A Conversation with Paul Ryan, former Speaker of the House

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Memorial Union, Shannon Hall
@ 6:00 pm - 7:00 pm
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Former Speaker of the House Paul Ryan will join Director Susan Webb Yackee to discuss policy and the U.S. economy, bridging political divides, and answer pre-submitted questions.

Reserve ticketsSubmit a question for the Q&A

About the event

  • Tickets for the postponed February event will not be valid. Ticketholders will have to register again to attend.
  • A livestream of the event will be available.
  • A recording will be shared after the event on the La Follette School’s YouTube page

This event is generously funded by the Kohl Initiative and American Family Insurance. Please note this event will be photographed and video recorded. Images and other content may be used to promote the La Follette School of Public Affairs in the future.


Speaker Ryan will sit down with La Follette School Director Susan Webb Yackee and share his take on current issues related to:

  • Public policy and the American economy
  • Bridging political divides
  • Lessons from his time in Congress
  • Politics on the national and Wisconsin level
  • The 2024 presidential election

Paul Ryan

During his tenure as Speaker of the House from 2015 to 2019, Ryan spearheaded efforts to make changes affecting the tax code, national defense, domestic energy production, the opioid epidemic, and the criminal justice system. Known for his efforts to control government spending, Ryan played a major role in proposals that advocated for federal tax cuts, the privatization of Medicare, and Medicaid program reforms. In 2012, Ryan was selected to serve as Governor Mitt Romney’s Vice-Presidential nominee. Ryan was first elected to Congress at age 28 and represented Wisconsin’s First District for two decades.

In 2019, Ryan launched the American Idea Foundation, a nonprofit organization that aims to expand economic opportunity by partnering with local organizations and academics to advance evidence-based public policies. A native of Janesville, Wisconsin, he is a professor of practice at the University of Notre Dame and a visiting fellow in the practice of public policy at the American Enterprise Institute.

Policymaker in Residence

The Policymaker in Residence program is funded by the Kohl Initiative, which was created with a $10 million gift from former U.S. Sen. Herb Kohl. As one of the key goals of the Kohl Initiative, the program provides students an opportunity to learn from seasoned public servants. One of the main goals of the Policymaker in Residence program is to provide students, faculty, and staff with opportunities to learn about real-world examples of when evidence-based policymaking has successfully impacted society’s most pressing issues and when it has fallen short.


La Follette School of Public Affairs



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Former Speaker Paul Ryan speaking at podium