Author, Alumnus Joe Persico Addresses UAlbany's Class Of 2010 At Commencement

Author, Alumnus Joe Persico Addresses UAlbany's Class Of 2010 At Commencement


During the University at Albany's 166th Commencement, author and alumnus Joseph Persico, '52, delivered the keynote address to UAlbany's Class of 2010. Persico, author and former speechwriter for New York Governor Nelson A. Rockefeller, received a bachelor's degree in English and political science from the New York State College for Teachers (now known as the University at Albany), in 1952. He served for three years in the U.S. Navy aboard a minesweeper and also with the North Atlantic Treaty Organization Headquarters in Naples, Italy. In 1956, Persico began his political writing career, serving Governor W. Averell Harriman as a writer and researcher. Persico became the chief speechwriter for Governor Rockefeller in 1966. Continuing in this position for seven years, he remained Rockefeller's primary speechwriter as the Governor assumed the office of Vice President of the United States from 1974 to 1977. In 1977, Persico transitioned into a full-time author, focusing on historical subjects. In that year, his Civil War piece, My Enemy My Brother: Men and Days of Gettysburg, was released. Two years later, he followed up this work with a novel, The Spiderweb, and a nonfiction study, Piercing the Reich: The Penetration of Nazi Germany by American Secret Agents During World War II. In 1982, Persico focused on Nelson Rockefellers life and published the biography, The Imperial Rockefeller. During the 1990s, Persico created other historical works on both American espionage and the Nuremberg War Crimes Trials following World War II. These works were Casey: From the OSS to the CIA and Nuremberg: Infamy on Trial. Persico collaborated with former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and later Secretary of State, Colin L. Powell, on his autobiography, My American Journey. In November 2001, Random House Inc. released Roosevelts Secret War: FDR and World War II Espionage and in 2004, Eleventh Month, Eleventh Day, Eleventh Hour: Armistice Day, 1918, World War I and Its Violent Climax was published.

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