Doris Kearns Goodwin, the Pulitzer Prize-winning author who has been called "America’s historian in chief," will deliver Longwood University’s commencement address and receive an honorary degree on May 9.
Through her best-selling books about Abraham Lincoln, John F. Kennedy, Lyndon Johnson, Franklin Delano Roosevelt and Theodore Roosevelt, along with notable television and documentary appearances, Goodwin has played an extraordinary role in shaping public understanding of—and enthusiasm for—American history.
"It will be a tremendous honor to welcome Doris Kearns Goodwin to Longwood," said President W. Taylor Reveley IV. "Longwood sits at a true crossroads of history—the place where the Civil War came to a close exactly 150 years ago, and which played such a key role in the civil rights movement a century later.
"As someone who both cares deeply about the importance of historical understanding in citizenship, and who has shown such deep support for those who teach history, she is the perfect person to send off our new graduates," Reveley said.
Goodwin’s most recent critically acclaimed book is The Bully Pulpit: Theodore Roosevelt, William Howard Taft, and the Golden Age of Journalism. She won the Pulitzer Prize in history for No Ordinary Time: Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt: The Home Front in World War II. Her award-winning Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln became a basis for the 2012 Steven Spielberg film which earned 12 Academy Award nominations. Spielberg’s DreamWorks Studios acquired the film rights to The Bully Pulpit.
She is also the author of the best sellers Wait Till Next Year, Lyndon Johnson and the American Dream and The Fitzgeralds and the Kennedys, which was adapted into an award-winning five-part TV miniseries.
Goodwin is well known for her appearances and commentary on television, where she is seen frequently on NBC,MSNBC, CBS, ABC, FOX, CNN, The Charlie Rose Show and Meet the Press. Other appearances include The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, The Colbert Report, The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson, and many more.
Goodwin has served as a consultant and has been interviewed extensively for PBS and the History Channel's documentaries on LBJ, the Kennedy family, Franklin Roosevelt, Abraham and Mary Lincoln and Ken Burns' The History of Baseball and The Roosevelts: An Intimate History.
Goodwin earned a Ph.D. in Government from Harvard University, where she taught government, including a course on the American presidency. She served as an assistant to President Lyndon Johnson in his last year in the White House, and later assisted President Johnson in the preparation of his memoirs.
Goodwin is the winner of the Charles Frankel Prize, given by the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Sarah Josepha Hale medal and the Lincoln Prize. She resides in Concord, Massachusetts, with her husband, the writer, presidential advisor, speechwriter and playwright Richard N. Goodwin. She was the first woman to enter the Boston Red Sox locker room, and remains a devoted supporter of the team.
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