Leon Panetta, Karl Rove Head Desert Town Hall Speaker List

Speaker series also includes Ling sisters and Dr. Ben Carson

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Former U.S. Secretary of Defense and CIA Director Leon Panetta and Karl Rove, former senior advisor to President George W. Bush, headline the 2014 Desert Town Hall, the desert’s speaker series.

Also scheduled to speak are journalists Lisa Ling and Laura Ling and their fight for one sister to gain freedom from North Korea, and Dr. Ben Carson, a renowned pediatric neurosurgeon, inspiring storyteller and New York Times best-selling author.

All four evening events will be held at the Renaissance Esmeralda Resort & Spa in Indian Wells and begin at 5 p.m.

In order, the speakers are:

Jan. 28: Leon Panetta, one of the nation's most respected bi-partisan leaders in recent history. Panetta has guided U.S. intelligence, defense and economic strategies over the past four decades.

Feb. 13: Lisa Ling and Laura Ling will detail the harrowing experience of one sister's arrest in North Korea and another sister's fight to set her free thanks to help from former President Bill Clinton.

March 6: Karl Rove, political strategist, former deputy chief of staff to President George W. Bush, best-selling author, Fox News contributor and Wall Street journalist columnist. With more than two decades of experience in the political arena, Rove's provacative and robust knowledge of the major political issues of the day have made him one of the most sought-after political pundits of our time.

March 24: Dr. Ben Carson recounts his remarkable journey from tough, inner-city youth to history-making neurosurgeon.

"Our board focuses on bringing the finest speakers around the world to Indian Wells each year," said Desert Hall Town Hall Board President Brian Harnik. "We are also proud to host Youth Town Hall, which connects hundreds of young people from throughout the Coachella Valley with world leaders, inspirational speakers and provacative thinkers. This year should be another success."

As part of its philanthropic mission, Desert Forum, Inc. invites 150 Coachella Valley high school students to attend each lecture. The students participate in a hosted evening where the featured speaker visits with the youth.
Series tickets are on sale for all four events, priced at $1,150 for a reserved seat with dinner, $500 for a reserved seat, and $250 for an unreserved seat.

For information, call (760) 610-2852 or visit www.DesertTownHall.org

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