Mason Professor Emeritus Receives Prestigious Award

Posted: December 21, 2004 at 1:00 am, Last Updated: November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

By Rey Banks

Seymour Martin Lipset, Eminent Scholar and Virginia E. Hazel and John T. Hazel Jr. Professor Emeritus, was honored recently by the National Endowment for Democracy (NED) and the Canadian Embassy for his contributions to the study of the democratic order. In the ceremony, NED inaugurated a lecture series in Lipset’s name, described as a “new forum for discourse on democracy and its progress worldwide.”

Lipset was praised for his strong belief in reason, moderation, tolerance, and restraint as the bedrock values of democracy. Cited as one of the most important comparative analysts of North America, Lipset is a strong advocate for U.S.-Canadian cooperation. “Professor Lipset has had a distinguished academic career that has included major contributions to the study of Canadian society and Canada-U.S. relations. I am delighted that we can host the inaugural lecture,” said Michael F. Kergin, Canadian ambassador to the United States.

In the course of his illustrious career, Lipset has been director of the U.S. Institute of Peace; president of the Society for Comparative Research, Berlin; director of the Progressive Foundation; president of the American Sociological Association; and president of the American Political Science Association. He has been honored by a number of prestigious organizations, including the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the American Philosophical Academy, the National Academy of Sciences, and the National Academy of Education. Lipset joined George Mason in 1990.

The event was attended by dignitaries, ambassadors, and international political figures including Roberto Abdenur, Brazilian ambassador to the United States; Jeane Kirkpatrick, former U.S. ambassador to the United Nations; Robert Litwak, director of the International Studies Division at the Woodrow Wilson Center; as well as George Mason’s President Alan Merten.

“As U.S. citizens, too often we take democracy for granted,” Merten says. “Each of the tributes to Marty stressed that he does not; and that he, by his research and publications, played a major role in bringing democracy to many others. We at George Mason are proud to have him as a colleague.”

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