Introducing Leading Voices: Conversations from the C-Suite

By Eileen O. RSS Tue, October 29, 2013
The Free Library is proud to introduce Leading Voices: Conversations from the C-Suite, a new morning lecture program featuring the brightest minds in business, brought to you by its award-winning Author Events Series and made possible by sponsor Brandywine Realty Trust.

The inaugural lecture on November 22 will feature Erik Prince, author of Civilian Warriors: The Inside Story of Blackwater and the Unsung Heroes of the War on Terror. Additional featured authors include David Stockman (The Great Deformation: The Corruption of Capitalism in America), former Director of the Office of Management and Budget under President Ronald Reagan, on November 26 and Barnard College President Debora Spar (Wonder Women: Sex, Power, and the Quest for Perfection) on December 12.

Buy tickets! Tickets are $40 for each lecture and include a copy of the featured book as well as a continental breakfast in the lobby of Parkway Central sponsored by the Four Seasons Hotel Philadelphia. Breakfast is available at 7:30 a.m., and the lecture begins at 8:00 a.m. in Montgomery Auditorium, 1901 Vine Street. To order tickets or for more information visit or call 215-567-4341.

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i am appalled that the Free Library is hosting Erik Prince, an infamous war criminal, whose name-changing corporation (Blackwater/Xe/Academi) is implicated in prisoner abuse, murder and violation of multiple federal laws.
Susan Saxe - Philadelphia
Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Hi Susan, The Free Library provides a forum for all topics and points of view. Thank you for your comment.
Eileen O. - Free Library
Thursday, November 14, 2013

The Philadelphia Free Library has chosen to host "author" Erik Prince tomorrow. Prince could be more appropriately labeled with the title of "war profiteer", as his former company Blackwater has raked in billions in public funds- your and mine tax dollars- for it's role in the execution of the U.S. occupations in Iraq and Afghanistan, as well as multiple other shady corporate endeavors in several foreign countries, as well as on American soil. Blackwater has been contracted by the U.S. government to help out in it's dirty wars for one reason alone: to make tons of cash while usurping the democratic process which might provide the war time oversight that could save innocent lives and ensure that violent conflict is not unnecessarily escalated. The Iraq war was about money. Period. These guys are corporate foot soldiers. Their contracts there permitted them to do pretty much whatever they wanted and make some good money doing it, just like the neocons who decided to start the illegal and ill-founded war and hire them to execute it. I'll save you all the gory details, but do yourselves a favor and look up the videos on the internet that show Blackwater shooting innocent people off the roads, or running them over in their convoys in Iraq. And these graphic displays of violence and disregard for life and law are but the most graphic and superficial of offenses. The deeper displays of the company's contempt lay in it's aggressive lobbying in Washington and its self serving development as a mercenary army to be deployed by corporate elites under the radar of the American public. Together with members of the Bush administration, Blackwater is complicit in war crimes. I get that the PFL is about sharing knowledge and ideas, and free speech, and I love that. I'm all about those things too, but I think that hosting Erik Prince show's an extreme error in judgment on the part of the individuals responsible for the arrangement. War criminals and profiteers shouldn't be given a tax funded platform. If Prince wants to speak in Philly, let him rent out a hall- he is extremely rich and has been subsidized enough. Whatever the library is making in the way of the $40 dollar tickets for this event is not enough to pay for the dishonor it has earned in doing so.
Brendan Gavin - Philadelphia
Thursday, November 21, 2013

I am looking forward t series and will add additional comments after
Debbie Casnoff - Philadelphia
Friday, November 22, 2013

Thank you, Eileen O., and the rest of the Free Library for hosting Erik Prince. I am a Quaker and conscientious objector to war, but can appreciate the opportunity that the Free Library has made available for Erik to air his views/experience and for them to powerfully questioned in our city's public sphere. I imagine the Q&A session after his talk this morning was a sight to see! I hope some intrepid Philadelphians challenged Erik and gave him some things to think about.
Andrew T - Rittenhouse
Friday, November 22, 2013