29 September 2022 • Alums Governor Chris Christie, James Carville and Bill Whitaker Headline Fall Stern Family Forum

As part of Hobart’s Bicentennial celebration, former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie and political commentator and strategist James Carville LL.D. ’13, P’17 will join HWS and the community for a panel discussion moderated by Emmy Award-winning 60 Minutes Correspondent and HWS Trustee Bill Whitaker '73, L.H.D.'97.

On Friday, Oct. 21, Republican Chris Christie and Democrat James Carville LL.D. ’13, P’17 will sit down to talk politics, the state of public discourse in the U.S., and the November elections. HWS Trustee Bill Whitaker ’73, L.H.D. ’97, who has won two Emmys, most recently as a correspondent for 60 Minutes, will serve as moderator.

The fall Stern Family Forum event, which kicks off a weekend of celebrations in honor of Hobart College’s Bicentennial, begins at 7:30 p.m. at the Smith Opera House on Seneca Street. The event is free and open to the public. Doors will open at 6:30 p.m. 

The Stern Family Forum, generously funded by Honorary Trustee Herbert J. Stern ’58, P’03, LL.D. ’74 and Trustee Samuel A. Stern ’03, was created to support annual public discussions with notable guests who bring nuance to difficult, sometimes controversial subjects.

“The Stern Forum continues to engage our campus in our contemporary political moment,” says Provost and Dean of Faculty Sarah Kirk, one of the forum’s organizers. “This fall’s guests have unique insight into the events and personalities that continue to shape the national dialogue, and I look forward to hearing the conversation spurred by Bill Whitaker’s thoughtful and incisive questions.”

Christie served two terms as the 55th governor of New Jersey. A former U.S. Attorney for the District of New Jersey, he ran for president in 2016 and chaired Donald Trump’s transition to the White House. He has chaired the Republican Governors Association and President Trump’s Opioid and Drug Abuse Commission. Since leaving office, he’s been a regular commentator on ABC News. He is the author of Let Me Finish, a political autobiography, and Republican Rescue, about the party’s future. He serves on the board of directors for the New York Mets.

Carville is a prominent Democratic consultant and political commentator. Often referred to as the “Ragin’ Cajun,” he was the lead strategist for the successful election in 1992 of Bill Clinton as the 42nd president of the United States. Carville is the former co-host of CNN’s Crossfire and has provided consultation to campaigns in more than 20 countries. He teaches political science at Tulane University. A former U.S. Marine, he received his undergraduate and law degrees from Louisiana State University. In 2013, Carville delivered the Hobart and William Smith Commencement address and was awarded an honorary degree.

As a CBS 60 Minutes correspondent, Whitaker has reported stories from across the world on a wide range of issues. His investigation into the origins of the opioid crisis won more awards than any other 60 Minutes work, among them the DuPont Columbia University award, the Peabody, an Emmy and an RTDNA Murrow award. In 2021, Whitaker received the 2021 ICFJ Founders Award for Excellence in Journalism and in 2022 was presented with the Joseph M. Quinn Award for Lifetime Achievement, the Los Angeles Press Club’s highest recognition. A member of the HWS Board of Trustees since 2001, Whitaker chairs its Belonging, Diversity and Equity Committee. He has spoken on campus on a number of occasions, including the 1997 and 2008 Commencement ceremonies. In 1997, he was awarded an honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters for his service to HWS.

Attendees with special needs should contact The Smith Opera House in advance at 315-781-5483 Tues.-Fri. from 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. or email boxoffice@thesmith.org.

Questions about the event should be directed to Mary LeClair, Associate VP of Communications at HWS, at leclair@hws.edu, 315-781-3697; or Kelly Young, Assistant VP for Development at HWS, at keyoung@hws.edu, 315-781-3783.

This article was originally posted August 26, 2022.