Alexander Heffner
Alexander Heffner

Alexander Heffner, host of “The Open Mind” on PBS, comes to the University of New Mexico on April 30. His topic, scheduled for the Willard Room in Zimmerman Library at 5:30 p.m. will be on “Millennials, Media and the Future of Civil Discourse.” The talk is sponsored by the Office of Academic Affairs and is free and open to the public.

UNM Provost Chaouki Abdallah encourages all members of the UNM community to attend. “Heffner is especially interested in encouraging students to become more politically involved,” said Abdallah. “This is a good opportunity to hear from a nationally recognized speaker on an issue of great interest.”

Heffner succeeded his grandfather as host of “The Open Mind” on PBS, the oldest running program in public television history. A review from the New York Times notes that “For over a half-century, the show has offered a "thoughtful excursion into the world of ideas"...elevating the national discourse with meaningful insights from leading thinkers, policymakers and dignitaries, among them Martin Luther King, Jr.,Elie Wiesel, Milton Friedman, William F. Buckley,Gloria Steinem and Helen Gurley Brown.”

“The Open Mind” focuses on the challenges of contemporary public policy...particularly at the intersection of our democracy and society.

Heffner is a graduate of Andover and Harvard. In 2012 he was a special correspondent for “Need to Know” crisscrossing the nation to chronicle the millennial vote. He founded and edited SCOOP08 and SCOOP44, the first ever national student newspapers covering the 2008 campaign and the Obama administration.

Heffner’s writing has appeared in the “Wall Street Journal,” the “Washington Post,” the “Boston Globe,” the Philadelphia Inquirer,” “USA Today,” “Newsday,” “American Way Magazine” and “RealClearPolitics.” He is the co-author of “A Documentary History of the United States,” an anthology employed in college and high school classrooms.