October 16, 2015
DALLAS (SMU) - Robert Edsel, founder and chair of the Monuments Men Foundation for the Preservation of Art, will be the featured speaker at the Anita and Truman Arnold Lecture of the Willis M. Tate Distinguished Lecture Series at SMU Tuesday, Oct. 20.
Edsel will answer questions at the Turner Construction/Wells Fargo Tate Student Forum at 4:30 p.m. Tuesday in the Hughes-Trigg Student Center Ballroom, 3140 Dyer St. The student forum is a lively question-and-answer session with Tate speakers for area high school students, SMU students, faculty and staff.
The Anita and Truman Arnold Lecture will begin at 8 p.m. Tuesday at SMU's McFarlin Auditorium, 6405 Boaz Lane. For tickets call 214-768-8283.
Tuesday's lecture marks the 250th lecture in SMU's Tate Lecture Series. Now in its 34th season, the series brings thought-provoking and entertaining icons to the SMU campus and Dallas community, providing unique opportunities for student interaction, faculty discourse and community debate with world changers. The series, named for SMU president, Willis M. Tate (1954-1972, 1974-1976), raises more than $800,000 each year for academic scholarships and student programs at SMU, including the President's Scholars program.
About Robert Edsel
Robert Edsel is chair of the not-for-profit Monuments Men Foundation for the Preservation of Art, which he created in 2007 to raise worldwide awareness of the Monuments Men, scholar-soldiers who located and returned millions of works of art and other cultural objects stolen by the Nazis during World War II. The foundation is engaged in raising worldwide awareness of the achievements of the Monuments Men and completing their mission of locating and returning to the rightful owners some of the hundreds of thousands of works of art that are still missing. The foundation was one of 10 recipients of the 2007 National Humanities Medal.
In the course of his 13 years of research, Edsel has written three books about the Monuments Men: Rescuing da Vinci, a photographic telling of their story; the New York Times bestseller The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History, which George Clooney adapted into the 2014 film; and Saving Italy, also a New York Times bestseller. Among Edsel's many honors are the President's Call to Service Award, the Hope for Humanity Award from the Dallas Holocaust Museum/Center for Education and Tolerance, the Texas Medal of Arts, the National Archives' Records of Achievement Award and the Anne Frank Human Writes Award.
After earning a B.B.A. degree from SMU in 1979, Edsel began a career in oil and gas exploration. His company, Gemini Exploration, pioneered the use of horizontal drilling technology in the early 1990s. He sold the company's assets in 1995; the following year he moved to Europe, where he developed a passion for art and became curious about the survival of artworks during World War II and the people who saved them.