Convocation speaker announced

Humorist Ben Stein will be the 2006 Senior Convocation speaker, Richard Walker, assistant vice president for student affairs, told The Hurricane Monday. He will speak on April 19 at 6:30 p.m. in the BankUnited Center, and the event will be open to students, faculty, staff and invited guests.

Stein, an award-winning actor as well as economist, lawyer and journalist, is perhaps best known for his portrayal of the economics teacher in Ferris Bueller’s Day Off and for his Comedy Central quiz show, Win Ben Stein’s Money, for which he won six Emmy awards. Stein also writes columns for a variety of print media, including a regular one for the conservative magazine, The American Spectator.

Before acting, Stein worked a speechwriter for Presidents Richard Nixon and Gerald Ford. He was a columnist and editorial writer for The Wall Street Journal and later a TV sitcom writer and movie scriptwriter. He has published 17 books, the latest being Can America Survive?: The Rage of the Left, the Truth, and What to Do About It, with Phil DeMuth.

Stein, who spoke at Ithaca College’s commencement last year, taught politics of film and TV at American University in Washington, D.C., and later at the University of California-Santa Cruz. He has also taught at Pepperdine University Law School.

Stein attended Montgomery Blair High School in Silver Spring, Md., with Sylvester Stallone, Carl Bernstein, Goldie Hawn and Connie Chung. He earned a B.A. in economics with honors from Columbia University, and he was valedictorian of the Yale Law School class of 1970. Stein was active in the civil rights movement, and he later worked as a poverty lawyer.