Musician, author, actor, and political activist Steve Earle began his career as a protégé of legendary songwriters Townes Van Zandt and Guy Clark. He became an esteemed songwriter in his own right as his songs were recorded by Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson, Emmylou Harris, Waylon Jennings, the Pretenders, and Joan Baez, among others. Earle’s debut record, Guitar Town, was number one on the country charts and established the term “New Country” for its blend of rock and country. He won Grammy Awards for the albums The Revolution Starts…Now, Washington Square Serenade, and Townes. He has also worked as an actor, appearing in the HBO series The Wire and Treme. Earle’s debut novel, I’ll Never Get Out of This World Alive, was published in 2011, along with an album of the same title.
Steve Earle is an American singer-songwriter, record producer, author and actor. Earle grew up near San Antonio, Texas, and began learning the guitar at age 11.
Earle began his career as a songwriter in Nashville and released his first EP in 1982. His breakthrough album was the 1986 Guitar Town. Since then Earle has released 13 other studio albums and received three Grammy awards. His songs have been recorded by Travis Tritt, Vince Gill, Shawn Colvin and Emmy Lou Harris. He has appeared in film and television, and has written a novel, a play, and a book of short stories.
William P. Kelly is president of the Graduate Center of the City University of New York, the doctoral-granting institution of the nation's largest university. From 1998 through June 2005, he served as the Graduate Center's provost and senior vice president, a tenure that was marked by the recruitment of a remarkable cadre of internationally renowned scholars to the school's faculty.
A distinguished American literature scholar and an expert on the works of James Fenimore Cooper, Dr. Kelly is the author of Plotting America's Past: Fenimore Cooper and the Leatherstocking Tales. His essays and reviews have appeared in a broad range of publications including the Times Literary Supplement, the New York Times Book Review, and The American Scholar. He is the editor of the Random House edition of The Selected Works of Washington Irving and the Oxford University Press edition of The Pathfinder. He is currently at work on a book about John Jacob Astor.
Dr. Kelly graduated summa cum laude from Princeton University in 1971, where he won the David Bowers Prize in American Studies. He was named Outstanding Graduate Student in English at Indiana University, where he received his Ph.D. in 1976. Dr. Kelly also holds a diploma in intellectual history from Cambridge University and in 1980 received a Fulbright Fellowship to France, where he subsequently became visiting professor at the University of Paris. He was also executive director of the CUNY/Paris Exchange Program and, in 2003, was named Chevalier dans l'Ordre des Palmes Académiques by the French Ministry of Education in recognition of his contributions to Franco-American educational and cultural relations.
On the faculty of CUNY's Queens College from 1976 to 1998, he was named Queens College's Golden Key Honor Society Teacher of the Year in 1994. He was appointed concurrently to the faculty of the Graduate Center's Ph.D. Program in English in 1986 and served as the program's executive officer from 1996 to 1998.
Dr. Kelly is the vice chairman of the CUNY Research Foundation and serves as a trustee of the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation.