* Purdue University's Krannert School of Management

October 27, 2008

CEO Owens to speak at Purdue as part of corporate ethics series

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - James W. Owens, chairman and CEO of Caterpillar Inc., in Peoria, Ill., will speak at Purdue on Oct. 29 as part of the Series on Corporate Citizenship and Ethics.

The 7 p.m. talk in the Class of 1950 lecture hall is free and open to the public. Owens' talk is presented by the Krannert School of Management and the College of Education's James F. Ackerman Center for Democratic Citizenship and is sponsored by the Purdue Employees Federal Credit Union and Karl and Kathy Krapek.

Owens joined Caterpillar in 1972 as a corporate economist and has held numerous management positions. He was named a group president and member of Caterpillar's executive office in 1995. In December 2003, the Caterpillar board of directors named Owens vice chairman. He was appointed chairman and chief executive officer in February 2004.

He is a director of Alcoa Inc. in Pittsburgh and IBM Corp. in Armonk, N.Y. Owens is a director of the Peterson Institute for International Economics; chairman of the International Trade and Investment Task Force of the Business Roundtable; vice chairman of the Business Council; and a member of the President's Advisory Committee for Trade Policy and Negotiations. He is a director of the Council on Foreign Relations and a member of the Global Advisory Council to the Conference Board in New York.

A native of Elizabeth City, N.C., Owens graduated from North Carolina State University in 1973 with a doctorate in economics.

The Purdue Series on Corporate Citizenship and Ethics began in 2003. Speakers chosen from a variety of disciplines discuss business ethics and the role citizens play in corporate ethics, providing an overview of the impact of corporate ethics on business, the economy and society as a whole.

Two other businessmen are scheduled to speak at Purdue as part of the series in the spring. Jerome Ringo, an environmental advocate and president of the Apollo Alliance, will speak on Jan. 29.

As president of the Apollo Alliance, Ringo represents more than 17 million people across the country and has been endorsed by the AFL-CIO and 22 international labor unions. The alliance is a coalition of labor, environmental, national security, civil rights and business leaders seeking to make America independent from foreign energy in 10 years.

Harvey L. Pitt, former chairman of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, and CEO of Kalorama Partners, LLC, will speak on April 16.

Pitt served as the 26th SEC chairman from 2001-03. During his tenure, Pitt was responsible for overseeing the SEC's response to the market disruptions resulting from the terrorist attacks of 9/11, creating the SEC's "real time enforcement" program and for leading the commission's adoption of dozens of rules in response to the corporate and accounting crises generated by excesses during the 1990s.

Writer: Tanya Brown, (765) 494-2079,

Source: Tim Newton, Krannert School director of external relations and communications, (765) 496-7271,

Purdue News Service: (765) 494-2096;

Note to Journalists: Journalists wishing to attend any of the Series on Corporate Citizenship and Ethics events should contact Tanya Brown, Purdue News Service, (765) 494-2079, or e-mail

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