'PBS NewsHour' Anchor Judy Woodruff to Speak at Lehigh

Woodruff will deliver the 2019 Kenner Lecture on Cultural Understanding on Tuesday, March 19.

Story by

Kelly Hochbein

Judy Woodruff

Broadcast journalist Judy Woodruff, the anchor and managing editor of the “PBS NewsHour,” will present “Speaking Across Political Differences Today in America,” the 2019 Kenner Lecture on Cultural Understanding, on Tuesday, March 19, at 8 p.m. in Baker Hall.

Woodruff has been the anchor of the “PBS NewsHour” since 2013, a role she shared with her co-anchor, the late Gwen Ifill, until Ifill’s passing in November 2016. When the two were named co-anchors, the “PBS NewsHour” became the first American network broadcast to be anchored by two women. Woodruff and Ifill were also the first team of women to moderate a Democratic presidential debate: the February 2016 debate between Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders.

After graduating from Duke University with a degree in political science, Woodruff began a decades-long career covering politics and other news. She was the "NBC News" White House correspondent from 1977-1982, followed by a year as NBC's "Today" show chief Washington correspondent. Woodruff then joined PBS and was the chief Washington correspondent for the “MacNeil/Lehrer NewsHour” from 1983 to 1993. She then anchored PBS' award-winning weekly documentary series, “Frontline with Judy Woodruff,” from 1984-1990. In 1993 she moved to CNN, where for 12 years she served as anchor and senior correspondent, and her responsibilities included anchoring the weekly program, “Inside Politics.” From 2006-2013, Woodruff anchored “Conversations with Judy Woodruff,” a monthly program for Bloomberg Television.

Woodruff in 2007 completed a project called “Generation Next: Speak Up. Be Heard.,” which highlighted the views of young Americans through two hour-long documentaries aired on PBS, as well as a series of reports on the “NewsHour with Jim Lehrer,” NPR and in USA Today. In 2011, she was the principal reporter for the PBS documentary, “Nancy Reagan: The Role of a Lifetime.”

Woodruff has received wide recognition and many accolades for her work as a journalist. Arizona State University's Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication awarded Woodruff and the late Ifill the 2017 Walter Cronkite Award for Excellence in Journalism. Woodruff has also received the Cine Lifetime Achievement Award, a Duke University Distinguished Alumni Award, the Edward R. Murrow Lifetime Achievement Award in Broadcast Journalism/Television, the University of Southern California Walter Cronkite Award for Excellence in Journalism, the Al Neuharth/University of South Dakota Award for Excellence in Journalism and the Gaylord Prize for Excellence in Journalism and Mass Communications from the University of Oklahoma. She is the founding co-chair of the International Women’s Media Foundation and serves on several boards.

The Kenner Lecture Series in the College of Arts and Sciences was endowed by Jeffrey L. Kenner ’65. Kenner, who studied industrial engineering and business administration at Lehigh, established the lecture series in 1997. After a career as a management consultant with PricewaterhouseCoopers (then Price Waterhouse & Co.), he became involved in leveraged buyouts and venture capital. In 1986, Kenner formed his own firm, Kenner & Co. Inc. He served as a university trustee from 1995-2002, has long been a member of the university's Asa Packer and Tower Societies, and is a member of Leadership Plaza.

This free and non-ticketed event is open to the public. Doors open at 7:30 p.m. For more information or to reserve seating for groups of 10 or more, contact the Office of Interdisciplinary Programs at 610-758-3996 or incasip@lehigh.edu. If you are not local or are unable to attend, this event will be live-broadcast in the Lehigh Valley on WLVR, 91.3FM and also available via live stream at www.wlvr.org.

Story by

Kelly Hochbein

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