LAWRENCE — The first U.S. ambassador to Bosnia and Herzegovina will give a series of talks Oct. 9-10 at the University of Kansas as part of a series of events organized by the Center for Russian, East European & Eurasian Studies.
Victor Jackovich will first introduce the final film in the International Peace & Conflict Film Festival, "No Man’s Land," at an event from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 9, in the Spencer Museum of Art auditorium. He will deliver a lecture, “The New Eastern Europe,” at 7 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 10, in Woodruff Auditorium in the Kansas Union. Both events are free and open to the public.
Jackovich has played a key role in U.S. foreign relations with several South and East European states, and he has served as a senior adviser to the U.S. government in Afghanistan. After leaving U.S. government service in 2004, he formed Jackovich International, a commercial and trading firm with offices in the United States, Europe and the Middle East. He is U.S. representative on the EU Business Advisory Council, Brussels, and serves on the boards of the Central and East European University Network, Venice, Italy; the Center for European Perspective, Ljubljana, Slovenia; and numerous other associations.
During 2002 and 2003, Jackovich was senior political adviser for U.S. military operations in Afghanistan, providing policy guidance for U.S. and coalition military, security and counterterrorism operations in Afghanistan, Pakistan and Central Asia. From 1999 to 2002, he was associate director of the George C. Marshall European Center for Security Studies in Germany. Prior to that, Jackovich headed up a variety of U.S. government initiatives, including the Department of State’s Office of Southeast European Cooperative Initiatives, and led the U.S. delegation at the Royaumont Process, linking U.S., European and other international efforts in Southeast Europe.
Throughout his government service, Jackovich has specialized in launching new operations and leading them through their formative years. During the war in the Balkans, he opened the U.S. embassy in Bosnia in 1994 and spent the conflict years in Bosnia as the first U.S. ambassador there from 1992 to 1995. He was U.S. ambassador to Slovenia from 1995 to 1998 and helped that country’s early efforts to enter into NATO and the European Union. He headed the first U.S. representation to the independent state of Moldova in 1992, directed the Department of State’s Task Force on the Balkan Crisis in 1990 and 1991, and led U.S. delegations to international conferences on the Balkans in Geneva and elsewhere in 1992 and 1993.
Other key international assignments with the U.S. government have included Moscow; Sofia, Bulgaria; Kiev, Ukraine; Bucharest, Romania; and Nairobi, Kenya.
Among his many awards are the U.S. government’s Distinguished Presidential Award for diplomatic service and the American Bar Association’s Max M. Kampelman Award. In addition, he holds the Golden Eagle Award, conferred by the Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina; the Serb Civic Society Award; and the Distinguished Civilian Service Award, conferred by the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. He left U.S. government service in 2004 after 33 years, including 13 years at the rank of ambassador.
The International Peace & Conflict Film Festival is organized jointly by the Center for Russian, East European & Eurasian Studies, the Center for Global & International Studies, the Center for East Asian Studies, the Kansas African Studies Center and the Center for Latin American & Caribbean Studies. Film Festival co-sponsors include the University Honors Program, Spencer Museum of Art, Ermal Garinger Academic Resource Center, European Studies Program, Middle East Studies Program, Kansas Consortium for Teaching about Asia, KU Film & Media Studies, Department of Spanish & Portuguese, and KU Peace & Conflict Studies Program.
The visit is made possible by a Title VI Department of Education National Resource Center grant and a grant from the U.S. Army Research Office.