Former President George W. Bush at the podium as (from left) First Lady Michelle Obama, President Barack Obama, former First Lady Barbara Bush, former President George H. W. Bush, former First Lady Laura Bush, former President Bill Clinton, former First Lady Hillary Clinton, former President Jimmy Carter, and former First Lady Rosalyn Carter look on.
The dedication of the George W. Bush Presidential Center on Thursday, April 25, brought members of the prestigious so-called Presidents’ Club to SMU.
President Barack Obama joined former Presidents Jimmy Carter, George H. W. Bush, Bill Clinton and George W. Bush to dedicate the new Bush Center.
The event drew more than 10,000 invited guests, including former British Prime Minister Tony Blair and other former heads of state. More than 500 members of the SMU community watched the simulcast in McFarlin Auditorium or at an outdoor viewing screen.
The dedication also was streamed live at BushCenter.org. A video of the dedication ceremony is available at bushcenter.org/live.
In his remarks, Bush thanked SMU, noting that President R. Gerald Turner runs “a fantastic university.” He said SMU students are “awesome,” drawing cheers from students in the audience.
President Obama remarked that the dedication was a “Texas-sized party.” He said all former presidents are a “support group,” and noted Bush’s “incredible strength and resolve” after the attacks of 9-11. Referring to what all former presidents have in common, he said, “We all love this country and we do our best.”
Located on a 23-acre site on the east side of campus, the Bush Center houses the Presidential Library and Museum and the George W. Bush Institute. The Library and Museum will open to the public May 1.
The Bush Center has designated Monday, April 29, as a special library visitation day for SMU faculty, staff and students.