CPB Media Room

CPB's America at a Crossroads Announces Formation of Board of Advisors to Guide Post-9/11 Television Initiative

  • August 10, 2004

Initiative Draws Record 431 Film Proposals from across US, around World

WASHINGTON, D.C. August 10, 2004 - The Corporation for Public Broadcasting today announced formation of an expert advisory board to help guide America at a Crossroads, CPB's $20 million initiative to bring films on America's post-9/11 challenges and opportunities to public television.

The board will include leading foreign policy, security, democracy and human rights experts, whose differing perspectives and views will help guide selection of 20 to 25 films for national broadcast in 2005-6.

"We're hugely excited about this Crossroads initiative, which is going to make excellent use of what television does best -- help us all understand important issues through a medium that has enormous power to educate," said Kathleen Cox, president and CEO of CPB. "You can't say more about the mission of public broadcasting than this."

Michael Pack, CPB's senior vice president for television programming, said, "CPB is delighted with the depth of expertise represented on the advisory board. We are deeply appreciative of the members' commitment to serve."

The CPB project has drawn an unprecedented response -- 431 proposals from producers in 34 states and eight countries. More than half the proposals are from producers who are new to CPB.

The advisory board members are:

Max Boot -- Senior Fellow in National Security Studies at the Council on Foreign Relations. He is also a contributing editor to The Weekly Standard, a weekly columnist for the Los Angeles Times, and a regular contributor to The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal and The Financial Times.

Dr. Esther Brimmer -- Former State Department Policy Planning Staff, Clinton Administration. Presently Deputy Director and Director of Research at the Center for Transatlantic Relations at SAIS, The Johns Hopkins University.

Dr. Deborah Harding -- Senior Program Officer at the German Marshall Fund of the United States. Currently Vice President of the Open Society Institute (Soros Foundation).

Christopher Hitchens -- Vanity Fair columnist, The Atlantic Monthly book critic, visiting professor of Liberal Studies at the New School in New York, author of forthcoming Thomas Jefferson study.

Ambassador Jeane Kirkpatrick -- Former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations in Reagan Administration, Georgetown University professor, internationally known author and commentator. Presently Senior Fellow, Director of Foreign and Defense Policy Studies at the American Enterprise Institute.

Mara Liasson -- National Political Correspondent and commentator for National Public Radio and The FOX News Network.

The Honorable Frank Loy -- Former President, German Marshall Fund of the United States, and Under Secretary of State for Global Affairs in the Clinton Administration.

Azar Nafisi -- Visiting Fellow and lecturer at the Foreign Policy Institute of Johns Hopkins University, SAIS. Author of bestselling Reading Lolita in Tehran: A Memoir in Book, has written extensively on political implications of literature and culture.

Ambassador Michael Novak -- U.S. Ambassador to the Conference on Security and Cooperation in Europe; twice Ambassador, UN Human Rights Commission in Geneva. Currently Jewett Scholar in Religion, Philosophy and Public Policy at American Enterprise Institute.

John O'Sullivan -- Formerly Special Advisor to Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, Editor of National Review, Associate Editor of The London Times. Currently Editor of The National Interest, Editor-at-Large of National Review.

Clarence Page -- Nationally syndicated columnist and member of Chicago Tribune's editorial board since 1984, regular essay contributor to The News Hour with Jim Lehrer.

Ambassador Dennis Ross -- Special Middle East Coordinator during Clinton administration, Director of State Department's Policy Planning Staff in first Bush administration. Currently Counselor and Ziegler Distinguished Fellow at Washington Institute for Near East Policy.

CPB also has formed a second advisory group of PBS station managers from across America to advise CPB distribution, broadcast, outreach and promotion of the Crossroads films. The members are:

Julie Anderson, Executive Director, South Dakota Public Broadcasting

Kevin Harris, Vice President and Television Station Manager, WETA, Washington, D.C.

Tom Holter, Executive Director of Programming, Twin Cities Public Television

Byron Knight, Director of Broadcast and Media Innovations, Wisconsin Public Television

Bob Olive, Director of Broadcast Services, Georgia Public Broadcasting

Mike Seymour, President/CEO, The Programming Service

Bill Young, Vice President, Television Programming, KERA, North Texas Public Television and Radio

Dan Schmidt, President & CEO, WTTW, Chicago, Illinois

The Crossroads proposals are currently undergoing internal and external reviews. Crossroads film grants are expected to be awarded beginning in September.

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The Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB), a private, nonprofit corporation created by Congress in 1967, is the steward of the federal government's investment in public broadcasting. It helps support the operations of more than 1,400 locally-owned and -operated public television and radio stations nationwide, and is the largest single source of funding for research, technology, and program development for public radio, television and related online services.

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