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Leonard Steinhorn Professor School of Communication

Additional Positions at AU
Affiliate Professor of History
BA History, Vassar College; MA History, Johns Hopkins University

Leonard Steinhorn is a professor of Public Communication and an affiliate professor of History. His expertise includes American politics, culture and media, strategic communication, the presidency, race relations, the 1960s, and recent American history. He is author of The Greater Generation: In Defense of the Baby Boom Legacy, and co-author of By the Color of Our Skin: The Illusion of Integration and the Reality of Race. He has published in books, journals, the Washington Post, Salon, New York Times, Politico, The Hill, International Herald Tribune, Huffington Post, and History News Network among others, and he is the founding editor of PunditWire, where political speechwriters comment on the news. Steinhorn was twice named AU Faculty Member of the Year, and he also was named Honors Professor of the Year in 2010. Since 2012 he has served as a political analyst for CBS News, and before that he was a political analyst for FOX-5 News in Washington, DC. Before joining the AU faculty, he spent 15 years as a political consultant and speechwriter.

AU Experts

Area of Expertise

Politics, presidency, campaigns, the religious right, American culture, baby boom generation, race relations, social movements, civil rights, public relations, communication, journalism ethics, mass media, popular culture, Ferguson, 1960's

Additional Information

Leonard Steinhorn teaches political communication, public relations, media studies, and courses on American culture and the modern presidency. He is author of the critically acclaimed book The Greater Generation: In Defense of the Baby Boom Legacy (St. Martin's Press, 2006), and he is coauthor of the highly regarded By the Color of Our Skin: The Illusion of Integration and the Reality of Race (1999). Steinhorn writes and lectures frequently about politics, presidential campaigns, race relations, social movements, American history, youth issues, generations, mass media, and trends in American culture. His work has appeared in books and scholarly publications as well as in magazines and newspapers including, the Washington Post, Politico, International Herald Tribune, Baltimore Sun, and the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. From 1999 to 2001, he was a contributing editor of the Internet political journal In 2001 he joined the board of the history and politics Internet site, where he regularly blogs and contributes articles. In 2010, he cofounded the new commentary site for speechwriters,, where he contributes regular columns. He comments regularly in the media on the presidency, political campaigns, and the media's role in politics and elections. CBS News, MSNBC, CNN, NBC, Fox, PBS, NPR, WTOP, BBC, AP, and the Washington Post, Boston Globe, and Los Angeles Times have quoted him, and he is the political analyst for Washington, D.C.'s, FOX-5 News. Before joining American University, he was a campaign and congressional speechwriter, political consultant, and an advocate for human rights, civil liberties, and racial tolerance. His previous positions included speechwriter for the House Judiciary Committee and editor of the religious-right monitoring newsletter, Right Wing Watch. Steinhorn's approach to teaching became internationally visible when CNN came weekly to cover his course on the 2000 election, Presidential Campaign 2000: Inside the War Room and the Newsroom. The course was covered by Washington, D.C.’s, NBC affiliate and FOX-5 during the 2004 and 2008 elections, respectively. Steinhorn was twice named AU Faculty Member of the Year; he also has been named AU's Honors Professor of the Year; and from 2002 to 2004 he served as president of AU's Phi Beta Kappa chapter.

For the Media

To request an interview for a news story, call AU Communications at 202-885-5950 or submit a request.

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