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Pulitzer-Winning Journalist to Deliver President's Lecture Oct. 27

By Brendan O'Hallarn

Walter V. Robinson, the investigative reporter and editor who led The Boston Globe's investigation into sexual abuse by officials of the Catholic Church, will deliver Old Dominion University's next entry in the President's Lecture Series on Thursday, Oct. 27.

Robinson, who serves as editor at large at The Boston Globe after seven years as distinguished professor of journalism at Northeastern University, will speak at 7:30 p.m. in Old Dominion's Ted Constant Convocation Center.

Talks in Old Dominion's President's Lecture Series are always free and open to the public, but space is limited, so attendees are encouraged to RSVP online.

In 2001 and 2002, Robinson led the Spotlight team, which won the Pulitzer Prize for Public Service for its investigation of the sexual abuse of children by Catholic priests. The team's groundbreaking investigation exposed a decades-long cover-up, which, in Boston alone, shielded the crimes of nearly 250 priests. The team's work sparked similar disclosures across the country and around the world.

Spotlight's investigation was made into the Academy Award-winning film "Spotlight,'' starring Mark Ruffalo and Rachel McAdams. Michael Keaton played Robinson.

In the mid-1970s, Robinson covered politics and government for the Globe. He went on to write about the White House during the Reagan and first Bush administrations. He covered the presidential election in 1984 and was the newspaper's lead reporter for presidential elections in 1988 and 1992. In 2000, he did investigative reporting on that year's candidates.

In 1990 and 1991, Robinson was the paper's Middle East bureau chief during the first Persian Gulf War. Robinson became the Globe's city editor in 1992 and then for three years the metro editor. In the late 1990s, he was the Globe's roving foreign and national correspondent, spending much of that time reporting on artworks looted by the Nazis during World War II that ended up in American museums. For his reporting on the illicit trade in antiquities, he received the first-ever outstanding public service award from the Archaeological Institute of America in 1999.

As a journalism professor, Robinson and his students produced 26 Page One investigative stories for The Boston Globe.

Before joining the Globe in 1972, he served for four years in the U.S. Army, including a year in Vietnam as an intelligence officer with the First Cavalry Division.

Robinson is a 1974 graduate of Northeastern University. He has been awarded honorary degrees by Northeastern and Emerson College. Robinson has served as a journalism fellow at Stanford University and co-wrote the 2002 book "Betrayal: Crisis in the Catholic Church."

Old Dominion University's President's Lecture Series serves as a marketplace for ideas, featuring fascinating personalities who share their knowledge, experience, opinions and accomplishments. Discussing timely topics, the series puts diversity first, showcasing authors, educators, business innovators and political figures.

An author signing will take place following the lecture with books provided by the University Village Bookstore.

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