The Leadership Institute which I am privileged to head is an investment by Queen's University in the future of Northern Ireland and our place in the wider world.
Now – with the William J Clinton name – our work has been endorsed by one of the most inspirational leaders of our time and it is an honour that he is with us today.
Both during and after his presidency, Bill Clinton has been passionate about Ireland, north and south, and about doing whatever he can to promote our economic and social wellbeing. That is the role of our institute, too.
We're the focal point for leadership development and executive education for senior managers in Northern Ireland, but we also encourage their development as individuals with the will and the capacity to make a difference to the world around them.
We're working with more than 200 clients, many of them organisations and institutions which are driving Northern Ireland's growth, such as the Assembly, local government, InvestNI, the Northern Ireland Chamber of Commerce and, of course, InterTrade Ireland. There are also key businesses like Dow, Allstate, Allianz, MJM and Andor Technology, to name just a few.
We're not dealing with novices who are just learning about leadership. These are people who are at the top of their professions.
We see ourselves as facilitators who recognise that the answers lie within the individuals themselves. Our job is help them surface that creativity and deploy effectively back in the workplace.
There is no shortage of drive and ambition in Northern Ireland. My colleagues and I are constantly exhilarated by it.
I'm impressed by the people I meet – their leadership ability and huge potential they have to develop further. There's so much more they want to achieve and their growth is vital for our future. It is our privilege to play a role in making that happen.
The visit of William Jefferson Clinton today to the Leadership Institute that bears his name is the inspiration for them and for Queen's to go further.