Forkenbrock Series on Public Policy


Energy Challenges for the Next American President

LR2 Van Allen Hall
Wednesday, October 19th, 2016 5:00 PM to 6:30 PM
Jay Hakes in a suit

The Public Policy Center co-sponsored a lecture by Jay Hakes as part of the Run Up to the 2016 Election series. Hakes presented "Energy Challenges for the Next American President" from 5 to 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 19 in LR 2 Van Allen Hall. The lecture was part of the University of Iowa Ida Cordelia Beam Distinguished Visiting Professorship Program. Hakes is a scholar of U.S. energy policy and a long-time political adviser, analyst and strategist. 

Hakes' visit was co-hosted by the Departments of History, Earth and Environmental Sciences, and Political Science, in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. His lecture was part of the PPC's Run Up to the 2016 Election series

More information about the Ida Beam Program is available here

Hakes has a long record of high-level government service. A political scientist by training, Hakes joined the Carter Administration’s Department of the Interior in 1977 and rose to the positions of Executive Secretary and Assistant to the Secretary. He then became Special Assistant in the Office of the President before moving on, after Carter’s defeat in 1980, to the positions of Energy Office Director and Chief of Staff for Florida Governor, Bob Graham. During 1993-2000, under President Bill Clinton, Hakes served as the head of the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), the statistical arm of the Department of Energy. He led the transformation of the EIA into one of the worlds’ most respected sources of energy data and forecasts, with a reputation for professional competence, transparency and political independence. In 2000, Hakes left the EIA to become Director of the Jimmy Carter Presidential Library and Museum, which he led until his retirement in 2013. In this role, he worked closely with President Carter to position the library as one of the world’s leading archives for scholars and students studying the upheavals of the 1970s, especially those relating to oil and energy. During 2010-2011, Hakes took a brief leave from the Carter Library to serve as Director for Policy and Research on President Barack Obama’s National Commission on the BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill and Offshore Drilling. The Commission’s final report, which Hakes was instrumental in shaping, has been widely acclaimed as the definitive study on the background, causes and implications of the disaster.

In addition to his government leadership experience, Hakes has established himself as one of the foremost experts on the history of energy and a highly regarded commentator on energy policy. His 2008 book, A Declaration of Energy Independence: How Freedom from Foreign Oil Can Improve National Security, Our Economy, and the Environment (John Wiley & Sons) is an authoritative history of U.S. energy policy since the 1970s and a prescription for workable solutions to the nation’s energy dilemmas. He is currently finishing two books. One is entitled The Moral Equivalent of War? Nixon, Ford, Carter, and America’s Great Energy Crises. This will be the first study to incorporate the latest declassified government documents on the oil shocks of the 1970s and will likely become the authoritative history of the intricate and changing relationship between domestic energy policy and U.S. foreign policy toward the Middle East. The other book is a history of the climate change debate in the United States, dating to the earliest discussions in the 1960s and drawing on an abundance of original archival research. Currently, Hakes travels widely in the United States and around the world to lecture on energy issues, and he is a regular contributor to the energy news and opinion website, Real Clear Energy,

Individuals with disabilities are encouraged to attend all University of Iowa-sponsored events. If you are a person with a disability who requires an accommodation in order to participate in this program, please contact Leslie Gannon at (319) 335-6817 or