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Kathryn Kolbert to Head People For the American Way

Kathryn Kolbert, who joined the Annenberg Public Policy Center in 1999 and launched NPR’s Justice Talking radio program the following year, is leaving to become president of People For the American Way, a national advocacy organization dedicated to preserving constitutional liberties and promoting American values.

Kolbert will assume her new duties in Washington, D.C., March 17.

Taking over as executive producer of Justice Talking will be Ingrid Lakey, currently the program’s director of communications. Lakey joined the Justice Talking staff three years ago.

In announcing Kolbert’s appointment, Norman Lear, founder of People For the American Way, said: “We are thrilled to have found someone whose passion for the Constitution is matched by her ability to use culture and technology to engage Americans in its defense.”

Kolbert will succeed Ralph G. Neas, who led the organization for eight years.

Under Kolbert’s leadership, Justice Talking, and a companion program, Justice Learning, have received 21 national awards. Justice Talking, hosted by NPR’s Margot Adler, is broadcast in nearly 100 public radio markets in the U.S., on Sirius Satellite Radio and in 140 countries around the world.

Kolbert is a graduate of Temple University School of Law and Cornell University School of Arts and Sciences. She has been an adjunct professor at the University of Pennsylvania and co-authored several books including Justice Learning’s Hip Pocket Guide to the U.S. Constitution, published by Oxford University Press.