John King, CNN’s chief national correspondent and host of “John King, USA,” will be at William & Mary Thursday to broadcast his show live from the steps of the College’s historic Sir Christopher Wren Building.
CNN has invited members of the campus community to attend the hour-long broadcast, which will air live in the College Yard at 6 p.m. The broadcast will include an interview with William & Mary alumnus and former Secretary of Defense Robert M. Gates ‘65, who will be installed the following day as the College’s 24th Chancellor. King will tape the interview earlier in the day and broadcast it during the hour-long show from outside the Wren. “John King, USA,” airs at 6 p.m. Monday through Friday at 6pm ET, 5pm CT, 4pm MT and 3pm PT.
The event brings a national spotlight on the nation’s second-oldest College. The College’s Office of University Relations has been working with King and CNN producers over the past two weeks to arrange the live broadcast.
“We are delighted that ‘John King, USA,’ is coming to campus to broadcast live on the eve of our 319th birthday celebration. This will be great exposure for the College,” said Brian Whitson, director of university relations. “We are very thankful that Secretary Gates has been so generous with his time and was willing to take part in this interview. He essentially made this entire broadcast possible. This will be a lot of fun for everyone at William & Mary.”
King has been a familiar face during presidential elections since joining CNN in 1997. He served as CNN’s senior White House correspondent from 1999 to 2005 when he became the network’s chief national correspondent. This year, King has already moderated two GOP presidential candidate debates, including CNN’s broadcast two weeks ago prior to the South Carolina Republican primary.
Gates, who served from 2006 to 2011 under former President George W. Bush and President Barack Obama, is the only defense secretary in the nation’s history to serve two presidents from different political parties. Prior to becoming defense secretary, he served in numerous capacities in the Executive Branch and worked for eight presidents. He is also the former director of the Central Intelligence Agency. From 2002 to 2006, Gates was president of Texas A&M University.
In addition to his appearance on CNN, Gates will give the keynote address during Friday’s College’s Charter Day ceremony. The event, which will be held at 4 p.m. at William & Mary Hall, marks the 319th anniversary of the awarding of the Royal Charter from King William III and Queen Mary II of England establishing the College. During the ceremony, Gates will also be invested as the College’s next Chancellor. He succeeds retired U.S. Supreme Court Associate Justice Sandra Day O’Connor. Tickets are not required.
For more information on the broadcast, the W&M Student Assembly has launched an event page on facebook inviting members of the College community to attend.