Guest Lecturer

Randy Roberts

For the first time on a PC cruise, the President’s Council welcomes guest lecturer Randy Roberts, Distinguished Professor of History in the Purdue College of Liberal Arts. Professor Roberts’s expertise and engaging style will add color and depth to the beautiful vistas and history offered through this Rhine river adventure.

Randy Roberts, Distinguished Professor of History at Purdue University, was the 2015-2016 Charles Boal Ewing Chair of Military History at West Point.  In addition to winning the Charles B. Murphy Outstanding Teaching Award at Purdue University and twice receiving Teacher of the Year in the School of Liberal Arts, he won the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching Indiana Professor of the Year.  He is the only member of the School of Liberal Arts to receive the Morrill Award, Purdue University’s “highest career achievement recognition for a faculty member.”  He specializes in teaching military history (including course on World War I and World War II), sports history, and popular culture.

Roberts is also an award-winning, best-selling author.  He has won several national book awards, and has been nominated for the Pulitzer Prize four times.  His most recent book, coauthored with Johnny Smith, is Blood Brothers: The Fatal Friendship Between Muhammad Ali and Malcolm X, which received featured reviews in the Los Angeles Times, the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, the London Times, the National Review, and other newspapers and magazines.

Among his other books are Jack Dempsey: The Manassa Mauler (1979); Papa Jack: Jack Johnson and the Era of White Hopes (1983); “But They Can’t Beat Us”: Oscar Robertson and the Crispus Attucks Tigers (1999); Joe Louis: Hard Times Man (2010); A Team for America: The Army-Navy Game That Rallied a Nation and (2011); Rising Tide: Bear Bryant, Joe Namath, and Dixie’s Last Quarter (2013); and with James S. Olson John Wayne American (1995), A Line in the Sand: The Alamo in Blood and Memory (2000); Winning Is the Only Thing: Sports in America since 1945 (1989); and Where the Domino Fell: America and Vietnam, 1945-1990 (1989).  Roberts has served frequently as a consultant and on-camera commentator for PBS, HBO, and History Channel.  Two of the documentaries he was feature on won Emmy Awards.

He lives in Lafayette, Indiana, with his wife Marjie.