Host, CNN’s Fareed Zakaria GPS
Syndicated Columnist, The Washington Post
Author, In Defense of a Liberal Education, The Post-American World, The Future of Freedom
David Gergen (Moderator)
Public Service Professor of Public Leadership, Harvard Kennedy School
Director, Center for Public Leadership, Harvard Kennedy School
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Fareed Zakaria is host of CNN’s flagship international affairs program — Fareed Zakaria GPS — a Washington Post columnist, a contributing editor at The Atlantic and a New York Times bestselling author. He was described in 1999 by Esquire Magazine as “the most influential foreign policy adviser of his generation.” In 2010, Foreign Policy named him one of the top 100 global thinkers.
Since 2008, Dr. Zakaria has hosted Fareed Zakaria GPS, which airs Sundays worldwide on CNN. His in-depth interviews with heads of government including Barack Obama, Narendra Modi, King Abdullah II, Hassan Rouhani, Moammar Gadhafi and David Cameron, and countless other intellectuals, business leaders, politicians and journalists, have been broadcast in more than 300 million homes around the world. Within its first year, GPS garnered an Emmy nomination for an interview with Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao. The show won the prestigious Peabody Award in 2011.
Dr. Zakaria currently writes an internationally syndicated weekly column on foreign affairs for the Washington Post. He also has been a contributing editor at The Atlantic since 2014.
From 2010 to 2014, Dr. Zakaria served as editor-at-large for TIME. Before that, he spent ten years overseeing all of Newsweek’s editions abroad. While his columns have received many awards, including a 2010 National Magazine Award, his October 2001 Newsweek cover story, “Why They Hate Us,” remains the most decorated. Before joining Newsweek, from 1992 to 2000, he served as managing editor of Foreign Affairs, a post he was appointed to at only 28 years old.
The Post-American World (2008) was heralded in the New York Times Book Review as “a relentlessly intelligent book,” and The Economist called it “a powerful guide” to facing global challenges. Like The Post-American World, The Future of Freedom (2003) was a New York Times bestseller and has been translated into over 25 languages. His most recent book, In Defense of a Liberal Education, has been praised in the New York Times as “an accessible, necessary defense of an idea under siege.”
Born in India on January 20, 1964, Dr. Zakaria went on to receive a B.A. from Yale College and a Ph.D. from Harvard University. He has received honorary degrees from numerous universities including Johns Hopkins, Brown, the University of Miami, and Oberlin College. He lives in New York City with his wife, son and two daughters.
David Gergen is a professor of public service and director of the Center for Public Leadership at the Harvard Kennedy School, positions he has held for over a decade. In addition, he serves as a senior political analyst for CNN and works actively with a rising generation of new leaders. In the past, he has served as a White House adviser to four U.S. presidents of both parties: Nixon, Ford, Reagan and Clinton. He wrote about those experiences in his New York Times best-seller, Eyewitness to Power: The Essence of Leadership, Nixon to Clinton (Simon & Schuster, 2001).
In the 1980s, he began a career in journalism. Starting with the MacNeil-Lehrer NewsHour in 1984, Professor Gergen has been a regular commentator on public affairs for some 30 years. Twice he has been a member of election coverage teams that won Peabody awards, and he has contributed to two Emmy award-winning political analysis teams. In the late 1980s, he was chief editor of U.S. News & World Report, working with publisher Mort Zuckerman to achieve record gains in circulation and advertising.
Over the years, Professor Gergen has been active on many non-profit boards, serving in the past on the boards of both Yale and Duke Universities. Among his current boards are The Mission Continues, The Trilateral Commission, and Elon University’s School of Law.
Professor Gergen's work as director of the Center for Public Leadership at the Kennedy School has enabled him to work closely with a rising generation of younger leaders, especially social entrepreneurs, military veterans and Young Global Leaders chosen by the World Economic Forum. Through the generosity of outside donors, the Center helps to provide scholarships to over 100 students a year, preparing them to serve as leaders for the common good. The Center also promotes scholarship at the frontiers of leadership studies.
A native of North Carolina, Professor Gergen is a member of the D.C. Bar, a veteran of the U.S. Navy, a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and a member of the U.S. executive committee for the Trilateral Commission. He is an honors graduate of Yale and the Harvard Law School. He has been awarded 27 honorary degrees.
Professor Gergen has been married since 1967 to Anne Elizabeth Gergen of England, a family therapist. They have two children and five grand-children. Son Christopher is a social entrepreneur in North Carolina as well as an author and member of the Duke faculty. Daughter Katherine is a family doctor, working with the underserved population at the Boston Medical Center