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Former White House Press Secretary
Mike McCurry to Be Devroy Forum Speaker

RELEASED: April 7, 2005

Mike McCurryEAU CLAIRE — Mike McCurry, former White House press secretary and State Department spokesperson, will be the featured speaker at the Ann Devroy Memorial Forum April 19 at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire.

The 2005 Ann Devroy Memorial Forum is slated for 7:30 p.m. April 19 in Schofield Auditorium. The title of McCurry's presentation is "Spinners and Snarks: Troubled Times in the Press-Politician Relationship and What to Do About It."

McCurry, a veteran communications strategist and spokesperson with nearly three decades of experience in Washington, D.C., served in the White House as press secretary to President Bill Clinton from 1995-98. Prior to joining the White House staff, he was spokesman for the Department of State from 1993-95.

From 1988-1990, McCurry was director of communications for the Democratic National Committee. He was national press secretary for the 1988 vice presidential campaign of Sen. Lloyd Bentsen. He was spokesman and political strategist in the Democratic presidential campaigns of Sen. John Glenn, Gov. Bruce Babbitt and Sen. Bob Kerrey in 1984, 1988 and 1992, respectively.

McCurry began his political career on the staff of the United States Senate, working from 1976-81 as press secretary to the Senate Committee on Labor and Human Resources and to the Committee's chairman. From 1981-83, he was press secretary to Sen. Daniel Patrick Moynihan.

Currently, McCurry is a principal partner of Public Strategies, a Washington, D.C.-based public affairs and strategic communications consulting firm where he has practiced since leaving the White House. McCurry also serves as chairman of Grassroots Enterprise Inc., an issue advocacy software provider.

McCurry serves on boards or advisory councils for Share Our Strength, the Center for International Private Enterprise, the Council for Excellence in Government, the Junior Statesmen Foundation, the Children's Scholarship Fund, the Wesley Theological Seminary, and the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University.

McCurry earned a bachelor's degree from Princeton University in 1976 and a master's degree from Georgetown University in 1985.

The Ann Devroy Memorial Forum and Devroy Memorial Fund were established to recognize the outstanding journalistic work of 1970 UW- Eau Claire graduate Ann Devroy, who died of cancer in 1997 at the age of 49.

Devroy, a Green Bay native, was a White House correspondent — often described as the most challenging and glamorous assignment in journalism — for more than 15 years. She covered the Carter, Reagan, Bush and Clinton administrations.

Devroy began her journalism career while still a student at UW-Eau Claire, interning at the Milwaukee Journal and reporting for the Eau Claire Leader-Telegram. After graduating, she worked for the Bridgewater, N.J., daily The Courier-News, owned by the Gannett Co. In 1977, she moved to Gannett News Service's Washington bureau. She covered Congress for two years before becoming White House correspondent for Gannett and the USA Today. She joined The Washington Post in 1985.

Pulitzer Prize-winning political correspondent David S. Broder — who in 1998 was the first Devroy Forum speaker — called his late Washington Post colleague "the most dogged, determined, complete reporter any of us ever saw."

The Devroy fund awards a scholarship and helps defray the cost of a three-week residency at The Washington Post for Devroy winners. Winners also have paid internships at Wisconsin daily newspapers. The Devroy winner is announced during the Forum presentation.

The Ann Devroy Memorial Forum is sponsored by The Washington Post Co., UW-Eau Claire communication and journalism department, UW-Eau Claire Foundation Inc., Wisconsin Newspaper Association, Eau Claire Leader-Telegram and The Forum lecture series.

The forum event is free and open to the public, but tickets are required for admission. Reserved seating tickets are available at the University Service Center, (715) 836-3727. Remaining tickets will be available at the door.

For details about the Devroy fund or forum, contact Karen Kremer, chair of the department of communication and journalism, at (715) 836-4431 or kremerkm@uwec.edu.

-30-

JB

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