Sep 23, 2008    #091
Contact: Laura Pate Byerley

Harry S. Truman Impersonator Speaks at UMKC University recognizes former U.S. president and alumnus

As part of the University of Missouri-Kansas City’s 75th anniversary weekend, a Harry S. Truman impersonator will recreate the day when the former U.S. president received his honorary degree from the Kansas City School of Law (now the UMKC School of Law) in 1945. The UMKC-based Harry S. Truman Center for Governmental Affairs is sponsoring the event, which will take place at 1 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 4 in the second-floor conference facility of the Administrative Center, 5115 Oak Street. An RSVP form is located at

William Worley, an adjunct instructor of history and liberal arts and sciences at UMKC, will impersonate Truman and answer questions. Since 1993, Worley has portrayed historic characters, such as Tom Pendergast, James Naismith and Walt Disney.

“My hope is that people will gain a greater sense of the University of Kansas City as a place of historical importance,” Worley said. “Also, I hope they will better understand how President Truman’s work experience in Kansas City shaped his capability in office.”

After becoming a Jackson County judge, Truman attended the Kansas City School of Law in 1923. Because of work and family obligations, Truman dropped out of law school in 1925. When he returned to speak at the University’s 50th anniversary celebration in 1945, he received an honorary law degree.

The Harry S. Truman Center for Governmental Affairs also honors the Truman legacy with a Truman Bootstrap Scholarship Program, which allows summer interns to work in Congress. Preference goes to students who could not otherwise afford the time or money required to intern in Congress.

The University of Missouri-Kansas City (UMKC), one of four University of Missouri campuses, is a public university serving more than 14,000 undergraduate, graduate and professional students. Celebrating 75 years, UMKC engages with the community and economy based on a four-part mission: life and health sciences; visual and performing arts; urban issues and education; and a vibrant learning and campus life experience.

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This information is available to people with speech or hearing impairments by calling Relay Missouri at (800) 735-2966 (TT) or (800) 735-2466 (voice).


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