(Posted April 23, 2007)

HUNTINGDON, Pa. -- Grover Norquist, founder of the political organization Americans for Tax Reform and one of the most influential members of the modern American conservative movement, will lecture at Juniata College on \"The Future of the Republican Party,\" at 7 p.m., Thursday, April 26 in Alumni Hall in the Brumbaugh Academic Center on the Juniata campus. The lecture is free and open to the public. Norquist founded the group Americans for Tax Reform in 1985, but he quickly move beyond the arcane world of tax policy as a major player in introducing conservative politics onto the national platform of the Republican Party. He is often portrayed in the media as a behind-the-scenes policy expert and fund-raiser. Indeed, conservative humorist P.J. O\'Rourke described him as \"Tom Paine crossed with Lee Atwater, plus a soupcon of Madame Defarge.\" The Americans for Tax Reform have organized the Taxpayer Protection Pledge, which asks all candidates for federal and state office to commit themselves in writing to oppose all tax increases. He also serves on the board of directors of the national Rifle Association and the American Conservative Union. He is a contributing editor for American Spectator magazine and also wrote the book \"Rock the House,\" an analysis of the 1994 elections. Norquist also is one of the most effective Republican fund-raisers in national elections. Media profiles generally describe him as being one of the first conservative fund-raisers to give his support to the presidential candidacy of George W. Bush. He earned a bachelor\'s degree in economics from Harvard College in 1978 and later earned a master\'s in business administration from Harvard Business School. After leaving Harvard Business School, he became executive director of the National Taxpayers Union and the National College Republicans organization, holding both positions until 1983. Norquist was one of the backstage advisers for 1990s-era Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich and helped write the 1994 Contract with America. Norquist regularly gives talks on college campuses across the nation. He is president of the American Society of Competitiveness and has served as a commissioner on the Advisory Commission for Electronic Commerce and the National Commission on Restructuring the Internal Revenue Service.

Contact April Feagley at feaglea@juniata.edu or (814) 641-3131 for more information.