s President. Chosen by a major corporate member to co-host an annual Christmas reception, held at the Center, in honor of the Consular Corps.

    Special Briefing with Crown Prince Hassan of Jordan (right), 1988

  • Provided the forum for a major policy address on economic development issues by then-Secretary of State George Shultz.
  • Selected by the State Department to organize and host the first on-lineinteractive television conference between Secretary of State George Shultz and selected high school students. Atlanta was one of five cities in the country chosen to participate in the program.
  • Supported by the Ford Foundation to produce a 1989 television program on the United Nations.
  • Assisted in the start-up and development stages of many of the internationally oriented organizations in the Southeast, including the Japan-America Society of Georgia and several Chambers of Commerce representing various countries.
  • Called upon many times to advise and assist governors, senior state officials, corporate executives, and academics on international and trade issues.
  • Hosted such distinguished guests as: the Dalai Lama; Crown Prince Hassan of Jordan; Head of Soviet Information Ministry Gennadi Gerasimov; U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Vernon Walters; and Lord Carrington, former United Kingdom Ambassador to NATO.


  • In 1991, brought together for the first time former Secretaries of the Treasury to discuss domestic and global economic issues. A one-hour television special was produced and edited for national airing over the Public Broadcast Service.
  • Awarded the 51st Annual George Foster Peabody Award for producing The Annual Report Series featuring the former Secretaries of State and Defense.
  • Organized the first televised International Conference of World Leaders in 1992. The participants were former Chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany Helmut Schmidt, former Prime Minister of Japan Yasuhiro Nakasone, and former Prime Minister of the United Kingdom Lord Callaghan of Cardiff. The forum was held at the German State Opera House in Berlin, Germany, and moderated by Marvin Kalb.
  • Organized and presented the 1991 College Board National Forum’s first Report of the Former U.S. Secretaries of Education. Participants included William Bennett, Lauro Carazos, Shirley Hufstedler and Terrel Bell. Two additional Former Secretaries of Education Conferences were held in 1992 and 1993. All three conferences were televised nationally.
  • Completed the development of the End of the Soviet Union Instructor’s Guide and companion video, the first unit in the Southern Center’s World in Transition multimedia educational series. Also conducted the first teacher-training workshop incorporating the new educational materials at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University in Blacksburg, Virginia.
  • Produced and edited for public broadcasting stations a program with the former United States Permanent Representatives to the United Nations, focusing on “Redefining Security: The United Nations and the United States.” The meeting was held in San Francisco in celebration of the 50th anniversary of the establishment of the UN.
  • Convened a conference on the Middle East, in cooperation with the American-Arab Council, entitled “The Gulf Crisis: Global Ramifications.” Main speakers included former Secretary of Defense Frank C. Carlucci and the Ambassador of the Arab Republic of Egypt El Sayed Abdel Raouf El Reedy.
  • Hosted a panel discussion with world leaders. The theme was “Beyond NAFTA and GATT: The Global Economy in the Year 2000.”
  • Presented in Atlanta the 20th and 21st Annual International Management Courses for businessmen.
  • Completed the World in Transition Instructor’s Guides and companion videos on Latin America in Transition, East Asia in Transition, The Middle East in Transition, and Russia and the Other Former Soviet Republics in Transition.
  • Produced and edited for PBS telecasts the eighth through the fifteenth Former Secretaries of State Conferences, and the fourth through the thirteenth Former Secretaries of Defense Conferences


  • Organized and presented the opening session of the National Summit on Africa Conference in Washington, DC. The participants were Professor Ali Mazrui, former British Foreign Secretary Lord David Owen, U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for Africa Susan Rice (now U.S. Ambassador to the UN), former Minister of Finance of Liberia Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf (now president of Liberia), Senator Paul Simon, and Ambassador Andrew Young. Produced and edited a version of the conference for Public Broadcasting stations.
  • Presented, with the University of Southern California in Los Angeles, “Global Review 2000 with World Leaders”. Aired on public broadcasting stations, this program featured Shimon Peres, former Prime Minister of Israel; Warren Christopher, former U.S. Secretary of State; Kim Campbell, former Canadian Prime Minister; Han Sung-Joo, former Foreign Minister of the Republic of Korea; and Andrei Kozyrev, former Foreign Minister of the Russian Federation.

