Award-winning Journalist to Speak in Beckley, Wednesday, July 23

For Immediate Release: 
Apr 27 2008

CONTACT: William “Bill” O’Brien, Director, Concord University Beckley Center
1-304-256-0270, > Beckley

Award-winning Journalist to Speak in Beckley, Wednesday, July 23

Athens, W.Va. – David Cay Johnston, former investigative journalist for the New York Times and 2001 Pulitzer Prize winner for beat reporting, will speak at the Erma Byrd Higher Education Center, room E-10, on Wednesday, July 23 at 7 p.m. The public is invited and admission is free.

Bill O’Brien, director of Concord University’s Beckley Center, said of Johnston, “He has become an important force in understanding our tax laws. His research has revealed the impact of current tax laws on society as a whole. These laws, he argues, are increasing the gap between rich and poor in America by giving credibility to concerns about corporate socialism. I would guess that Johnston remains in favor of the principle of progressive taxation, but that he would see our current system as regressive because of what it does to working people.

“Our plans are to broadcast the presentation live on the Internet -- that should ensure a listening audience that is global in scope. The presentation on July 23rd will be available on ,” he concluded.

Johnston most recently published Free Lunch: How the Wealthiest Americans Enrich Themselves at Government Expense and Stick You With The Bill – an expose about hidden subsidies, rigged markets, and corporate favoritism. This book follows Perfectly Legal: The Covert Campaign to Rig Our Tax System to Benefit the Super Rich--and Cheat Everybody Else, a New York Times bestseller.

Johnston received the 2001 Pulitzer Prize for beat reporting "for his penetrating and enterprising reporting that exposed loopholes and inequities in the U.S. tax code.” His work was instrumental in bringing about reforms. He also won the Book of the Year award from Investigative Reporters & Editors.

In 1968, Johnston began his career at the San Jose Mercury News. In 1973, he left the Mercury News to study at the University of Chicago under a five-month fellowship. He then took a position as an investigative reporter at the Detroit Free Press, and later worked as a reporter for the Los Angeles Times from 1976 to 1988. He then worked as a reporter at The Philadelphia Inquirer in 1988. Johnston joined The New York Times in February 1995. Johnston resides with his wife, Jennifer Leonard, in Rochester, N.Y.; they have eight children and five grandchildren.


PHOTO: David Cay Johnston

CONCORD UNIVERSITY NOTES: Persons with disabilities should contact Nancy Ellison, 1-304-384-6086 or 1-800-344-6679, extension 6086 if special assistance or help is required for access to an event scheduled by the University on campus.

Corrie McKee, a senior majoring in English and journalism wrote this news release. Her hometown is Nitro.