Distinguished journalist Dan Rather to speak at May 4


Dan Rather

Lydia Taylor

 Journalist Dan Rather will speak at Kent State Friday, May 4 for the Presidential Speaker Series, according to a Kent State press release.

“His presentation is in collaboration with the College of Communication and Information and coincides with annual May 4 Commemoration events and the dedication of the May 4 site as a National Landmark,” the press release said.

This year marks the 48th anniversary of May 4, when Ohio National Guardsmen fired into a crowd of demonstrators protesting the Vietnam War, killing four and wounding nine others. 

Rather covered a variety of events, including 9/11, Watergate, the assassination of John F. Kennedy and the collapse of the Berlin Wall.

He joined CBS News in the 1960s and eventually went on to replace Walter Cronkite as the CBS Evening News anchor in 1981. Rather also worked in radio. 

In 2012, Rather received the Edward R. Murrow Lifetime Achievement Award, which honors those who have “fostered the growth, quality, and positive image of public radio,” according to the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.

“The ripple effect of the May 4 shootings at Kent State played a part in Mr. Rather’s coverage of many key events throughout the early 1970s and the end of the Vietnam War,” the press release said.

The location and time of the event will be announced at a later date.

The university paid Rather $46,000, including lodging and airfare, according to a records request.

Lydia Taylor is the editor. Contact her at [email protected]