New Canaan native Anthony Lake, the executive director of the United Nations Children's Fund, will deliver the seventh annual Anita Houston Lecture at 2 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 24, at the New Canaan Library.

Lake will speak on "The United Nations and Children: Investing in the Next Generation."

The lecture is co-sponsored by the library and the UN Committee of New Canaan.

Lake, who grew up in New Canaan, has served as the sixth executive director of the United Nations Children's Fund since May 2010. He brings to the position more than 45 years of public service. He began his career in the U.S. State Department as a foreign service officer in 1962, going on to work with global leaders and policy makers throughout his extensive career.

He has been a foreign policy adviser to many Democratic U.S. presidents and presidential candidates, including President Barack Obama, and he served as national security adviser under President Bill Clinton from 1993 to 1997.

He has managed a full range of foreign policy, national security, humanitarian and development issues at the most senior levels.

Upon leaving the government, he served as the United States President's Special Envoy, first in Ethiopia and Eritrea, and later in Haiti. His efforts, for which he received the 2000 Samuel Nelson Drew Award, contributed to the achievement of the Algiers Agreement that ended the war between Ethiopia and Eritrea. He also played a leading role in shaping policies that led to peace in Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Northern Ireland.

More Information

Fact box

His experience in international development began in the 1970s as director of International Voluntary Services, and in the same decade served on the boards of Save the Children (1975 to 1977) and the Overseas Development Council. From 1998 to 2007, he served on the board of the U.S. Fund for UNICEF, with a term as chairman from 2004 to 2007, after which he was appointed a permanent honorary member.

Immediately prior to his appointment with UNICEF, Lake served as distinguished professor in the practice of diplomacy at the Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University, and has served as a member of the advisory council of the Princeton Institute for International and Regional Studies, among other university boards and councils.

He obtained a Bachelor of Arts from Harvard in 1961, read international economics at Trinity College, Cambridge, and went on to receive his doctorate from the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University in 1974.

Houston worked on behalf of the United Nations over a 50-year period as New Canaan's "ambassador to the world," providing hospitality for hundreds of UN delegates. Houston was honorary chairman and member of the local UN Committee, as well as head of the UN Study Group of New Canaan.

A $10 donation is suggested. To register, visit or call 203-594-5040.