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Frank Bruni        

First Openly Gay Op-Ed Columnist at The New York Times; Bestselling Author

Frank Bruni is a New York Times Op-Ed columnist and the author of three bestselling books: a 2002 chronicle of George W. Bush’s initial presidential campaign, "Ambling into History;" a 2009 memoir, "Born Round," about the joys and torments of his eating life; and a 2015 reflection on higher education, "Where You Go Is Not Who You’ll Be: An Antidote to the College Admissions Mania."

His career at The New York Times spans more than 20 years and includes stints as a White House correspondent, chief restaurant critic, the Rome bureau chief and a staff writer for the Sunday magazine. He came to The New York Times from The Detroit Free Press where he was, alternately, a war correspondent, the chief movie critic and a religion writer. At the Free Press he was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in feature writing for a narrative profile of a convicted child molester.

In his Op-Ed columns, which appear every Sunday and Wednesday, he reflects on diverse topics including American politics, higher education and gay rights. He is The New York Times's first openly gay Op-Ed columnist, has twice won Glaad's award for best newspaper columnist and was honored by the National Lesbian and Gay Journalists Association with its Randy Shilts Award for his lifetime contributions. He appears frequently as a commentator on CNN, MSNBC and other networks, was a guest judge on "Top Chef" and popped up briefly in the movie "Julie & Julia."

Bruni grew up in the New York City and Hartford, Conn., areas, and in 1986 graduated with a B.A. in English from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, which he attended as a Morehead Scholar and where he was inducted into Phi Beta Kappa. In 1988 he received a master's in journalism with highest honors from Columbia University, where he graduated second in his class and won a Pulitzer Traveling Fellowship.

Speech Topics

An Extraordinary Journalistic Adventure

Frank takes the audience on a lively journey through his varied, versatile career that has spanned movie coverage, Vatican reporting, the presidential campaign trail, and restaurant criticism. From flying on the Pope’s plane, to sitting on the back porch in Kennebunkport with George H.W. Bush and Barbara Bush, to dining with Sarah Jessica Parker and Matthew Broderick, to riding in a Bradley Fighting Vehicle across Saddam Hussein’s Iraq for several days, Frank’s career has run a fascinating gamut.

Life as the New York Times Restaurant Critic

The life of, and behind the scenes with, the person who held the most influential restaurant critic post in the land for five and a half years.

Born Round

Frank discusses some of the themes explored in his New York Times bestselling book Born Round: childhood obesity; diet and fitness; the restaurant industry; the restaurant scene, and being the New York Times restaurant critic.

The First Openly Gay Op-Ed Columnist for the New York Times

When Frank was named an Op-Ed columnist in June 2011, he became the first openly gay or lesbian person in that post in the Times' 160-year history, and he has written about gay issues in his column. He can speak about the fight for gay marriage, about gay rights in general, and about being an openly gay man on the front lines of American journalism. He covered a president who knew he was gay; he wrote restaurant reviews that were sometimes analyzed through the prism of his sexual orientation. He can also discuss the ways, and degrees, by which many workplaces (as exemplified by the New York Times) welcome their openly LGBT employees.


Throughout his career at the Times, Frank has been a political reporter, and he frequently comments about American politics in his current twice-weekly Op-Ed column, delving into voter habits, politicians' psyches, and more. He can speak about the state of American politics, the nature and nuttiness of American campaigns, and the shortcomings and strengths of our system. From 1999 to 2001, he covered George W. Bush's presidential campaign and White House, and he wrote the New York Times-bestselling Ambling into History: the Unlikely Odyssey of George W. Bush.


A Bold Bid for Better Schools -
By FRANK BRUNI. Published: October 28, 2013. If there's a key to this nation's sustained competitiveness, it's education. And if there's a key to the kind of social  ...
Frank Bruni, Former Restaurant Critic, on the Joys of Repeat Visits ...
Frank Bruni, a former Times restaurant critic, praises the virtues of visiting a favorite spot again and again.

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