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Mccain Institute’s Sedona Forum to take place virtually from April 28 to April 30

Forum Includes Discussions With Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki and others

WASHINGTON (April 23, 2021)—For the first time, the Sedona Forum – the McCain Institute’s annual gathering to discuss the world’s most pressing issues with top experts, policymakers, humanitarians, and corporate industry leaders – will be open to the public. This year’s conference, the 2021 Sedona Forum: Defending Democracy, will occur virtually from Wednesday, April 28 through Friday, April 30.

As the McCain Institute’s signature event, the Sedona Forum provides a unique platform for the United States and world leaders to have informal, face-to-face discussions, focusing on actionable solutions to our most urgent challenges, with the ultimate goal of bringing about positive change in national and international affairs.

“After having to, unfortunately, cancel last year’s Sedona Forum, I couldn’t be more excited to welcome an unbelievable roster of speakers to the first-ever virtual Sedona Forum,” said McCain Institute Board of Trustees Chair Cindy McCain. “While I’ll miss hosting everyone in beautiful Sedona, I’m positive that the conversation will be as constructive and relevant as ever.”

“In a time of global uncertainty, and the world’s most vulnerable people losing freedom and economic security, the Sedona Forum provides a vital venue for discussing the way forward on these issues that reflects the shared values and ideals of America and its allies,” said McCain Institute Executive Chairman Josette Sheeran. “I can’t think of a better way to honor Senator McCain’s career and legacy than by gathering leaders from across the political spectrum to find common ground on our biggest challenges.”

The 2021 Sedona Forum will feature topical and constructive conversations around the most critical issues of our time. Leading public figures from the world of business such as co-founder of Schmidt Futures and former CEO of Google Eric Schmidt and current CEO of YouTube Susan Wojcicki, public servants like Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, global humanitarians such as Ben Affleck, Chef José Andrés and Angelina Jolie, and military leaders like Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Mark Milley will discuss issues related to the rise of China, modern cyberwarfare, the Russia challenge, disinformation and the erosion of democracy, combatting human trafficking and much more.

“As a longtime colleague and friend of Senator John McCain, I saw firsthand how much his love for democracy and service to the United States of America impacted his work and his life,” said Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY). “I was glad to address the Sedona Forum and help continue John’s legacy of promoting freedom, democracy, and American leadership around the world.”

“Senator McCain’s profound patriotism, commitment to public service and great respect for American democracy are principles that our nation is missing every day,” said House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA). “As House Speaker and as a friend of the late Senator McCain, it is my honor and privilege to join Cindy McCain for an important discussion on leadership and how we can all carry on his mission to defend democracy and freedom here at home and around the world.”


“The McCain Institute at Arizona State University’s Sedona Forum continues to be the standard bearer for convening the top subject experts and facilitating an open-exchange of ideas,” said ASU President Dr. Michael M. Crow. “It starts with bringing together a diverse group of leaders to addresss innovative solutions for improving lives around the world.“

Registration for the 2021 Sedona Forum is now open. A complete Sedona Forum agenda, speaker list and more information can be found on

About The Sedona Forum:
The Sedona Forum is the McCain Institute’s annual, high-level gathering of national and international leaders held each spring in the red rock country of Sedona, Arizona. The Sedona Forum convenes thought leaders, decision-makers, activists and diverse experts to discuss approaches and solutions to real-world problems.

Past speakers have included Vice President Joe Biden; former Prime Minister Tony Blair; Director of National Intelligence James Clapper; Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton; Director of National Intelligence Daniel Coats; CBS News Correspondent John Dickerson; Actor and Thorn Co-Founder Ashton Kutcher; Secretary of Defense James Mattis; National Security Advisor Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster; CIA Director Mike Pompeo; CEOs from GE, Chevron, Walmart-USA, Fedex, Freeport McMoRan and Hewlett Packard; and presidents, prime ministers, foreign ministers, experts and civil society leaders from around the world.

About the McCain Institute for International Leadership at Arizona State University
Inspired by the character-driven leadership of Sen. John S. McCain and his family’s legacy of public service, the McCain Institute implements programs and initiatives to make a difference in people’s lives across a range of critical areas: leadership development, human rights, rule of law, national security, preventing targeted violence and combating human trafficking.

About Arizona State University
Arizona State University has developed a new model for the American research university, creating an institution that is committed to access, excellence and impact. ASU measures itself by those it includes, not by those it excludes. As the prototype for a New American University, ASU pursues research that contributes to the public good, and ASU assumes major responsibility for the economic, social and cultural vitality of the communities that surround it.

McCain Institute Press Office
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