John Kerry to highlight Aspen Ideas Festival lineup

Staff report
FILE PHOTO: U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry stresses a point Tuesday at the 2016 Aspen Ideas Festival.
Aspen Institute/Dan Bayer courtesy photo |

Former Secretary of State John Kerry is among the speakers and panelists slated to appear at the upcoming Aspen Ideas Festival, The Aspen Institute announced Wednesday.

Kerry will be participate in an Afternoon of Conversation set for 3 p.m. June 27 at the Benedict Music Tent, with interviewer Andrea Mitchell.

Other panelists will include New York Times columnist David Brooks, Jonathan Capehart of The Washington Post, Jelani Cobb of The New Yorker, Katie Couric, Peter Marks of The Washington Post, Elissa Soloman and Nadine Strossen of New York Law School, and Jose Antonio Vargas of Define American.

Afterward will be a performance by Broadway actors, in collaboration with Theatre Aspen, as well as panel discussions about performing arts.

The Ideas Fest runs June 21 to 30, with Spotlight Health scheduled June 21 to 24.

Other highlights include:

• Noon, June 22, Hotel Jerome ballroom, podcast taping of Kaiser Health News “What the Health?” — Health journalist Julie Rovner will lead the discussion with Montana Gov. Steve Bullock and Gov. John Hickenlooper.

• 5:30 p.m., June 23, Hotel Jerome ballroom, “Legislators Who Built Obamacare Look Back and Ahead” — Henry Waxman, Sander Levin, George Miller, Max Baucus and Christopher Dodd will talk about the passage, impact and future of the Affordable Care Act.

• 8 p.m., June 23, Hotel Jerome ballroom — Filmmaker Ava DuVerney will speak with Damian Woetzel on how culture can create a more just and healthy society.

• 5:30 p.m., June 28, Hotel Jerome ballroom, “Hip-Hop Collision: Music, Racism, and the Law” — Attorney Drew Findling and client Kiari “Offset” Cephus will explore the intersection of criminal justice, race and hip-hop.

• 8:30 p.m., June 28, Hotel Jerome ballroom, “After #MeToo: The Way Forward for Women in the Media” — Examining the state of the industry with Couric, Susan Page, Rebecca Blumenstein, Mona Charen, Adrienne Green and moderator Shannon Van Sant of USA Today.

Tickets will be available Friday through Aspen Show Tickets at the Wheeler Opera House, online at, or by calling 970-920-5770. A full list of ticketed events will be available at