Microsoft president Smith to discuss technology, diversity and future challenges in visit to Marquette Law School

November 1, 2016

MILWAUKEE — Brad Smith, the president and chief legal officer of Microsoft Corporation, will discuss technology, diversity and other future challenges at a pair of events on Tuesday, Nov. 15, at Marquette University Law School's Eckstein Hall.

Smith will be the featured guest for an "On the Issues with Mike Gousha" from 12:15 to 1:15 p.m. and will present the annual Nies Lecture in Intellectual Property from 4:30 to 5:30 p.m.

Both events are open to the public. Registration for "On the Issues" and the Nies Lecture is required and is available online. Members of the media who are interested in attending should contact Chris Jenkins in the Office of Marketing and Communication at (414) 288-4745 or

Smith is the longtime chief legal officer of Microsoft and, since 2015, the company's president. Smith's team of more than 1,300 professionals working in 55 countries is responsible for the company's legal work, its intellectual property portfolio, patent licensing business, corporate philanthropy, government affairs, public policy, corporate governance and social responsibility work.

In his roles with Microsoft, Smith has engaged with some of the central questions facing the economy and our society. These range from the need for innovation and technology to be more inclusive to the role of education in meeting the workforce needs of the future, the importance of diversity in the workplace and in the legal profession and the balancing of national security and privacy interests.

His lecture, "Future of Technology: Issues for Wisconsin and the World?," will examine our place at the dawn of an era of profound transformation. A new generation of technology innovation is delivering capabilities that promise to expand economic opportunity and address some of humanity's most pressing problems. But cloud computing is creating disruption as well. People question the safety of their communities, the future of their jobs, and the prospects for their children. Smith will discuss a vision of the need to create a cloud-based technology era that is trusted, responsible, and inclusive—a cloud for global good.

The Nies Lecture remembers the Honorable Helen Wilson Nies, who served as a judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit from 1982 until 1996 (chief judge 1990–1994).

Gousha, an award-winning broadcast journalist, is the Law School's distinguished fellow in law and public policy. His "On the Issues" series of conversations with newsmakers supports Marquette Law School's commitment to serve as a modern-day public square for the city of Milwaukee, the state of Wisconsin and beyond.

Through public programming such as the Marquette Law School Poll, debates featuring candidates in significant political races, Gousha's "On the Issues" conversations with newsmakers, public lectures by leading scholars and conferences on significant issues of public importance, the Law School serves as the region's leading venue for serious civil discourse about law and public policy matters.