Dr. D. Elwood Dunn Named 2012 National Orator, as Liberia Celebrates 165th Independence Anniversary in Montserrado County on July 26

Sunday, 29th April 2012

Monrovia, Liberia - President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf has selected Dr. D. Elwood Dunn, a distinguished historian and educator, as the 2012 National Orator, as Liberia celebrates its 165th Independence Anniversary in the nation’s capital, Monrovia, on July 26.

This year’s celebrations take place in Montserrado County, venue of the first “26 Day” festivities of the Sirleaf Administration in 2006. Activities marking this year’s anniversary are being planned by the 165th Independence Anniversary Committee.

Dr. Elwood Dunn, the 2012 National Orator, is the Alfred Walter Negley Professor of Political Science at Sewanee: the University of the South, in Tennessee, in the United States. A member of the Sewanee faculty since 1981, he has taught courses in international relations and comparative politics, and his research interests remain the politics and societies of West Africa, particularly Liberia.

Before joining Sewanee, Professor Dunn taught at Seton Hall University, and served in the Government of Liberia, rising to the position of Chief of Staff (Minister of State for Presidential Affairs) in the Office of the President.

Professor Dunn has authored or co-authored some 10 books, the most recent being a three-volume reference study, The Annual Message of the Presidents of Liberia 1848-2010: State of the Nations Addresses to the Legislature. He also authored Liberia and the United States during the Cold War: Limits of Reciprocity (2009). 

Born in Lower Buchanan, Grand Bassa County, he attended school there, graduating from the Bassa High School in 1960. He enrolled at the University of Liberia for two years, and transferred to Cuttington College and Divinity School where he graduated in the Class of 1964 with a B.A. in Political Science. He earned a Certificate in Political Science from the Université de Lyons (France), and his M.A. and Ph.D. in International Studies from The American University in the United States.

Professor Dunn will be the seventh National Orator of this Administration. Preceding him were: Madam Garmai Estella Korboi (Lofa, 2011); Rev. Monsignor Dr. Robert G. Tikpor (Nimba, 2010); Paramount Chief Flomo T. Barworor (Bong, 2009); Dr. Sakui Woiba Suo Godoe Malakpa (Margibi, 2008); Mr. Kimmie Weeks (Grand Bassa, 2007); and Judge Emma Shannon Walser (Montserrado, 2006).