“Iowa, Heroin, and Afghanistan”
This presentation will focus on the connection between U.S counter-narcotics policy, the deteriorating rule of law situation in Afghanistan, and Iowa’s surge in opioid and heroin abuse.
Ron McMullen, currently the University of Iowa’s Ambassador in Residence, served as U.S. Ambassador to the State of Eritrea. Ron has over 30 years of diplomatic experience and has lived, worked, or traveled in 98 countries. In Burma he worked closely with Nobel Peace laureate Aung San Suu Kyi and pro-democracy groups. While posted in Fiji he helped prevent civil conflict after an armed takeover of parliament. He was shot at during a riot in Sri Lanka and helped train mongooses to detect heroin. He survived a voodoo curse in the Dominican Republic and took Hillary Clinton on a tour of South Africa’s Robben Island with Nelson Mandela.
Between foreign assignments, Ron served three years as Visiting Professor at the Military Academy at West Point, where he taught International Relations and Comparative Politics. He was Diplomat-In-Residence at the University of Texas at Austin 2010-2012. He has authored a number of scholarly works and is a three-time recipient of the State Department’s Superior Honor Award. In 2015 he received the University of Iowa’s Honors Program Teaching Award. A native of Northwood, Iowa and a graduate of Drake University, he earned his doctorate in political science from the University of Iowa.