Keynote Speaker J. C. Watts
Monday, August 2, 2004 * 8:15 a.m.-10:00 a.m
Chicago, Illinois, "the Windy City," will host the American Correctional Association's 134th Congress of Correction July 31-August 5, 2004 at the Navy Pier Chicago Convention Center. Prepare to be "blown away" by all the festivities and social gatherings during this educational six-day event.
In 1830, lots were sold to finance construction of what would become the Illinois and Michigan Canal, connecting Chicago with the Mississippi River. Three years later, with a booming population of 350, the town of Chicago was incorporated, drawing its name from an Indian word meaning "strong" or "great."
Animal lovers, adults and children alike, will enjoy the Lincoln Park Zoo, with more than 35 acres of exciting exhibits, including a children's zoo and more than 1,200 animals, reptiles and birds. Sea lovers will enjoy the John G. Shedd Aquarium, where trained professional divers hand-feed sharks and other undersea reef creatures while they swim with them in a 90,000 gallon tank. There are sea otters, sea anemones, beluga whales, dolphins, harbor seals, penguins and creatures from all over the world.
These are merely the highlights of the 134th Congress of Correction, as Chicago is such a visual feast of fun activities, offering some of the finest restaurants and many, many attractions. Also, during this six-day event, attendees will reflect on this year's Congress theme, Reaching Beyond Borders: Reshaping Justice Systems, as they engage in enlightening and challenging workshops, participate in theme-based social events while searching for the right information that will help them improve their facilities and/or agencies and listen to a world-renowned, riveting keynote speaker during its Opening Session.
J. C. Watts, former U.S. Congressman and football hero, will be the keynote speaker at the American Correctional Association's 134th Congress of Correction Opening Session. This extraordinary, charismatic speaker will inspire attendees with a motivational address that will help them in their career endeavors.
Born Julius Caesar Watts, Jr. on November 18, 1957, in Eufaula, Oklahoma, he was the fifth of six children of Buddy and Helen Watts. Watts graduated from Eufaula High School in 1976 and attended the University of Oklahoma until his graduation in 1981 with a B.A. in journalism. While at the University of Oklahoma, Watts was quarterback for the Sooners, leading them to two consecutive Big Eight Championships and Orange Bowl victories. He was voted the Most Valuable Player in the 1980 and 1981 Orange Bowl wins over Florida State. From 1981 to 1986, he was a starting quarterback in the Canadian Football League and was voted the Most Valuable Player of the Grey Cup, the CFL's Super Bowl, his rookie season. Following his football career, he would be inducted into the Orange Bowl Hall of Honor in 1992.
After being elected to the House of Representatives in 1994, fellow congressmen quickly recognized the leadership qualities of Watts and elected him to serve as the chairman of the House Republican Conference, the fourth-highest position in the House, in 1998. He was re-elected to this leadership position, unopposed, in 2000.
During the Opening Session, Watts will show attendees that no matter what their particular situation, they too can be a leader. Replete with anecdotes and personal stories, Watts' powerful message of self-determination and teamwork will take attendees to the next level of awareness.
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