February-March 2017

Renowned Journalist, Pulitzer Prize-winning Historian Round Up Speakers Series

The New Jersey Speakers Series ends its 2016–2017 season with presentations by Ted Koppel, broadcast journalist and former anchor of “Nightline,” on March 23, and Jon Meacham, award-winning presidential historian, on April 20, at the New Jersey Performing Arts Center (NJPAC), in Newark, N.J.

Ted Koppel and Jon Meacham
Ted Koppel, left, and Jon Meacham

Koppel is best known as the first anchor of ABC’s Nightline,” serving in that role from the program’s inception in 1980 until his retirement in 2005. After leaving Nightline,” he was managing editor for the Discovery Channel. He is currently a senior news analyst for NPR and a contributing analyst on BBC World News America and for NBC News.

Meacham has written biographies of Andrew Jackson, Thomas Jefferson and, most recently, George H.W. Bush. A former editor-in-chief of Newsweek and a contributing editor to Time magazine, he now serves as the executive editor at Random House.

On February 23, Gen. Martin Dempsey, former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, opened his speech with a salute to his New Jersey roots — “Exit 14A, if anyone’s interested” — the Bayonne, N.J., native said. He talked about military strategy, current events and leadership lessons learned in his decades of service.

“There are two principles all leaders must cultivate: belonging and inclusion. It was my responsibility as a leader to make the soldiers under my command feel like they belonged. The more we do this — in all walks of life — the better citizens people are,” he said. “Inclusion is about giving up control to retain power. It sounds counterintuitive, but it works. With Britain, we developed a way to be inclusive with someone who shared our values,” he said, citing the interdependent relationship between the U.S. and the U.K. To read more go to http://view2.fdu.edu/fdu-whats-new/feature-stories/2016-2017/02/nj-speakers-series-presents-general-martin-dempsey/.

Dempsey Group Photo
Left photo: From left are Timur Pakay, executive director, Rothman Institute of Innovation and Entrepreneurship (Flor), and Gen. Martin Dempsey.
Right photo: From left are John Myles, president, FDU Student Veterans Association; Martha Garcia, director of veterans service for outreach (Metro); Jeffrey Dunn, director of veterans services for operations (Metro); Dempsey; veteran Mariano Cappelan, MBA student and alumnus, BA’16 (Metro); and veteran Thomas Wicklow, BA’14 (Flor).

On January 26, John Cleese, actor, comedian and co-founder of Monty Python, graced the NJPAC stage. In a discussion moderated by Steve Scott, news anchor for WCBS Newsradio 880 AM, Cleese revealed that he was not much of a class clown. He also spoke about his mother, “who wrote her worries down so she would never forget them” and from whom he inherited “a wonderful black sense of humor.” Adding that humor brought them moments of togetherness, Cleese said, “A laugh is the shortest distance between two people.” To read more go to http://www.myfdu.net/cleese.

Speaker Series Group
John Cleese with FDU administrators and faculty members, from left, President Christopher Capuano; Gillian Small, University provost and senior vice president for academic affairs (Metro/Flor); Daniel Cassino, political science and director of experimental research, PublicMind™ (Flor); and Gwen Jones, management and chair, management (Flor).

Each season, the New Jersey Speakers series brings world leaders, acclaimed authors and other fascinating personalities to NJPAC for seven Thursday evening presentations, each of which is followed by an audience Q&A with the featured speakers. Presented by FDU, the New Jersey Speakers Series is sponsored by the New Jersey Performing Arts Center (NJPAC), WCBS Newsradio, nj.com affiliated with Star-Ledger, Wells Fargo, Delta Dental of New Jersey, PNC Bank, TD Bank and Hollister Construction Services;

Tickets are sold by subscription (based on availability, subscriptions will continue to be sold on prorated basis throughout remainder of season), open seating (available on first-come, first-served basis). For prorated pricing/to order tickets call 1-888-696-5722 or 1-888-696-5722 or go to http://njspeakersseries.org. For information, visit http://njspeakersseries.org or call 1-888-MY-NJPAC.

The list of featured presenters in the upcoming season of the New Jersey Speaker Series will be published in the April–May 2017 issue of Inside FDU.