The John F. Kennedy Jr. Forum at the Institute of Politics is Harvard's premier arena for political speech, discussion and debate.

The forum regularly hosts heads of state, leaders in politics, government, business, labor and the media. A living memorial to President John F. Kennedy, the Institute's mission is to unite and engage students, particularly undergraduates, with academics, politicians, activists, and policy makers on a non-partisan basis to inspire them to consider careers in politics.

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Students seeking information about the IOP Forum Program should contact the Student Chair Ryan Davis or IOP Forum Coordinator Cathey Park. If you're interested in attending a JFK Jr. Forum or watching online, make sure to sign up for our newsletter

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Upcoming Forums

Wednesday February 28 - 6:00pm

Richard Cohen
President, Southern Poverty Law Center
Cornell William Brooks
President and CEO, NAACP (2014-2017)
President and CEO, New Jersey Institute for Social Justice (2007-2014)
Senior Counsel and Special Counsel, Federal Communications Commission (1999-2007)
2017 Visiting Fellow and Director of Campaigns and Advocacy Program (CAP), HKS
Archon Fung
Academic Dean and Winthrop Laflin McCormack Professor of Citizenship and Self-Government, HKS
Co-Director, Transparency Policy Project, Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation, HKS
Sarah Wald
Senior Policy Advisor and Chief of Staff, HKS
Adjunct Lecturer in Public Policy, HKS
Former Assistant Attorney General, MA
Former President, Massachusetts Women’s Bar Association

Thursday March 1 - 6:00pm

Alex Hogan
Multimedia Journalist, STAT News
Documentary Filmmaker, “Runnin” 
Dr. Mark Eisenberg
Primary Care Physician, Massachusetts General Hospital
Advocate for Safe Injection Facilities
Harvard Medical School ‘80
Sheila Burke (Moderator)
Adjunct Lecturer in Public Policy, HKS
Executive Dean, HKS (1996-2000)
Chief of Staff, Former Senate Majority Leader Bob Dole (1985-1996)

Monday March 5 - 6:00pm

Katie Packer Beeson
Founding Partner, Burning Glass Consulting
Deputy Campaign Manager, Romney for President Campaign (2012)
Lina Esco
Activist and Actress, S.W.A.T., KINGDOM, Free The Nipple
Jane Mansbridge
Charles F. Adams Professor of Political Leadership and Democratic Values, Harvard Kennedy School
Author, Why We Lost the ERA
Johanna Maska
CEO, Global Situation Room
Director of Press Advance, President Barack Obama Campaign and White House (2007-2015)
Victoria A. Budson (Moderator)
Founder & Executive Director, Women and Public Policy Program (WAPPP), Harvard Kennedy School
Chairperson, Massachusetts Commission on the Status of Women (2011-2016)

Tuesday March 6 - 6:00pm

Keynote Speech by
Martha Raddatz
Chief Global Affairs Correspondent, ABC News
Co-Anchor, This Week with George Stephanopoulos
Nicco Mele (Moderator)
Lecturer in Public Policy, HKS
Director, Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics, and Public Policy, HKS

Wednesday March 7 - 6:00pm

Introductory Remarks by
David T. Ellwood
Director, Malcolm Wiener Center for Social Policy

A Conversation with
Atul Gawande
Director, Ariadne Labs
Samuel O. Thier Professor of Surgery, Harvard Medical School
Cristine Russell (Moderator)
Science Journalist
Senior Fellow, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs