American Democracy Project at RIC

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Political Speechwriters: A Look Behind the Scenes

Monday, Oct. 17th
2-3:30 p.m., Alger Hall 110

The American Democracy Project has the opportunity to bring to Rhode Island College some of the most respected political speechwriters in the nation. In this forum, we will explore the intimate relationship between speechwriter and speaker, and seek to understand how political speeches are constructed and negotiated among a team of writers. These behind-the-scenes strategists influence political dialogue far more than the average citizen realizes, and this event is designed to shed light on the process. We think that this group of speechwriters will have some very interesting stories to tell.

Writers for Howard Dean, Martin O’Malley, and President Obama will be among the compelling panelists:

Parag Mehta, chief of staff to the U.S. Surgeon General and former speechwriter for senate candidate Ron Kirk and presidential candidate Howard Dean.

Sarada Peri, special assistant and senior speechwriter to President Obama.

Steve Rabin, senior advisor for NASA’s Office of Communications, former speechwriter for Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley and former press secretary for Anthony Weiner.

Michael E. Smith, former speechwriter for Rhode Island Office of the Governor and former speechwriter for RIC Office of the President.

The American Democracy Project (ADP) began in 2003 as an initiative of the American Association of State Colleges and Universities (AASCU), in partnership with The New York Times. Its goal is to produce graduates who are committed to being active, involved citizens in their communities. The over 220 participating colleges and universities. RIC is the only college in the state to participate in the ADP and is considered one of the leading programs in the country for political and civic engagement, often used as the model for initiatives by other colleges.

Page last updated: Friday, October 7, 2016