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  • NYS Writers Institute

Telling the Truth 2020: Casey B. Mulligan and Joe Grogan

Welcome to Day 4 of Telling the Truth 2020, the New York State Writers Institute's virtual symposium on politics, tribalism, polarization, and the future of democracy.

Casey B. Mulligan and Joe Grogan

A Conversation with Key Trump Administration Insiders

Casey B. Mulligan served as the Chief Economist of President Trump’s Council of Economic Advisers (Sept. 2018-Aug. 2019). His new book is You’re Hired!: Untold Successes and Failures of a Populist President (Sept. 2020), which provides a front row seat for anyone interested in policy and politics inside the Trump White House. David R. Henderson of Stanford University's Hoover Institution said, "Profound, important, entertaining, economically solid, and easy to read. It will be one of the most important books of 2020." Professor of Economics at the University of Chicago, Mulligan has published numerous opinion pieces for the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, New York Post and Chicago Tribune. Joseph Grogan served as Director of the United States Domestic Policy Council and assistant to President Donald Trump (Feb. 2019-May 2020). He earned a B.A. in English in 1994 at the University at Albany, where he studied with the late Tom Smith, Director of the New York State Writers Institute. Grogan served as Trump’s lead advisor on a variety of domestic policy issues relating to health care, regulation, economic expansion, commercial space exploration, environment, agriculture, civil rights, and education. On the subject of health care policy, he is widely recognized as a thought leader on the political right.  Grogan's dramatic expansion of the Domestic Policy Council from a minor office to a central White House advisory body is the subject of a June 2019 feature article in The Atlantic, "How a Forgotten White House Team Gained Power in the Trump Era." Joseph Grogan's LinkedIn page.


“It’s our hope that Telling the Truth 2020 will be a force for good and will provide a public service by bringing together experts with a wide range of perspective. We want these events to be conversations of healing, of finding common ground, and of listening respectfully to viewpoints different than our own. We hope this weeklong symposium will build bridges of empathy rather than erecting more walls of fear and hatred.”

-- Paul Grondahl, Director of the NYS Writers Institute.

All events are free and open to the public. No registration required.

Events will be available at ​Videos will premiere at 11 a.m. and can be viewed at your convenience at any time following their launch. Many of the conversations were recorded before Election Day. More at at

Telling the Truth 2020 is the Writers Institute’s third major event of the fall season, following the Albany Book Festival in September and the Time for Reckoning Symposium in October. It is also the third time the Institute has turned its attention to issues of truth-telling, journalism, and ethics. A three-day Telling the Truth in a Post-Truth World event was held in 2017 and Telling the Truth: A Symposium on the Craft of Nonfiction took place in 1991.

Telling the Truth 2020 is presented by the New York State Writers Institute with special thanks to The Maguire Family Endowment at the NYSWI, The Opalka Family Endowment, Rockefeller College of Public Affairs & Policy at the University at Albany, The University at Albany Foundation, and WAMC Northeast Public Radio.


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