Former President Bill Clinton to participate in 2017-2018 series

Mark Tsyrouk

Staff Writer


On March 23, audience members cheered in the theater at the New Jersey Performing Arts Center in reaction to the upcoming presentations within the 2017- 2018 New Jersey Speakers Series, including former U.S. President Bill Clinton.

The announcement, which took place in Newark, came right be- fore a lecture from Ted Koppel, a journalist and anchor for “Night- line” from 1980 until his retirement in 2005.

The list was read by WCBS News Radio anchor Steve Scott, who also regularly hosts the Speakers Series events.

The new series is expected to start on Oct. 12 with Cameron, who served as prime minister of the United Kingdom from 2010 to 2016.

Preceded by Gordon Brown, Cameron’s policies tackled issues from the 2008 global financial crisis, including military defense cuts and spending increases within food banks and welfare pro- grams.

Cameron resigned in 2016 fol- lowing a UK national vote to leave the European Union. He is still a member of the British Conserva- tive Party.

On Nov. 2, the series will host legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin, best known for his television appearances on CNN and staff writing at The New Yorker.

Toobin has written several books on the Supreme Court, including his New York Times bestseller, “The Nine,” which won several academic awards in journalism after its publication in 2007.

Next up, on Nov. 30, is journalist and author Cokie Roberts, who is a senior news analyst for NPR and commentator for ABC News. According to her biography on, Roberts has won three Emmys and is a member of the Broadcasting and Cable Hall of Fame.

The speaker following the winter break transitioning into 2018 will be journalist and author Robin Wright, who currently contributes to The New Yorker. Wright is a joint fellow at the U.S. Institute of Peace and the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, a “non-partisan” policy forum ac- tively involved in congressional legislation, according to

With a specialty in Middle Eastern studies and foreign affairs, Wright has written several publications about Islam and Iran.

The series will then switch away from political topics toward entertainment, with speakers including television host Rick Steves and Paul Nicklen, a photographer for National Geographic.

Steves hosts a travel guide show,

“Rick Steves’ Europe,” and has promoted independent travel for American audiences since 1991. He will speak on Feb. 22.

A month later, the series will welcome Nicklen, a marine biol- ogist and environmental activist who has won over 30 international awards in photography and conservation efforts, according to his personal website.

The series will end on April 12 with a visit from Clinton, who served as the 42nd president of the United States from 1993 to 2001.

Having held records for having the longest period of economic peacetime in American history and having the highest end-of-office approval rating since World War II, Clinton now travels the world for humanitarian efforts under the Clinton Foundation.

April Patrick, director of FDU’s honors program, said tickets to the Clinton event will be hard to hold onto. “We’re only giving out nine tickets for every speaker,” she said, adding that students are already very excited about the for- mer president’s visit.

The New Jersey Speakers Series is presented by Fairleigh Dick- inson University and is open to a limited number of honors students.

Tickets are available to the public at All events take place on Thursdays at 8 p.m.

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