Florida Southern College will host a presentation by retired FBI agent Gary Noesner on “Calm, Creative Communications in Crisis: My Life as an FBI Hostage Negotiator” at 7 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 13 in the William M. Hollis Seminar Room of the Thad Buckner Building at FSC. The event, part of the annual Florida Lecture Series presented by the Lawton M. Chiles, Jr. Center for Florida History, is free and open to the public.
Noesner, who graduated from Florida Southern in 1972, was an FBI agent for 30 years, spending the last 10 as chief of its Crisis Negotiation Unit, Critical Incident Response Group. As chief, he led law enforcement’s response to prison riots, right-wing militia standoffs, religious zealot sieges, terrorist embassy takeovers, airplane hijackings, and overseas kidnappings involving American citizens. He was involved in some of the nation’s most high-profile FBI cases of that period, including the hijacking of the Achille Lauro cruise ship; the Branch Davidian siege in Waco, Texas; and the Washington, D.C., sniper case. His first book, Stalling for Time, is a memoir about his career as an FBI hostage negotiator and was published in September 2010.
Since retiring in 2003, Noesner has served as a senior vice president with Control Risks, an international risk consultancy, and he works part-time in kidnap management consulting. He has appeared on television documentaries produced by A&E, the History Channel, Discovery, TLC, and National Geographic. Noesner is the founder of the National Council of Negotiation Associations, which represents negotiation organizations and law-enforcement negotiators nationwide.
Noesner said his lecture will focus on lessons learned from negotiation and handling crises that have day-to-day applications. “The same tenets of effective crisis management apply to effective negotiation in business and personal life situations,” he said.
“We are delighted to host Gary Noesner as this year’s Stahl lecturer,” noted James M. Denham, director of the Lawton M. Chiles Jr. Center for Florida History. “Stalling for Time is a great read and has gotten many accolades over the last several months.”