Journalist Tom Brokaw to deliver Eugene J. McCarthy Lecture

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August 13, 2012

Tom Brokaw
Tom Brokaw

Video archive of McCarthy Lecture

Tom Brokaw, NBC News television journalist and author, will deliver the sixth annual Eugene J. McCarthy Lecture titled "Conscience and Courage in Public Life" at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 11, in the Saint John's Abbey and University Church.

The lecture is free and open to the public, but tickets are required to attend. Tickets are available at the Benedicta Arts Center Box Office on the College of Saint Benedict campus or by calling 320-363-5777. Box Office academic hours are 10 a.m.-6 p.m., Monday through Saturday.

The lecture is co-sponsored by The Eugene J. McCarthy Center for Public Policy and Civic Engagement at Saint John's University, the University Chair in Critical Thinking at Saint John's University and the Diamond Certificate in Civic Leadership through the Inspiring Leaders Certificate Program at CSB and SJU.

Brokaw has spent his entire distinguished journalism career with NBC News beginning in 1966 in the Los Angeles bureau, where he covered Ronald Reagan's first run for public office as California governor, and McCarthy's 1968 presidential campaign.

From Los Angeles, Brokaw went to Washington, D.C., in 1973 as the White House correspondent during Watergate and as the principal backup for John Chancellor as anchor of NBC Nightly News. His next stops were in New York on Today from 1976-82 and then as anchor of NBC Nightly News from 1982-2004.

He has an impressive list of firsts, including the first interview with Mikhail Gorbachev, the first network report on human rights abuses in Tibet accompanied by an exclusive interview with the Dali Lama, and the only American network anchor to report from Berlin the night the Berlin Wall came down in November 1989.

In 1998, Brokaw published his first book, The Greatest Generation. He followed that with five other books, including Boom! Voices of the Sixties and, most recently, The Time of our Lives.

Brokaw has won every major award in his profession, including Peabody, Duponts, Emmys and lifetime achievement recognition. A native of Webster, S.D., Brokaw graduated with a bachelor's degree in political science from the University of South Dakota.   

The Eugene J. McCarthy Lecture was established in January 2006. McCarthy spent seven years as a student at Saint John's Preparatory School and University, and nearly one year as a member of the Benedictine community of Saint John's Abbey.

The lecture series carries on McCarthy's deep commitment to the ideals and principles of democratic self-government. It seeks to inspire a new generation of young people to pursue fresh ideas, to challenge the status quo, to effect positive change in their communities and, like McCarthy himself, to lead with honesty, integrity and courage.

Past lecturers in the series have included newspaper columnist, author and commentator E.J. Dionne (2007); civil rights leader Julian Bond (2008); former Nebraska Sen. Chuck Hagel (2009); Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar (2010); and columnist and political analyst Mark Shields (2011).