Award-winning journalist, author returning to Lakeland
Student Life - posted on 10/16/2007
Jackie Spinner, one of the nation's most gifted young journalists and the author of a memoir about her experience covering the war in Iraq, will discuss that experience at Lakeland College on Tuesday, Oct. 23.
Spinner, who delivered Lakeland's 144th Commencement address in 2006, will discuss the post-traumatic stress disorder she suffers as a result of her time in Iraq beginning at 11 a.m. in Lakeland's Bradley Fine Arts Building. She will be joined on the stage by a pair of Lakeland psychology majors - Hannah Benton and Ashley Domask - who will ask her questions during the interactive event.
Spinner's appearance is free and open to the public. Copies of her book, "Tell Them I Didn't Cry," will be available for sale, and Spinner will sign copies following the discussion.
Spinner has enjoyed a swift rise to prominence in her profession, moving from summer intern at The Washington Post in 1995 to her arrival in Iraq in May 2004 as the junior member of the Washington Post bureau staff to serving as the Post's Baghdad bureau chief.
Her book delves into the difficulties of being a woman in a country where women are not free, and where most of the other journalists are men; of the Iraqi staff who became her family, close friends and colleagues; of disillusioning negative responses from Post readers in the States; and of becoming all too accustomed to mortars and car bombs, body guards and flak jackets.
Spinner has appeared on CNN's Larry King Live, MSNBC's "Hardball" with Chris Matthews, contributed to PBS, BBC, ABC and National Public Radio and was featured in a PBS Frontline documentary on reporting the war in Iraq.
Her book also features brief vignettes from Jackie's identical twin sister, Jenny, that offer a window into families waiting and worrying at home, as well as an epilogue about Jackie's return to Iraq in the fall of 2005 to cover the trial of Saddam Hussein.
It brings to life a reporter's exhilarating story of nine months covering the war from its center - in Baghdad, Fallujah, Kurdistan and Abu Ghraib - and being transformed, eventually, from rookie correspondent into a seasoned foreign reporter.
Spinner was a co-winner of the 2005 Distinguished International Reporting award from the Washington-Baltimore Newspaper Guild. Before working at the Post, Spinner contributed to the Oakland Tribune, the San Diego Tribune and the Los Angeles Times TV magazine.
A native of Illinois who now lives in Maryland, Spinner earned her bachelor's degree in journalism from Southern Illinois University in Carbondale and her master's degree at the Graduate School of Journalism at the University of California at Berkeley. She is a member of the Journalism and Women's Symposium and was a media fellow at Duke University in 2002.
For more information about Spinner and her book, visit her website www.tellthemididnotcry.com
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