Senator Mitchell PhotoThe Mitchell Series brings a prominent policy leader to campus each spring for a lecture and a dinner designed to foster interaction with students, faculty, and members of the greater Waterville community while honoring former U.S. Senator, statesman, international negotiator, and Waterville native George Mitchell.

The series was launched by generous contributions from Mitchell family members and friends of the senator who were eager to bring a high-profile event to the Waterville area. They include Paul Mitchell, the senator’s brother and a lifelong businessman in Waterville; his son Bill Mitchell, also a Waterville businessman and the senator’s nephew; and three of Senator Mitchell’s cousins, Bob Baldacci, a Portland consultant and brother of Maine’s former governor, and Waterville attorneys John and Mark Nale.

The 2019 George J. Mitchell Distinguished International Lecture will be given this year by: José Miguel Vivanco, Executive Director, Americas Division, Human Rights Watch

Meet and Greet with José Miguel Vivanco

Monday, April 15 | 7:00 pm | Grossman 209

Populism and Double Standards: Growing Challenges to Human Rights in the Americas

Monday, April 15 | 7:00 pm | SSWAC, Parker-Reed


Over the last 70 years, the international community has reached a key consensus on human rights issues, ranging from torture to freedom of expression, from women’s rights to accountability. Yet the rise of populist leaders across the globe poses a dangerous threat to such progress. Vivanco will explore how populist leaders such as Trump, Erdogan, and Maduro undermine human rights.  What implications has this had for regional migration as those disenfranchised from basic rights seek asylum?  What can civil society do to protect basic rights achieved over the last decades?

Please join us to hear José Miguel Vivanco, one of the nation’s experts on human rights in Latin America.



Senator George J. Mitchell Distinguished International Lectures (in reverse chronological order):

World Bank CEO Kristalina Georgieva (May 6, 2018)
The Role of the World Bank: Why We Dare to Confront Global Challenges.

U.S. Senator for Maine Angus King (April 19, 2017)
Lessons in Foreign Policy, from North Korea to Syria and back to Washington

Former U.S. Senator George J. Mitchell (March 15, 2016)

U.S. Senator for Maine Susan Collins (April 9, 2015)
Why Moderation and Bipartisanship Lead to Progress

Former U.S. Senator Thomas A. Daschle (April 16, 2014)

Former U.S. Senator Alan K. Simpson (April 10, 2013)

U.S. Department of State Legal Adviser Harold Koh
International Lawyering for the U.S. Government in an Era of Smart Power (Feb. 26, 2012)

U.S. Deputy Secretary of State James Steinberg
American Leadership and International Cooperation in the 21st Century (Oct. 21, 2010)

Senator George J. Mitchell, U.S. special envoy to the Middle East
Conflict Resolution: George Mitchell Reflects on Personal Experiences (Oct. 22, 2009)

The Honorable Madeleine Albright, former U.S. Secretary of State (Oct. 25, 2007)

President Mary Robinson, former president of Ireland and former U.N. High Commissioner of Human Rights
The Challenge of Human Rights in the 21st Century (Oct. 12, 2006)

Senator George J. Mitchell
America’s Role in the 21st Century (Sept. 22, 2005)