The UN Charter: Blueprint for a Better World?

Ambassador Charles R. (Dick) Bowers


Summer Luncheon and Lecture
11:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
Belmont United Methodist Church
Corner of 21st Ave. S. and Acklen
Nashville, TN
Cost: $20.00 (student scholarships available)

The event will include a reception; Greetings from the Mayor of Metro Nashville, H.H. Karl Dean; lunch; presentation of a lifelong achievement award to Louis Baird Short; and the speaker, Ambassador Bowers.

Ambassador Charles R. (Dick) Bowers is a Nashville resident who was a career member of the U.S. Foreign Service and served as U.S. Ambassador to Bolivia from 1991 to 1994.

Dick Bowers began his diplomatic career in 1967 and served as a diplomatic officer in American embassies in Panama, Poland, Singapore and Germany. He also served a number of tours of duty in the Department of State in several capacities including as Executive Assistant to the Under Secretary for Management, Executive Director of the Bureau of European Affairs and special assistant to the Assistant Secretary for Educational and Cultural Affairs.

Following his service as Ambassador, Dick retired from the Foreign Service. The following year, in 1996, he began his next adventures. He hiked the full length of the Appalachian Trail and climbed the highest peaks in all 50 states. Well acquainted by then with America’s natural beauty, Dick chose to make his home in the most stunning area, middle Tennessee.  He and his wife Kay have lived in Nashville since 2006.

Karl Dean was elected September 11, 2007 as the sixth mayor of Metropolitan Government of Nashville and Davidson County.

Adopting as his priorities education, economic development and livability, the Mayor moved quickly in all areas. Examples include his comprehensive Blueprint for Educational Reform and a Poverty Reduction Initiative Plan.

In 2008, the Mayor set up a Green Ribbon Committee on Environmental Sustainability, setting a goal to make Nashville the “greenest city in the Southeast.” The Mayor is working now to implement its recommendations. He  is also a signatory to the US Mayor’s Climate Protection Agreement, an effort to reduce the emissions of cities to pre-1990 levels.

Dean was elected three times as Nashville’s Public Defender (1990 to 1999) and then as Metro Law Director (1998 to 2007).  He and his wife Ann Davis, a Nashville native, have three children.

Ms. Louise Baird Short was born on  January 17, 1906 in Clarksville, Indiana, just across the Ohio River from Louisville, Kentucky, the oldest of eight children. Her family pioneered settlement in Kentucky right after the Revolution, and her father started a dairy and wholesale ice cream business in Clarksville.

Louise attended the University of Louisville and graduated from Louisville Normal Teacher’s College.  She met her husband, Roy Hunter Short at college, married in 1926 and moved to Nashville in 1944.

Anticipating the need to generate support in the United States for the United Nations, Dr. D.F. Fleming, a professor of international relations at Vanderbilt University, called together a group of men and women to his office in early 1945 to begin the process of establishing the Nashville United Nations Association. Within a year, the Nashville Chapter boasted almost 200 members, one of whom was Louise Baird Short. Ms. Short has been an active member of the UNA-USA since January 1946, just three months after the UN was established. She recalls both the excitement over its founding and the suspicion of many people that the UN would jeopardize US sovereignty and foster a one-world government.

She realized early on that one of the most important services she and others could provide was education of the public about the true purposes and goals of the United Nations in order to demonstrate that there was much to celebrate and nothing to fear. To achieve this, she taught classes about the UN in her Nashville home.

When asked why she supported the United Nations from its inception, she replied: “There had been too many wars. We needed to have a lasting peace, and we thought that the UN would bring the end to wars. We thought that it would be far better to talk it out than to fight it out.”

And now — does she still believe that the UN is important?  Absolutely. Louise explained:  “The United Nations gives us an inner idea of how people think and what they do, and it keeps us a world family. We know that what happens in one part of a family affects us all. We need to stay acquainted with each family member and never to stop talking.”