November 21, 2008
FDR’s Grandson, Curtis Roosevelt, Comes to Webster Dec. 10 to Celebrate 60th Anniversary of Human Rights Declaration
ST. LOUIS, Nov. 21, 2008 – Curtis Roosevelt, grandson of Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt and former UN Secretariat staff member, will speak at Webster University Wednesday, Dec. 10 in honor of the 60th anniversary of the International Declaration of Human Rights at 7 p.m. in the Community Music School Concert Hall, 535 Garden Ave., Webster Groves, Missouri. The event is free and open to the public.
Following World War II, the newly formed United Nations established the Commission on Human Rights, led by Eleanor Roosevelt. The commission created an international bill of human rights to establish a new norm for international conflict resolution and create a new respect for basic human rights. The declaration was endorsed Dec. 10, 1948. Although Curtis Roosevelt was a child at the time, he accompanied his grandmother to Paris where the final draft was reviewed. He also lived in the White House during much of FDR’s presidency. During his remarks, Roosevelt will recount his memories and experiences as well as discuss the role Eleanor played in the State Department and her influence on Franklin.
Following the event, Roosevelt will be signing copies of his book, "Too Close to the Sun: Growing up in the Shadow of my Grandparents, Franklin and Eleanor" (Perseus Publishing, Oct. 2008).
Curtis Roosevelt, born Curtis Roosevelt Dall, is the second eldest child of Anna Eleanor Roosevelt and the oldest grandson of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt and Eleanor Roosevelt. He graduated from St. John's Northwestern Military Academy in Delafield, Wisconsin in 1948, served two years in the United States Army and obtained his masters degree from the School of Government and Public Law at Columbia University. Between 1956 and 1964, he worked for a number of schools and committees including: The National Citizens Commission for the Public Schools, The New School for Social Research, Columbia University, and The United States Committee for the United Nations. Beginning in 1964, Roosevelt held various positions in the international civil service sector Secretariat of the United Nations in New York City until 1983. Roosevelt served as principal at the Dartington College of Arts in Devon, England and also became an occasional writer on American politics for El Mundo and Le Figaro newspapers in Spain. Currently he is a visiting professor at the Geneva School of Diplomacy and International Affairs. In 2007, he received the Eleanor Roosevelt Val-Kill Medal for his work in international civil service. He lives in the south of France with his wife.
Webster University is celebrating the 60th anniversary of the UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights with “The Year of International Human Rights,” a yearlong series of community events and academic study that highlight human rights. Events such as a spring conference on human rights are also being planned. For more information or for event details, go to: www.webster.edu/rights.
Media inquiries concerning Curtis Roosevelt’s visit to Webster may be directed to Christine Wells Eason, director, media relations, Office of Public Affairs, Webster University, at 314-968-5976, 314-565-5745 or at email@example.com.
With its home campus in St. Louis, Webster University (www.webster.edu) is a worldwide institution committed to delivering high-quality learning experiences that transform students for global citizenship and individual excellence. Founded in 1915, Webster offers undergraduate and graduate degree programs through five schools and colleges, and a global network of more than 100 campuses. Its 20,000-plus student population represents almost 150 nationalities. The University’s core values include excellence in teaching, joining theory and practice, small class sizes, and educating students to be lifelong independent learners, fully prepared to participate in an increasingly international society.
Since opening its first campus overseas in Geneva in 1978, Webster has become a recognized leader and innovator in global education, with an international presence that now includes campuses in London; Vienna; Amsterdam and Leiden, the Netherlands; Shanghai, Shenzhen and Chengdu, China; and Bangkok and Cha-am, Thailand. Webster also has educational partnerships with universities in Mexico and Japan.