2012 Domenici Conference Speakers


Linda Alvarado

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Linda Alvarado is president and chief executive officer of Alvarado Construction, a commercial general contractor, construction manager, development, design/build, and property management firm. Based in Denver, the company has offices in several cities. Some of Alvarado’s projects include Sports Authority Field at Mile High, the Phoenix and Colorado Convention Centers and the Denver Aquarium.

In keeping with breaking non-traditional roles, Alvarado made history as the first Hispanic (male or female) owner of a Major League Baseball franchise. As an owner of The Colorado Rockies, her role is also significant as it marked the first time that any woman was involved in a bid for ownership of a Major League Baseball team. Alvarado is a founding member and past chairman of the board of the Denver Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and has served as a commissioner of the White House Initiative for Hispanic Excellence in Education. Her leadership in business, civic and charitable organizations has been acknowledged with numerous awards for achievement. She is an inductee in the National Women’s Hall of Fame in Seneca Falls, NY, and was named one of the 100 Most Influential Hispanics in America by Hispanic Business Magazine.


James Carville

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James Carville is one of America’s best-known political consultants. Carville’s winning streak began in 1986, when he managed the gubernatorial victory of Robert Casey in Pennsylvania. The following year brought Carville to New Jersey, where he guided Frank Lautenberg’s campaign for the U.S. Senate to victory. Carville next managed the successful 1990 gubernatorial campaign of Georgia’s Lt. Gov. Zell Miller. Carville guided Bill Clinton to the presidency in 1992. In 1993, Carville was honored as Campaign Manager of the Year by the American Association of Political Consultants for his leadership of Clinton’s “War Room” at campaign headquarters in Little Rock, Ark.

Carville now focuses on international consulting, and has political clients across the globe. He also is an author, actor, producer, talk-show host, speaker and restaurateur. Carville, (with co-author and wife, Mary Matalin, former assistant to President Bush and counselor to Vice President Cheney), wrote “All’s Fair: Love, War, and Running for President,” which spent eight weeks on The New York Times bestseller list. He now resides in New Orleans, La. with his wife and two daughters.


Sam Donaldson

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Sam Donaldson is an ABC News contributor with more than four decades of experience at the network. He served two appointments as chief White House correspondent covering Presidents Carter, Reagan and Clinton. Donaldson also co-anchored, with Diane Sawyer, “PrimeTime Live” from 1989 until it merged with “20/20” in 1999.

He co-anchored the ABC News Sunday morning broadcast, “This Week With Sam Donaldson & Cokie Roberts,” and hosted “The Sam Donaldson Show – Live in America,” a daily news/talk radio program broadcast on ABC News Radio affiliates across the country. In the three-hour show, Donaldson tackled the day’s top stories, getting comments from newsmakers, engaging listener calls and inserting his own unique experience and opinion. Most recently, Donaldson hosted the 20-minute show “Politics Live” on ABC News Now, an unscripted dialogue with numerous guests discussing the top political news stories of the day.

Karen Hughes

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Karen Hughes serves as Global Vice Chair for Burson-Marsteller, where she utilizes her unique expertise honed over more than 30 years of public policy, communications and political experience. At Burson, she works with clients as diverse as Ford, Johnson & Johnson, Texas Speaker of the House Joe Straus, LIVESTRONG and the George W. Bush Presidential Center.

Previously, Hughes served as Under Secretary of State for Public Diplomacy, where she led the U.S. State Department’s effort to communicate America’s values abroad. She also served as Counselor to President George W. Bush from 2001 to 2002. In this role, she acted as strategic adviser to the president on policy and communications, and managed the White House Offices of Communications, Media Affairs, Speechwriting and Press Secretary. Hughes is a past executive director of the Republican Party of Texas and a former television news reporter for the NBC affiliate in Dallas/Fort Worth. Hughes is a Phi Beta Kappa and summa cum laude graduate of Southern Methodist University. She also is the author of “Ten Minutes from Normal,” a memoir of her experiences working with President Bush.


Michael Hurley

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Michael Hurley served as a senior counsel and team leader on the 9/11 Commission, where he directed its counterterrorism policy investigation and co-authored its best-selling final report. He was National Security Council director for the Balkans, and as a career CIA operations officer he also led agency personnel and U.S. Special Forces in Afghanistan immediately after the 9/11 attacks. Hurley served as a counterterrorism special adviser for Middle East Security to Special Envoy Gen. James Jones and a counterterrorism special adviser to Sen. Sam Nunn, Ted Turner and their Washington, D.C.-based Nuclear Threat Initiative. Hurley also served as a counterterrorism special adviser to the U.S. State Department.

