FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: September 28, 2022 (put out whenever useful)
Contact: Ben Lasky/Bob Weiner 301-283-0821, cell 202-306-1200


(Washington, DC and Amherst, MA)--Robert (Bob) Weiner, 1971-72, former Watergate, White House, and congressional senior staffer and a UMass History Alum (M.A. '74), a recent winner of the Washington, DC National Press Club President's Award for his program recruiting young journalists as oped writers in major papers, will be back on campus Thursday, October 6 to discuss "Watergate Through January 6--Is American Democracy Going Backward and What Can be Done?" Following Weiner's opening remarks, interactive questions and comments will be encouraged.

The event will be at 2:30 PM on Thursday, October 6 in HERTER HALL ROOM 601 Weiner was invited by History Department Chair Brian Ogilvie and Professor Daniel Gordon, whose U.S. Constitutional History Class is having the lecture. The event is open to the media and the public. Bob wanted to thank Professors Ogilvie and Gordon for inviting him and wants to "congratulate the History Department for having a sizzling speaker series including Pulitzer winners and the 1619 Project author, and allowing me to have a small part in this busy great schedule!"

The Umass Events website states the event is free and open to the public:

Weiner served as National Youth Voter Registration Director for the Democratic National Committee's headquarters, in the Young Democrats' office, at the famed Watergate Office Building in 1971 and 1972, after the 26th Amendment was adopted giving 18 year-olds the vote for the first time (see, original Washington Post article

Following the 1972 election, Weiner completed his M.A. at UMass in History, and then worked for Cong. Ed Koch, Claude Pepper (as Chief of Staff of the House Aging Committee), Charles Rangel, John Conyers, Sen. Ted Kennedy, and Four-Star Gen. Barry McCaffrey. In addition to the national Democratic youth vote position, he was also spokesman for the House Narcotics Committee, the House Judiciary Committee (under Chairman Conyers), the House Government Operations Committee (also under Chairman Conyers), and spokesman for the White House Drug Policy office (Under Drug Policy Director McCaffrey). During the Clinton Administration, Bob was subpoenaed by Clinton Whitewater prosecutor Ken Starr, and after his testimony Bob was featured as the lead on NBC Nightly News (Tom Brokaw), ABC World News (Peter Jennings), as well as interviewed on "Today" and "Good Morning America", saying on the courthouse steps and in the coverage and interviews that his experience with Ken Starr was "Big Brother at its worst."

Bob now directs and in 2016 won the National Press Club's prestigious President's Award for his ongoing program recruiting young journalists to co-byline opeds with him in top papers. He has published over 1000 opeds in major papers through the program and is a regular radio-TV commentator. He has directed the Daily Press Briefing Room in the 2016, 2012, and 2008 Democratic National Conventions (2020 was a virtual convention). He won the National Press Club Vivian Award three times for outstanding recruiting and organizing VIP speakers' events, and has covered the White House and Congress extensively for his writing on presidential and congressional action, issues, and legislation.

In his talk, he will give an insider's view of the Nixon Watergate scandal and aftermath, Clinton's Whitewater and Lewinsky interfaces with prosecutor Ken Starr and the country's reaction, and Donald Trump's actions related to democracy and the January 6 insurrection on the Hill together with election impacts then and now -- for starters! He looks forward to questions and comments on all these events, and seeing what UMass and Amherst area young and older minds think are the trends and actions needed.

Bob now resides in the Washington, DC area and is an active member of the National Press Club. He is also on the Board of Governors of the National Democratic Club. While in Amherst in the 1970's and 80's, he was active in politics and issues as Vice Chair of the Amherst Democratic Town Committee, a statewide student organizer for Sen.Ted Kennedy, organizer of the Nuclear Freeze Rally at UMass with 20,000 participants, Chair of the Hampshire County New Voters Committee, a member of the Gray Panthers, and was the Democratic nominee for Congress from Western Massachusetts in 1986. An avid runner then and now, he was also President of the Sugarloaf Mountain Athletic Club and chaired/directed two Road Runners National Championships in Amherst.

For all Bob's opeds see:

Complete website: