Friday, April 1, 2011

Panel to Assess State of International Trade, Assess Impact of Faith on Free-Trade Policy

CHESTERTOWN, MD—On Thursday, April 14th the Institute for Religion, Politics, and Culture at Washington College will host a roundtable discussion on the status of international trade today and the role of religious faith in supporting free-trade initiatives around the globe. The presentation, “Trade: Routes that Build Nations, Religions and Cultures,” will feature Ambassador Clayton Yeutter, a former U.S. Trade Representative; Jolanta Iwanicka, the top economist with the Polish Embassy; and Bob Grace, a Maryland executive whose manufacturing company does business on five continents. Part of the Institute’s Project on Faith and Free Markets, the roundtable will take place at 4:30 p.m. in the Casey Academic Forum on the College campus, 300 Washington Avenue and is free and open to the public.
Clayton Yeutter was U.S. Trade Representative under President Reagan from 1985 to 1988. In that role, he negotiated the U.S.-Canada Free Trade Agreement, which was the precursor to the North American Free Trade Agreement, and helped launch the historically ambitious 100-nation Uruguay Round, which led to the creation of the World Trade Organization. Yeutter was appointed Secretary of Agriculture by President George H.W. Bush in 1989 and spent one year (1991) as chairman of the Republican National Committee before returning to the Bush Administration as a Counselor to the President.
Prior to becoming U.S. Trade Representative, Yeutter spent a decade (1978-85) as President and Chief Executive Officer of the Chicago Mercantile Exchange. He is now a Senior Adviser with the Washington law firm Hogan and Lovells. Yeutter holds a Ph.D. in agricultural economics and a law degree from the University of Nebraska–Lincoln.
Jolanta Iwanicka is First Secretary, Economic Section, for the Embassy of the Republic of Poland. In that role, she tracks developments in the United States economy and trade relations between the two countries, including regulatory issues and development cooperation. She previously spent eight years in Warsaw as Manager of the European Union’s PHARE programs (Poland and Hungary: Assistance for Restructuring their Economies), preparing Poland for its 2004 entry to the EU. Working with the European Commission and other institutional partners in Western Europe, she oversaw required changes in areas of regional development, institution building, health, taxation and the procurement of equipment. Iwanicka completed graduate studies in Economics at the University of Warsaw and holds bachelor’s degrees from the University of Nebraska–Lincoln (political science) and the University of Lodz, Poland (English Philology).
Bob Grace is president and chief operating officer of Dixon Valve & Coupling Company, a leading manufacturer and supplier of hose fittings and accessories with international headquarters located in Chestertown. Grace earned a bachelor’s degree in business management from Towson University, and a master’s degree in business administration from the University of Baltimore. A 21-year veteran of the company, he manages all eight of its divisions. Dixon’s products are used in a variety of industries, from fire protection and food processing to mining and chemical processing. The company has manufacturing, warehouse, sales and/or service facilities in 13 U.S. states and in Canada, Mexico, Australia, England, Germany, China, India, Russia and Singapore.
Founded in 2009, the Institute for Religion, Politics, and Culture is an academic program of Washington College dedicated to the objective study of religion's historic and continuing role in cultural and political life, both in the United States and abroad. For more information, please visit