NY Times reporter to speak at Kiva today

Kristen Russo

On May 4, 1970, John Kifner, a special reporter for the New York Times, came to Kent State to cover the protests that ended in the fatal shootings of four students.

Kifner – now The New York Times‘ Beirut correspondent – will recall his experiences as a journalist during a presentation at 6 p.m. today at the Kiva.

The event is joint-sponsored by The New York Times Knowledge Network, Undergraduate Student Senate, Kent Interhall Council, the School of Journalism and Mass Communication and the Honors College.

Ross Miltner, Undergraduate Student Senate executive director, said he hopes Kifner’s speech will fill the Kiva to maximum capacity.

“It’s one of the best journalists The New York Times has,” Miltner said. “(He’s) one of the best political correspondents in the country.”

John Behnken, May 4 Task Force president, is also looking forward to welcoming Kifner back to Kent State.

“As the only national journalist here at the time of the event, his work helped draw national attention to the event,” Behnken said. “His work over the past few decades is astonishing and his efforts, amazing.”

Miltner said Kifner’s visit was originally scheduled for late April, but was canceled when Kifner was sent to the Middle East as a news correspondent.

He added Kifner will visit a few journalism classes as a bonus before his speech.

“It’s going to be great for the journalism students because he’s such an icon in the field,” Miltner said.

Associate Provost Laura Davis said she hopes Kifner’s speech will give some insight into what’s happening in the Middle East and will get people to start talking more about what the United States should do strategy-wise.

To read Kifner’s article as it was published in The New York Times on May 5, 1970, visit http://www.nytimes.com/learning/general/onthisday/big/0504.html#article.

Contact College of Communication and Information reporter Kristen Russo at [email protected].