Biden to Speak at Duquesne University Event Honoring Dan Rooney

Duquesne University and The Ireland Funds will host Joe Biden, 47th Vice President of the United States, at an event honoring the life of former Pittsburgh Steelers Chairman and U.S. Ambassador to Ireland Dan Rooney on March 16.

Biden will serve as the keynote speaker at Slainte! Celebrating the Life and Legacy of Dan Rooney, a day-long symposium that explores Rooney's impact on Pittsburgh, Ireland, the Catholic Church and the National Football League. A Duquesne alumnus, Rooney died last year at the age of 84.

While Biden was vice president, Rooney served as the Obama administration's ambassador to Ireland from 2009-2012. During his tenure, he became the first U.S. ambassador to visit all 32 counties in Ireland.

"Dan Rooney was an extraordinary member of the Duquesne family," said Duquesne University President Ken Gormley. "Through his personal, business and civic leadership, he inspired me personally and generations of our students and alumni. The symposium will reflect upon Dan's accomplishments and salute and celebrate his impact on the lives of people in Pittsburgh and throughout the world."

The event will include panel discussions focused on various aspects of Rooney's career, exploring his impact as U.S. ambassador to Ireland and in creating the NFL's Rooney Rule, a policy requiring teams to interview minority candidates for head coaching and senior football operations jobs.

Event moderators and panelists will include Pittsburgh Steelers Head Coach Mike Tomlin; NFL Today Analyst and former Steelers Head Coach Bill Cowher; former CIA and NSA director General Michael V. Hayden; Worldwide Ireland Funds President and CEO Kieran McLoughlin; NFL Vice President Jeff Pash; and former Steelers players Charlie Batch and Rocky Bleier.

The symposium is hosted by Duquesne University and The Ireland Funds, which was co-founded by Rooney. The full agenda of the day's events and speakers can be found at

Media are invited to cover the event. Media are asked to RSVP and arrange parking by calling Ken Walters at 412.396.1154 or 412.417.8156 (cell). While not open to the public, the event will be simulcast live at:

Duquesne University

Founded in 1878, Duquesne is consistently ranked among the nation's top Catholic universities for its award-winning faculty and horizon-expanding education. A campus of nearly 9,500 graduate and undergraduate students, Duquesne prepares students by having them work alongside faculty to discover and reach their goals. The University's academic programs, community service, and commitment to equity and opportunity in the Pittsburgh region have earned national acclaim. 

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