Peter Slevin is a veteran national and international reporter who spent a decade on The Washington Post’s national staff before coming to Northwestern in 2010. Based in Chicago starting in 2004, he produced deadline work and deeply reported stories from more than two dozen states, focusing particularly on politics and the home front of the Iraq and Afghan wars. He has written extensively about Barack Obama’s trajectory, as well as covering political campaigns and policy debates from one end of the country to the other. He pursued a particular interest in the home front of the Iraq and Afghan wars, producing pieces about soldiers and their preparations for war, their return home and the impact of war on their families, communities and public opinion.
Slevin started his career at a small afternoon daily in Hollywood, Fla., then moved to The Miami Herald, where he spent seven years as European Bureau Chief, chronicling the collapse of communism in central Europe and the Soviet Union in the late ’80s and early ‘90s. Later, he produced two four-part series on Cuba and covered the U.S. military intervention in Haiti for the Herald before moving to Washington to become chief diplomatic correspondent for Knight Ridder Newspapers during the Clinton administration.
He joined the Post in 1998, spending two years covering Washington, D.C. He crossed to the National staff in 2000 in time for the Bush-Gore recount in Florida and the Clinton presidential pardon scandal. As a diplomatic correspondent after the 9/11 attacks, he wrote extensively about U.S. foreign policy and the Iraq war, concentrating on the Bush administration’s controversial post-war planning process and the aftermath of the 2003 invasion.
After moving to Chicago, Slevin traveled widely for the Post. He covered Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans and the devastating 2010 earthquake in Haiti, as well as shootings at Fort Hood, Tex., the debate over smart power grids and the fight over immigration in Arizona. On the political front, he produced work at the intersection of politics and religion and helped chart the rise of Barack and Michelle Obama and the victorious 2008 campaign. Slevin delivered stories on paper and on the Web, increasingly adding photographs, video and blog posts. He remains a Post contributor.
At Medill, Slevin is developing a concentration in political reporting while also working with students on foreign and military coverage. In 2012, he is leading a new undergraduate seminar titled “Politics, Media and the Republic” and a graduate class on presidential election coverage. Along the way, with an appointment as a senior lecturer in Northwestern’s International Studies program, he developed an upper-level seminar, “The United States and the Battle for Iraq” and a lecture course, “Dilemmas of American Power,” focusing on the U.S. role in the world from the Vietnam War to the Arab Spring. He is a member of the International Studies Program Advisory Committee.
Slevin has a B.A. in history from Princeton and an M.Phil. in international relations from Oxford.