“Start-up Nation” author Dan Senor to speak at the Nott

Publication Date

Middle East and Persian Gulf geopolitical expert Dan Senor, co-author of the best-selling book, Start-Up Nation: The Story of Israel’s Economic Miracle, will speak at the Nott Memorial on Sunday, April 21, at 7 p.m.

His talk is free and open to the public.

An adjunct senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations, Senor was the chief spokesman to the Coalition Provisional Authority in Iraq during the George W. Bush administration. He also served as a Pentagon adviser to U.S. Central Command in Qatar and as a foreign policy and communications aide in the U.S. Senate.

Most recently, he was the senior foreign policy adviser to Mitt Romney.

“Hillel has been interested in sponsoring a lecture from Dan Senor for a couple years now, and the opportunity arose through Union networking and connections,” said Ariel Gomberg, Union College Hillel member and president of U for Israel, two of the event’s co-sponsors.

Gomberg noted that Curt Myers ’15, a member of U for Israel, was a key connection. He worked on Romney’s presidential campaign with his mother, Beth Myers, Romney’s chief of staff and top campaign adviser.

Senor’s book, Start-up Nation, written with Saul Singer, examines Israel’s flourishing entrepreneurial economy. It addresses how a small, young nation without natural resources, surrounded by enemies and in a constant state of war since its founding, “produces more start-up companies than large, peaceful, stable nations like Japan, China, India, Korea, Canada and the United Kingdom,” Gomberg said.

The authors make the point that while many countries suffered tremendously in the 2008 economic collapse, Israel continues to thrive, and that today, it has more companies on the tech-oriented NASDAQ stock exchange than any country outside the U.S., including more than all of Europe and India combined.

“Mr. Senor will explain the Israeli model of economic success,” Gomberg said. “He will discuss the diverse range of Israeli start-ups and how they created solutions to some of the world’s most pressing problems.

“His book covers a range of subjects that most students can relate to, including engineering, digital media, communications, politics and economics. We can apply the techniques and thinking observed in Israel’s entrepreneurs to build innovative organizations of our own that boost the American business infrastructure.”

Senor has been a frequent contributor to Fox News, The Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, the Washington Post, Time and other publications. He is married to television news personality Campbell Brown.

Before his campus talk, he will have dinner at Hale House with students, faculty and members of the co-sponsoring groups, which also include the Department of Economics, the Economics Club and the Jewish Federation of Northeastern New York.

Following his lecture, there will be a reception in Everest Lounge. For more information, contact Ariel Gomberg ’13.

Senor's visit comes in the middle of Hillel's Holocaust remembrance series, which includes a number of events.