    World in Transition Series

  • Conducted in Atlanta the 22nd and 23rd Annual International Management Courses for businessmen.
  • Presented, with the Korea Economic Institute of America, “Doing Business with Korea,” featuring the Director General of the Republic of Korea’s Ministry of Commerce, Industry, and Energy; the Ambassador of the Republic of Korea to the U.S.; and the Ambassador of the U.S. to the Republic of Korea.
  • Hosted the 21st and 22nd Annual Asia-Pacific Seminars. Program titles were “Critical Issues Facing Taiwan Following the 2000 Elections,” and “Korea’s Economic Progress and Prospects.”
  • Presented, with the Morehouse School of Medicine, two televised conferences featuring former Secretaries of Health and Human Services.
  • Co-sponsored a program on trade and investment opportunities in Africa, featuring Ambassadors from Kenya, Madagascar, and Namibia.
  • Produced and edited a European Summit, with former Prime Minister of Sweden Carl Bildt, former Prime Minister of Canada Kim Campbell, former Member of UK Parliament Sir Eldon Griffiths, Retired General of the German Armed Forces Klaus Naumann, former Polish Minister of Foreign Affairs Andrzej Olechowski, and former U.S. Secretaries of State Lawrence Eagleburger and Alexander Haig. The moderator was Marvin Kalb.
  • Produced and edited for public broadcasting “The Angry World and the Untold American Story.” The program featured a panel on international news coverage. Participating were foreign editor of The New York Times Roger Cohen, deputy managing editor of the Chicago Tribune George de Lama, University of Missouri Professor Stuart H. Loory, NPR senior foreign editor Loren Jenkins, assistant managing editor of the Los Angeles Times Simon K.C. Li, CNN executive vice president Eason Jordan, contributing columnist to the Dallas Morning News Lee Cullum, and vice president for news of The Anniston Star Chris Waddle. It was moderated by former NewsHour with Jim Lehrer senior producer and media correspondent Terence Smith.
  • In celebration of the Southern Center’s 40th anniversary (in 2003) hosted the World Justice Award Dinner, honoring guest speaker Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor.
  • Hosted a program featuring President of the World Bank James D. Wolfensohn.
  • Presented a discussion between former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright and Ambassador Jeane Kilpatrick.
  • Hosted “A Dialogue on Europe: In Celebration of Europe Day and the 50th Anniversary of the Treaty of Rome,” featuring Ambassador of the Federal Republic of Germany Dr. Klaus Scharioth and Ambassador of France Jean-David Levitte.
  • Presented separate addresses by then-Secretary of State Colin Powell and then-Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld.
  • Produced and edited for public broadcasting systems the 16th Annual Former Secretaries of State Conference, and the 14th and 15th Annual Former Secretaries of Defense Conferences.
  • Completed the World in Transition Instructor’s Guides and companion videos for Africa in Transition, Europe in Transition, and South Asia in Transition, and a second edition of The Middle East in Transition.

    Teacher training workshop “Teach Europe,” 2009

  • The World in Transition materials became the core curriculum for the U.S. Air Force officer-training programs. The materials are used at 122 college-based ROTC units, as well as in the basic officer-training program and at the Air University. A companion Regional Studies Reader was developed. It was the first part of the World in Transition series developed specifically for students.
  • Developed for the Air Force JROTC a series of workbooks for high school students based on the World in Transition series. The books were used in the 800 plus high school JROTC programs in this country and abroad. The series received high praise from instructors.
  • From 1992 through 2011, the Southern Center’s professional development program conducted over 600 workshops for social studies teachers at the middle and high school levels.


    • Produced and edited for public broadcasting systems the 16th Annual Conference with Former Secretaries of Defense.
    • Completed archiving its 50-year history, turning it into an extensive and unique collection and resource. Carefully indexed and cataloged, the archives include video, audio, photographs, and print materials that chronicle the people, places, and events that have shaped our world, the nation, and the southeast region of the U.S. during the past half a century. Senior Member of the American Society of Appraisers Allan Stypeck concluded that “the SCIS archive represents, in most probability, the most ambitious and successful educational project relating to international affairs ever created.”

      Video collection includes 630 hours of edited and unedited footage of 45 original Peabody Award-winning televised conferences with Former Secretaries of Defense, State, Treasury, Education, and Health & Human Services, as well as UN Ambassadors and World Leaders. The collection is digitized and time coded with transcripts and release forms from all participants. Secretary of State Dean Rusk, commenting on the historic significance of these programs said, “never before in American history have all former Secretaries been called upon in a forum to share their collective experience, wisdom, and advice with a sitting Administration and with the American people.”

      The video collection also includes a 13-part series of interviews by Edwin Newman with Former Secretary of State Dean Rusk who talks about world history and gives insights into American foreign policy from the time of growing up in Georgia through the Cuban Missile Crisis, the Vietnam War, the Cold War, and the Nuclear Age.

      Photographic collection in notable for its framed and signed photographs by former Secretaries who participated in the Center’s televised conferences. Additionally, there are hundreds of sorted, indexed, and cataloged photographs of other U.S. and world leaders.

      Audio collection contains over 900 audiotapes of talks given by hundreds of world leaders, diplomats, business leaders, and international experts. They feature speakers as diverse as Chinese Premier Deng Xiaoping and the Dalai Lama.

      Print collection dates back to 1963 and includes a vast array of sorted and indexed documents, letters, articles, publications, and other print materials that chronicle national and world events. Many documents reveal the behind-the-scenes role played by the Center in its efforts to internationalize and industrialize our city, state, and region.