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Society & Culture

Tom Brokaw Looks at 50 Years in News in Latest Installment of Rudman Institute's Conversation Series

March 28, 2017

Tom Brokaw

Venerable broadcast journalist Tom Brokaw, longtime anchor of NBC Nightly News, will visit Drexel as part of the Rudman Institute's conversation series.

Legendary television journalist Tom Brokaw will join former NBC News producer and colleague, Karen Curry, for a discussion about his career in journalism, including 22 years behind the anchor desk at NBC’s “Nightly News.” The event is the latest installment in a series presented by the Kal and Lucille Rudman Institute for Entertainment Industry Studies.

The event reunites Brokaw with his longtime colleague Curry, who is executive director of the Rudman Institute and a faculty member at Drexel University’s Westphal College of Media Arts & Design, for a discussion about the changing state of the news business over the last 50 years, that will be held on Saturday, April 8 at 2 p.m. in the Stein Auditorium of Nesbitt Hall at 33rd and Market Streets.

Brokaw’s career spans six decades of reporting, from Sioux City, Iowa to Los Angeles and the White House to New York while becoming one of the most trusted television journalists of our time. He established himself as a hard-nosed political reporter while covering the Watergate Scandal as NBC News White House correspondent in the early 1970s. Brokaw hosted the “Today Show” for five years before taking the helm of NBC’s flagship “Nightly News” broadcast in 1982.

From the anchor chair and on the ground, Brokaw informed Americans about major events from the Challenger explosion to the fall of the Berlin Wall, the rise of democracy in Russia and the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. By 1996 Brokaw had led NBC’s broadcast to the top Nielsen rating in its time slot, an honor it maintained until his retirement in 2004.

Curry and Brokaw worked together at the “Today Show” where they covered major domestic stories as well as the assassination of Egyptian President Anwar Sadat, the attempt on the life of Pope John Paul II, the Royal Wedding of Prince Charles and Lady Diana Spencer among other stories. Curry will lead the wide-ranging conversation on April 8, that will touch on everything from Brokaw’s experiences in the newsroom to the challenges facing reporters in today’s age of instant news and social media.

Since stepping down as anchor, Brokaw has remained at NBC News as a special correspondent, an analyst and a documentary producer. He moderated the second presidential debate between Barak Obama and John McCain in 2008 and was interim host of “Meet the Press” following Tim Russert’s death.

In addition to his broadcast reporting, Brokaw is also author of “The Greatest Generation,” his renowned perspective piece on the people who grew up in American between the Great Depression and World War II, which was published to much acclaim in 1998.

“Tom is a quintessential newsman for whom the story is always the most important goal,” Curry said. “He rolls up his sleeves, picks up the phone and even when in the anchor chair, is always a reporter first.  Arguably the most respected anchor of his generation, he is a man well-suited to provide an important perspective on today’s news environment.”

The conversation is free and open to the public with a reception to follow. For more information and to RSVP, visit: https://drexel.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_d10TLOLGvvlnDLf

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