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Panelist Bio

Robert Travis Scott
President, Public Affairs Research Council of Louisiana • Moderator, Louisiana Public Square

Veteran news reporter Robert Travis Scott has been named president of the Public Affairs Research Council of Louisiana (PAR), replacing Jim Brandt who recently announced his retirement. Scott will begin his work at PAR on Dec. 1, 2010.

Scott has served the citizens of the state for the past 14 years by providing breaking news and in-depth coverage of political and economic developments in Louisiana. As capital bureau chief at The Times-Picayune and previously as business editor, he has extensive experience communicating effectively with government and business leaders. He brings to PAR a rich background in communications, policy analysis and nonprofit management supported by a passion for making Louisiana a better place to live and prosper.

His previous experience also includes serving as business editor at The Greenville News in Greenville, S.C., and associate director and editor of the Arms Control Association, a nonprofit based in Washington, D.C., that is an authority on nuclear arms negotiations. Scott attended the University of South Carolina where he earned a Bachelor of Arts degree with honors in international studies in 1979. He also engaged in graduate studies in international security and economics at John Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies.

Scott has received regional and national recognition for in-depth news coverage, investigative reporting projects and writing. He also is a former president of the Baton Rouge Press Club.

“Considering Robert’s many years of experience dealing with public policy issues as a journalist in this state, he is ideally suited to lead the charge and push Louisiana policy forward with the development of evidence-based policy solutions to the state’s most pressing problems,” said Dr. Jim Richardson, who headed PAR’s presidential search committee.

“The PAR board is proud to name Robert as the eighth president of PAR,” said PAR Board of Directors Chairman Donna Saurage. “With his proven leadership skills and solid reputation as an objective authority on state policy, we are certain that he will carry the organization through to a strong future.”

The Public Affairs Research Council (PAR) is a private, nonprofit, non-partisan public policy research organization focused on pointing the way toward a more efficient, effective, transparent and accountable Louisiana government. PAR was founded in 1950 and is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization supported by foundation and corporate grants and individual donations. PAR has never accepted state government funds.

Current Topic

10/16 - Election 2016

What concerns are on citizens’ minds as they go to the polls this fall?

The presidential election may be getting all of the attention, but Louisiana residents will be making several important decisions at the ballot box in November. The U.S. Senate seat left up for grabs by retiring Sen. David Vitter has drawn a field of 24 candidates. Louisianians in the south- and northwest parts of the state will also be voting on congressmen. So, what national concerns are on citizens’ minds as they go to the polls this fall? What statewide issues should be on the mind of Louisiana’s next Congressional leaders? Louisiana Public Square looks for answers on “Election 2016” Wednesday, October 26 at 7p.m.

Our Panelists:

• Elizabeth Crisp / The Advocate
• Greg Hilburn / Gannett Newspapers
• Martin Johnson, Ph.D. / LSU Manship School of Mass Communication
• Albert Samuels, Ph.D. / Mandela School of Public Policy, Southern University

LPB CEO Beth Courtney and Patricia Smith, with the College of Government and Social Sciences at Southern University, moderate the discussion.

“Election 2016” can also be heard on public radio stations WRKF in Baton Rouge; Red River Radio in Shreveport and Monroe; and WWNO in New Orleans. Check their station websites for schedule.

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