When New York Times op-ed columnist Nicholas Kristof returned to his hometown of Yamhill, Oregon, the portrait of life in rural America was grim. In a new book, written alongside Sheryl WuDunn, the team of the bestselling Half the Sky tells a story of how a once prospering blue-collar town was devastated by the loss of well-paying union jobs. Moving beyond this one part of the country, and showing a similar trend representative of places ranging from the Dakotas and Oklahoma to New York and Virginia, Tightrope illustrates deeply poignant portrayals of real Americans and investigates how decades of policy mistakes on issues like education, health care, and criminal justice effect far more than unemployment. Kristof and Wu Dunn—the first husband and wife to share a Pulitzer Prize for journalism—will take the stage to discuss new ways to end the crisis in working-class America.
Nicholas Kristof has coauthored several books with his wife, Sheryl WuDunn, including A Path Appears and Half the Sky. Together they were awarded a Pulitzer Prize in 1990 for their coverage of China. They also received the Dayton Literary Peace Prize for Lifetime Achievement in 2009. Now an op-ed columnist for the New York Times, Kristof was previously bureau chief in Hong Kong, Beijing, and Tokyo. He won his second Pulitzer in 2006 for his columns on Darfur.
Sheryl WuDunn has coauthored several books with her husband, Nicholas D. Kristof, including Half the Sky and A Path Appears. Together they were awarded a Pulitzer Prize in 1990 for their coverage of China. They also received the Dayton Literary Peace Prize for Lifetime Achievement in 2009. WuDunn worked at the New York Times as a business editor and foreign correspondent in Tokyo and Beijing. She now works in banking.
Willow Bay is the dean of the USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism and holder of the Walter H. Annenberg Chair in Communication. A veteran broadcast journalist and a leader in digital communication, Bay was previously the director of the USC Annenberg School of Journalism. Before that, Bay came to USC Annenberg from her post as senior editor and then senior strategic adviser of The Huffington Post. Her prominent broadcast experience includes reporting and anchoring for ABC News’ Good Morning America/Sunday and serving as a correspondent for Good Morning America and World News Weekend. Bay is the author of Talking to Your Kids in Tough Times: How to Answer Your Child’s Questions about the World We Live In.