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Frank Church Institute

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The Frank Church Institute was established in 1982 as the Frank Church Chair of Public Affairs at Boise State University, to honor the achievements and to carry forward the principles of one of Idaho’s most distinguished native sons, Senator Frank Church.

The Institute, which is housed within the College of Social Sciences and Public Affairs at Boise State University, emphasizes to its students those ideas which the Senator held dear—a strong belief in the rule of law, eloquence firmly based on reason, and an unwavering faith in the American political system. The Frank Church Institute’s mission is to “promote civic engagement and understanding of public policy with focus on foreign relations.” The Institute is non-partisan, but it seeks to “provide a forum for open and informed discussion characterized by civility, tolerance, and compromise.”The Institute seeks to fulfill its mission through the sponsorship of the annual Frank Church Conference, the Frank and Bethine Church Chair of Public Affairs, and the Frank Church Scholarships at Boise State University.

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Remembering Jean Bethine Clark Church


96894_Bethine_Church_Memorial_3-3Jean Bethine Church, widow of the late Idaho Senator Frank Church, died December 21, 2013, at her home in Boise. Bethine, known as the grande dame of the Idaho Democratic Party, was born February 19, 1923, to Chase and Jean Clark, who homesteaded on the Salmon River near Mackay, Idaho. Her father served as Governor of Idaho and later a Federal District Judge. Her family included Barzilla Clark, an uncle and Idaho Governor, and D. Worth Clark, a cousin who served in the U.S. Senate. Continue Reading…