The World Food Prize Foundation

Former U.S. Ambassador Kenneth M. Quinn to speak about “The Last Days of Saigon” at Inaugural Ambassador’s Lecture Series



Press Contact:
Nicole Barreca, Communications and Events Coordinator 
515.245.3735 (direct), 563.271.2995 (cell), or


Former U.S. Ambassador Kenneth M. Quinn to speak about “The Last Days of Saigon”
at Inaugural Ambassador’s Lecture Series

The event on April 21 will honor the 40th anniversary of the end of the Vietnam War.

(Des Moines, Iowa) April 20, 2015 – Amb. Kenneth M. Quinn, president of The World Food Prize Foundation, who served six years in Vietnam during the war, and then as a member of the National Security Council at the White House, will give a speech titled “The Last Days of Saigon” on Tuesday, April 21, at 6 p.m. The event will commemorate the upcoming 40th anniversary of the Fall of Saigon, which occurred on April 30, 1975.

The event is invitation-only, but there will be a media availability at 5 p.m. Media are also welcome to attend the speech, which will start at 6 p.m. It will take place at the World Food Prize Hall of Laureates, 100 Locust Street, Des Moines.

In his role on the National Security Council, Amb. Quinn traveled to Vietnam right before the end of the war, and was involved in the evacuation of U.S. Embassy staff and thousands of Vietnamese refugees. In his speech, he will share his unique experiences and recount the drama of those final days.

"April 1975 marked two extraordinary events: The coming to power in Cambodia of the Khmer Rouge—the  worst genocidal mass murdering organization of the second half of the 20th century—and  the tumultuous and tragic end of the Vietnam War, the epic event of my generation, which occurred with the military conquest of South Vietnam by the North Vietnamese Army. I had the personally painful experience of being part of these two historic, and in many ways tragic, events. These events and the people who were affected by them deserve to be remembered at this moment in time," Amb. Quinn said. 

Media: Please contact Crystal Harris if you plan to attend: 515-245-3731 or

Related Link: Read Amb. Quinn’s column as published in The Des Moines Register here.



Dr. Kenneth M. Quinn, former U.S. Ambassador to the Kingdom of Cambodia, assumed the leadership of The World Food Prize Foundation on January 1, 2000, following his retirement from the State Department after a 32 year career in the Foreign Service. For his full bio, please visit


The World Food Prize was created in 1987 by Nobel Peace Prize winner Dr. Norman Borlaug, and is the foremost international award recognizing individuals whose achievements have advanced human development by increasing the quality, quantity or availability of food in the world. The World Food Prize annually hosts the Borlaug Dialogue international symposium, which draws over 1,200 people from 60 countries to discuss cutting-edge issues in food security, and several youth education programs to inspire the next generation to explore careers in agriculture and fighting hunger. More at

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