Philip Allen Lacovara has held various positions in public service, including: Special Assistant to Solicitor General Thurgood Marshall; Special Counsel to the Police Commissioner of the NYPD; and Deputy Solicitor General of the United States in charge of the federal government's criminal and national security cases before the Supreme Court. While Counsel to Watergate Special Prosecutors Archibald Cox and Leon Jaworski, he survived the "Saturday Night Massacre" and went on to argue the “Nixon Tapes Case” in the Supreme Court, obtaining the decision that led to the President's resignation. He has taught constitutional law and political science at several universities, appears regularly as a radio and television commentator and publishes opinion pieces in major newspapers on current political affairs including the investigation into possible collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russian government.
Brian Turner is a poet and memoirist who served seven years in the US Army. He is the author of two poetry collections, Phantom Noise and Here, Bullet, which won the 2005 Beatrice Hawley Award, the New York Times “Editor’s Choice” selection, the 2006 PEN Center USA “Best in the West” award, the 2007 Poets Prize, and others. Turner’s work has been published in National Geographic, The New York Times, Poetry Daily, Harper’s Magazine, and other fine journals. Turner has been awarded a United States Artists Fellowship, an NEA Fellowship, a Lannan Foundation Fellowship, and more. His recent memoir, My Life as a Foreign Country, has been called, “achingly, disturbingly, shockingly beautiful.”
As states in the Arab world collapse into conflict, the people of the region resort to other kinds of identities and institutions to provide the necessities of daily life in the 21st century. From religious sects to trading networks and family connections, how has the last century of state formation and deformation shaped these alternatives and what might they mean for politics--in the region and beyond--in the coming decades?
Humanity has always relied on Nature for survival, but today oil is treated as a feedstock and used to produce chemicals to suit any purpose, from fuels and medicines to plastics. By reducing our reliance on Nature, we have forgotten our respect of Nature in the process. The world is now covered by non-biodegradable synthetic plastics which mar landscapes and threaten oceans. The ability to replace synthetic plastics with renewable biopolymers from plants and animals exists, but the consistencies of supply and economies of scale to make them competitive are not. With this mission in mind, we will explore the entire range of the “biorefinery concept,” from dissolution, conversion of plant and animal resources into value added chemicals, extraction of essential oils or vital chemicals, to isolation of pure biopolymers and production of new biomaterials from them.