Hurley lectures widely on national security issues in the United States and internationally, and regularly appears on National Public Radio, the BBC, CNN and a range of international broadcast media as a commentator on counterterrorism. He currently serves as president of Team 3i, an international strategy company, and continues to advise the co-chairmen of the 9/11 Commission.


Lester Lyles

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Lester Lyles is a retired Air Force four-star general. During his 35-years of service, he managed large research and development, science and technology organizations, and programs for the Air Force and the Department of Defense. He commanded the Air Force Space and Missile Systems Center, managed the Ballistic Missile Defense Organization, served as the 27th Vice Chief of Staff of the USAF and commanded the Air Force Materiel Command. He retired in 2003.

Today, he serves on several corporate boards,including General Dynamics, KBR, Battelle Laboratory and USAA. He is a member of the President’s Intelligence Advisory Board, the Defense Science Board, the NASA Advisory Council and the Aeronautics and Space Engineering Board of the National Academy of Engineering. Gen. Lyles received a Master of Science degree in mechanical engineering from New Mexico State University.


Susana Martinez

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Susana Martinez was elected governor of New Mexico on Nov. 2, 2010, making her the first Latina governor in United States history. Martinez was the district attorney for the Third Judicial District in Dona Ana County, a position she held for 14 years.

In addition to managing the second largest DA’s office in the state, Martinez personally tried some of the toughest cases, including child abuse and child homicide. She also has a record of battling public corruption. On her watch, the Dona Ana county clerk was convicted of five felony charges of violating the election code, and a municipal court judge was convicted of voter fraud. Martinez has twice been named New Mexico’s Prosecutor of the Year. Martinez was born and raised in the Rio Grande Valley and has made Las Cruces her home since the 1980s. She earned her bachelor’s degree from the University of Texas at El Paso and later earned her law degree from the University of Oklahoma.


Myrtle Potter

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Myrtle Potter is one of America’s foremost healthcare leaders. She is CEO of Myrtle Potter & Company and Myrtle Potter Media. Myrtle Potter & Company, is a healthcare advisory firm whose clients include global life science corporations. Myrtle Potter Media is a consumer healthcare company that provides guidance and resources to the 85 million Americans who have the burden and responsibility for directing and managing the healthcare challenges of their families.

Previously, Potter was president and COO of Genentech, president of Bristol-Myers Squibb’s $4 billion U.S. cardiovascular/metabolic business, and vice president at Merck. Potter serves on the board of directors of Express Scripts and Everyday Health and is a trustee of the University of Chicago. Potter has been named one of FORTUNE magazine’s Top 50 Most Powerful Women in Business three times, a Glamour Magazine Everyday Icon and the Wall Street Journal’s 50 Women to Watch. Potter is a 1980 graduate of the University of Chicago and the mother of two young adults.


The Rev. Robert A. Sirico

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The Rev. Robert Sirico has been active in public policy affairs for more than 20 years. His concern that religious communities knew little about the economic issues surrounding today’s social problems prompted him to found the Acton Institute for the Study of Religion and Liberty in 1990.

Sirico regularly lectures both in this country and around the world, and his writings have appeared in various journals, including The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, Forbes, National Review, The London Financial Times and Crisis. In addition to his duties at the Acton Institute, he has served in parish ministries in Michigan, most recently on the staff of Sacred Heart of Jesus parish in Grand Rapids and helped to found a new community, St. Philip Neri House, also in Grand Rapids. His latest book is entitled “Defending the Free Market: The Moral Case for a Free Economy.”


Heather Wilson

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Heather Wilson is a candidate for the U.S. Senate in New Mexico in the campaign to succeed retiring Sen. Jeff Bingaman. At age 17, Wilson enrolled in the U.S. Air Force Academy in only the third class to include women. She graduated in 1982. A Rhodes Scholar, Wilson earned her master’s and doctoral degrees in international relations from Oxford University in England. In 1989, Wilson became director for European defense policy and arms control on the National Security Council staff at the White House under Pres. George H.W. Bush.

Wilson was the owner of a successful small business in Albuquerque until 1995, when she was asked to take charge of New Mexico’s Children, Youth and Families Department. Wilson served in the U.S. House of Representatives from 1998 until 2009, and was a senior member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee and the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence. She received Distinguished Public Service Awards from the CIA and the Director of National Intelligence upon leaving Congress.