News Details

Retired Four-Star Gen. Keys to give Purdue lecture on energy and national security

April 11, 2012

His talk, "Strengthening America's Economy & National Security: A Call to Reduce U.S.  Dependence on Fossil Fuels," is at 3:30 p.m. April 19 in Stewart Center, Room 206. The lecture is free and open to the public. Keys also will meet with university administrators, researchers, faculty members, local elected officials, and state legislators and policymakers during his Purdue visit.

"Gen. Keys will discuss the urgent economic and national security risks associated with the nation's overdependence on fossil fuels during this interactive public forum," said Maureen McCann, director of Purdue's Energy Center and a biological sciences professor. "He also will highlight opportunities for Hoosiers to help lead the nation in building a safer and more prosperous future by diversifying our energy resources, moving to clean energy and using energy more efficiently."

Keys is a member of CNA's Military Advisory Board (MAB), a blue-ribbon panel of some of the nation's most highly decorated retired admirals and generals who study issues critical to national security. The CNA MAB has produced reports on America's energy posture that have served as guidance documents for the Department of Defense and members of Congress.

The CNA MAB Advisory Board presented its most recent report on energy and national security to the Senate Energy and Armed Services Committee staffs and the House Defense Energy Security Caucus.

About Gen. Ron Keys

Keys retired from the Air Force in November 2007 after completing a career of more than 40 years. His last assignment was as commander, Air Combat Command, the Air Force's largest major command, consisting of more than 1,200 aircraft, 27 wings, 17 bases and 200 operating locations worldwide with 105,000 personnel. Under his leadership, ACC organized and stood up the Air Force's Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) Wing and first Network Warfare Wing.

Keys holds a bachelor of science degree from Kansas State University and a master's degree in business administration from Golden Gate University. In addition to numerous professional military education courses, he has participated in the National and International Security Seminar, JFK School of Government, Harvard, as well as Leadership at the Peak, Center for Creative Leadership, in Colorado Springs.

In September 2007, he received the Air Force Association's most prestigious annual award, The H.H. Arnold Award, as the military member who had made the most significant contribution to national defense.

Upon retirement, he also was selected as the Air Force Reserve Officer Corps first AFROTC Distinguished Alumni award recipient. He is a command pilot with more than 4,000 flying hours in fighter aircraft, including more than 300 hours of combat time.

About Purdue Energy Lectures

Led by Discovery Park's Energy Center, the Energy Lectures are designed to increase the understanding of specific energy challenges and to promote a strong, interdisciplinary-driven Purdue energy research community across colleges and departments.

The Energy Center is part of the university's Global Sustainability Initiative, which was launched in Discovery Park to coordinate Purdue's research efforts in sustainability challenges such as climate change, energy, the environment and water.

Discovery Park, which is celebrating its 10th anniversary this month, is the heart of large-scale interdisciplinary research and innovation at Purdue, building on the university's strengths in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.

Media Contacts: Phillip Fiorini, 765-496-3133,

                               Carina Daniels, 415-453-0430,

Sources:  Maureen McCann, 765-496-1779,

                   Pankaj Sharma, managing director of Energy Center, 765-496-7452,

Note to Journalists: A media availability session for Gen. Ron Keys is planned for 2:30-3 p.m. April 19. Reporters who want to interview Gen. Keys before his talk can participate by contacting Phillip Fiorini, senior writer for Discovery Park and Purdue External Relations, at 765-496-3133,

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