Christiane Amanpour, CNN’s chief international correspondent, and James Rubin, broadcaster, professor, commentator and communications consultant, will serve as our 2007-2008 Park Distinguished Visitors. Christiane Amanpour and James Rubin
Lecture Title: "America and the World"
Wednesday, April 9
Ben Light Gymnasium, Hill Center
Christiane Amanpour is CNN’s chief international correspondent based in London. Amanpour has reported on most crises from the world’s many hotspots including Iraq, Afghanistan, Iran, Israel, Pakistan, Somalia, Rwanda and the Balkans.
Her assignments range from exclusive interviews with numerous world leaders to reporting from the heart of war zones for which she has received wide acclaim.
In 2005 Amanpour traveled the world following the major stories that developed. From Tsunami-hit Sri Lanka to the hurricane devastation in Louisiana, Amanpour reported on the many natural disasters that hit the planet in a dramatic news year. Among the many other stories that she covered were the London terrorist attacks, the riots in France, the first democratic elections in Iraq and the death and funeral of Pope John Paul II and the election of Pope Benedict XVI. In 2004 high profile stories covered by Amanpour included the Darfur conflict in Sudan; she traveled to the region twice and coverage included an exclusive interview with Sudanese President al-Bashir.
Throughout her career Amanpour has succeeded in securing a number of high profile and exclusive interviews with world leaders. Just as Iran’s nuclear crisis was developing, Amanpour secured the first and only interview with Iran’s new president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Major interviews in 2005 included a world exclusive with Syrian President Bashar el Assad on the UN investigation into Syria’s involvement in the assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafiq Hariri and French Prime Minister Domenique de Villepin in the aftermath of the riots in France. Other noteworthy interviews conducted by Amanpour have included French President Jacques Chirac prior to the 2003 conflict in Iraq and British Prime Minister Tony Blair, with whom she also secured the first interview after September 11, 2001. Amanpour interviewed Mahmoud Abbas, the first Palestinian Prime Minister, during a state visit to Washington in 2003, secured the first ever interview with Jordan’s new monarch, King Abdullah, in May 1999 and was the last journalist to interview the King’s father, the long-reigning King Hussein, days before his death. Other interviews include President Musharraf during the war against Afghanistan in 2001, Chairman Arafat and ex-Prime Minister Barak during the heightened Middle East peace negotiations in 2000 and Mikhail Gorbachev in November 1999 for the 10th anniversary of the fall of communism, as well as an exclusive with Hillary Rodham Clinton in May 1999 and with President Khatami in December 1997.
Amanpour is widely acclaimed for her coverage of the war in the Balkans where she spent years on this dangerous assignment, bringing the Bosnian tragedy into context and to the world’s attention. No international network correspondent has reported as continuously from this ethnically torn region. Amanpour subsequently covered the Milosevic war crime trials in The Hague in 2001 and 2002 and returned to the region in 2005 to mark the 10th anniversary of the Srebrenica massacre.
Her reputation as a world-class correspondent began with her reporting on the dramatic changes occurring in central Europe during 1989 and 1990. During her assignment in the Persian Gulf she covered the Gulf War, from Iraq's invasion of Kuwait in 1990 to the U.S. bombing of Baghdad and the Kurdish refugee crisis on the Iran/Iraq border that persisted after the cease-fire. She also covered the break-up of the Soviet Union in 1991 and subsequent war in Tbilisi. In December 1992, Amanpour briefly left the former Yugoslavia to report live from the shores of Mogadishu, Somalia, as U.S. troops launched Operation: Restore Hope.
Amanpour has received many prestigious awards in recognition of for her reporting on major world stories. For her reporting from the Balkans, Amanpour received a News and Documentary Emmy, two George Foster Peabody Awards, two George Polk Awards, a Courage in Journalism Award, a Worldfest-Houston International Film Festival Gold Award and the Livingston Award for Young Journalists. She was also named 1994 Woman of the Year by the New York Chapter of Women in Cable and Telecommunications, and she helped the CNN news network win a duPont Award for its coverage of Bosnia and a Golden CableACE for its Gulf War coverage.
Amanpour’s 1991 Gulf War reporting also received the Breakthrough Award from Women, Men and Media. Her contribution to the 1985 four-week series, ‘Iran: In the Name of God’, helped CNN earn its first duPont award.
In total Amanpour has won nine Emmy awards, including one for her documentary “Struggle for Islam”; the 2002 Edward R Murrow Award for Distinguished Achievement in Broadcast Journalism; the Sigma Chi Award (SDX) for her reports from Goma, Zaire; a George Polk Award for her work on the CNN International special “Battle for Afghanistan” in 1997; and the Nymphe d’Honneur at the Monte Carlo Television Festival in 1997, to name but a few.
Recently, Amanpour was named a Fellow of the Society of Professional Journalists. This honor recognizes significant contributions to journalism. She has also been bestowed with a number of honorary degrees from America’s prestigious universities.
Amanpour began her CNN career in 1983 as an assistant on the network’s international assignment desk in Atlanta. She has since worked in CNN’s New York and Frankfurt bureaus.
Before joining CNN, Amanpour worked at WJAR-TV, Providence, R.I., as an electronic graphics designer. From 1981 to 1982, she worked as a reporter, anchor and producer for WBRU-Radio, also in Providence.
Amanpour graduated summa cum laude from the University of Rhode Island with a bachelor of arts in journalism.
James P. Rubin:
James P. Rubin is currently an Adjunct Professor at Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs.
From May 2000 to December 2007, Mr. Rubin lived in London, working as a broadcaster, professor, commentator and communications consultant. Most recently, from October 2005 to October 2007, he was international news anchor and world affairs commentator for SKY news.
Rubin served under President Clinton as Assistant Secretary of State for Public Affairs and Chief Spokesman for the State Department from 1997 to May 2000. He was also a top policy adviser to Secretary of State Madeleine K. Albright. He conducted daily on-camera briefings for the State Department press corps and represented the administration in print, radio, and television interviews regarding U.S. diplomatic, foreign economic and national security policies. During the 2004 Presidential general election, Mr. Rubin served as Senior Adviser for National Security for John Kerry.
Mr. Rubin was Visiting Professor of International Relations at the London School of Economics from 2001-2004, and in 2002 and 2003 the host of the PBS series Wide Angle, a primetime, weekly international affairs program.
Rubin was Director of Foreign Policy for the Clinton/Gore '96 Campaign. From 1993 until 1996, he was Senior Adviser and Spokesman for the U.S. Representative to the United Nations.
From 1989-1993, he was a Professional Staff Member on the U.S. Senate Committee on Foreign Relations and Senior Foreign Policy Adviser to Senator Joseph R. Biden, Jr. (D-DE).
Rubin received a Bachelor of Arts degree in political science and a Masters in international affairs from Columbia University.
In 1998, he was the recipient of Columbia University's John Jay Award for Distinguished Professional Achievement. In 2000, he received the State Department’s highest honor, the Distinguished Service Award.
Rubin is Vice Chairman of the Atlantic Partnership, serves on the board of Columbia University’s School of International Affairs and the International Rescue Committee UK, and is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.