Monday, March 27, 2006

Journalist and telecommunications professor Steve Bell will speak at Fairmont State at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, April 6, in the Turley Center Ballroom as part of the Celebration of Ideas Lecture Series.

No tickets are required, and admission is free and open to the public. For more information, call (304) 367-4215.

"It is the goal of Fairmont State to create a campus environment where open exchange of ideas is both promoted and celebrated," said Michael Belmear, Vice President for Student Affairs. "We believe that the development of our student body must include exposure to a variety of ideas. Through this exposure, our students will be better prepared to operate in an increasingly complex society."

Bell is Professor of Telecommunications at Ball State University in Muncie, Ind. He is Endowed Chair Emeritus in Telecommunications and a former department chair. He is active as a public speaker, panelist and writer and in special projects for television and radio.

Bell's prestigious network and local news career has made him an eyewitness to many historic events. From 1967-1968, he was a correspondent for ABC News. He was familiar to millions of Americans as news anchorman for ABC's "Good Morning America." He regularly interviewed newsmakers and reported from the scene of major news events, including presidential elections and overseas trips of Presidents Nixon, Ford, Carter and Reagan.

After joining ABC News in 1967, Bell covered the social upheavals then reshaping the nation, including the Newark and East Harlem riots and anti-war protests in Washington. His reports from Newark were described in Variety as "one of the most moving and chilling examples yet of on-the-scene reporting." He also covered the assassination and funeral of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and was on the scene when Sen. Robert Kennedy was shot in 1968.

Beginning as a war correspondent in 1970, Bell has reported extensively from Vietnam and Indo-China. In Cambodia in 1970, he and his camera crew were captured by the Viet Cong. While held briefly at gunpoint, he managed to record the incident. On the 10th anniversary of the end of the war in 1985, Bell filed the first live satellite report from Vietnam.

Beginning with a tour as ABC Bureau Chief in Hong Kong in 1972, Bell also has reported extensively from the People's Republic of China, including a two-month assignment in 1973 when he and Ted Koppel wrote and co-anchored a China documentary. He also served as a White House correspondent during Watergate and the Ford administration.

Since coming to Ball State, Bell has moderated national and international conferences and teleconferences. He has presented papers in the U.S., China and Korea. In 1966, he wrote and produced a Vietnam documentary for Public Television based on a Ball State study abroad trip. Since 1998, he has directed seminars on "Politics and the Media" for the Washington Center for Internships and Academic Seminars.

Bell has received several Emmy awards, an Overseas Press Club Award and a Headliner's Award. A native of Oskaloosa, Iowa, he has a B.A. degree from Central College in Iowa and an M.S. in Journalism from Northwestern University. His wife, Joyce, is an accomplished musician and vocalist who has taught voice at Ball State.