Nancy Hanks Lecture on Arts and Public Policy Transcrip: Robert MacNeil (2007)
About Robert MacNeil
Robert MacNeil is Chairman of the Board of The MacDowell Colony, the nation’s first artist residency program, which is celebrating its cen-tennial in 2007. The MacDowell Colony awards fellowships to artists of exceptional talent, pro-viding time, space, and an inspiring environ-ment in which to do creative work. Born and educated in Canada, Robert MacNeil was a journalist for 40 years with the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, Reuters News Agency, NBC News, and the BBC, culminating in 20 years as Executive Editor of the MacNeil-Lehrer NewsHour on PBS. He is the author of three novels and three memoirs, The Right Place at the Right Time, Wordstruck, and Looking for My Country. He is co-author of The Story of English and hosted the award-winning BBC-PBS docu-mentary series of the same name. The sequel, Do You Speak American?, was broadcast in 2005 when the companion book was published. Mr. MacNeil is a trustee of the Freedom Forum Newseum, the world’s first museum of journal-ism, now under construction in Washington, DC, and co-chairman of the Council of Conservators of the New York Public Library. He and his wife, Donna, live in New York and Nova Scotia.
About the lecture:
Nancy Hank served as president of Americans for the Arts (formerly the American Council for the Arts) from 1968 to 1969, when she was appointed chair of the National Endowment for the Arts, a position she served through 1977. During her eight-year tenure at the National Endowment for the Arts, the agency's budget grew 1,400 percent. Until her death 1983, Nancy Hanks worked hard to bring national prominence to the arts. The Nancy Hanks Lecture on Arts and Public Policy was established in 1988 to honor the memory of Nancy Hanks and to provide an opportunity for public discourse at the highest levels on the importance of the arts and culture to the nation's well-being.
Transcript of Robert MacNeil's lecture, for the 20th Annual Nancy Hanks Lecture on Arts and Public Policy on March 12, 2007.