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HomeCurb Event CenterRetired Four-Star General Colin Powell to Speak at Belmont May 30

Retired Four-Star General Colin Powell to Speak at Belmont May 30

Retired four-star general and former Secretary of State Colin Powell will speak in Nashville at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, May 30 as part of Salon@615, an author reading series presented jointly by Humanities Tennessee, the Nashville Public Library, the Nashville Public Library Foundation, and Parnassus Books. Joining those organizations to present this event is Belmont University, which will host “An Evening with Colin Powell” in the campus’ Massey Concert Hall. The event arrives on the heels of Powell’s latest book release, It Worked for Me: In Life and Leadership, which hit stores May 22.

All tickets for this free, general admission event have been reserved. Individuals interested in attending can call the Box Office at 615-460-8500 to request to be placed on a waiting list should tickets become available.

“An Evening with Colin Powell” will be conducted as a conversation with Jon Meacham, the executive editor and executive vice president at Random House. A former editor of Newsweek and a Pulitzer Prize-winning, bestselling author and a commentator on politics, history and faith in America, he is a contributing editor to Time magazine. A book signing will follow the conversation between Gen. Powell and Mr. Meacham. Gen. Powell will sign only copies of his book, and no other memorabilia. No photography is allowed at this event.

Colin Luther Powell was born in Harlem in 1937 to Jamaican immigrants who stressed the importance of education and personal achievement. A graduate of City College of New York with an MBA from George Washington University, Powell served two tours of duty in Vietnam during which he was awarded the Purple Heart, the Bronze Star and the Soldier’s Medal. In all, he has received 11 military decorations, including the Legion of Merit. In 1987, Powell was appointed National Security Advisory under President Ronald Reagan and later served as Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff under President George H.W. Bush. In 1997, Powell returned to his alma mater, the City College of New York, to open the Colin L. Powell Center for Leadership and Service, offering high-achieving CCNY students the opportunity to prepare for careers in policy and public service. For the rest of the decade, he continued his work with young people as Chairman of America’s Promise: the Alliance for Youth. In 2001, newly elected President George W. Bush appointed Colin Powell to be Secretary of State, an office he held until 2004.

It Worked for Me is filled with vivid experiences and lessons learned that have shaped Powell’s legendary public service career. At its heart are Powell’s “Thirteen Rules”—notes he gathered over the years and that now form the basis of his leadership presentations given throughout the world. Powell’s short but sweet rules—among them, “Get mad, then get over it” and “Share credit”—are illustrated by revealing personal stories that introduce and expand upon his principles for effective leadership: conviction, hard work, and, above all, respect for others. In work and in life, Powell writes, “it’s about how we touch and are touched by the people we meet. It’s all about the people.” 

About Nashville Public Library
Nashville Public Library offers a collection of two million items including books, DVDs, CDs and  downloadable ebooks and audiobooks, as well as more than 1000 public-use computers, 24/7 reference assistance, and free exhibits and programs. For more information, call 615-862-5800 or visit

 About Humanities Tennessee
Humanities Tennessee is a statewide, non-profit organization and the state affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities. Its programs include the Southern Festival of Books: A Celebration of the Written Word, which marks its 23rd annual event Oct. 14-16 in Nashville.

About Parnassus Books
Parnassus Books is an independent bookstore located in Nashville, Tenn., that was started by best-selling author Ann Patchett and publishing veteran Karen Hayes. In Greek mythology, Mount Parnassus was the home of literature, learning, and music. Parnassus Books provides a refuge for Nashvillians of all ages who share in the love of the written word. Visit Parnassus Books online at or in person at:3900 Hillsboro Pike, Suite 14, Nashville, Tennessee.

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