WATERVILLE — The George J. Mitchell International Lecture Series will hold a lecture this week on the Colby College campus after going without in-person gatherings during the pandemic.

Colby’s Goldfarb Center for Public Affairs has hosted the lecture series for nearly 15 years.

It’s named for the former U.S. senator, international negotiator and Waterville native. “The series was launched by generous contributions from Mitchell family members and friends of the senator who were eager to bring a high-profile event to the Waterville area,” Colby said in a news release.

This year’s lecture is scheduled to be held Thursday at 7 p.m. at the Ostrove Auditorium in Colby’s Diamond Building. The speaker for the event is Gayle E. Smith, an advisor to three U.S. presidents and one of the world’s leading experts on global development and global health security.

Smith last year served as the State Department’s coordinator for global COVID-19 response and health security. She played a leading role in the U.S. government’s response to the pandemic.

Smith’s lecture, titled “The Global Pandemic Response: Reflections & Next Steps,” will be livestreamed at colby.edu/livestream.

Dr. Nirav Shah, director of the Maine Center for Disease Control & Prevention, will introduce Smith.

The lecture series aims to bring a “prominent policy leader each year to Colby College for a lecture designed to foster interaction with students, faculty, and members of the greater Waterville community,” according to the college’s release.

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