Miller Center

Edward M. Kennedy Oral Histories

The Edward M. Kennedy Project interviews cover a broad range of politically and biographically important topics, including Kennedy's pre-Senate years and mastering politics, his relationship to his brothers and their career choices, his rise to the Senate leadership, his political style, his Senate and presidential campaigns, his public causes and how he sought to advance them, and his legacy.

In addition to interviews with Senator Kennedy, the program's scholars interviewed others who knew him in various contexts, from different vantage points and throughout his life.  The end product is a collection of 280 oral history interviews, 29 of those with Senator Kennedy himself. more →

Interviews (A-Z by last name)

Respondent Position
Gerry Adams President, Sinn Féin Party
Bertie Ahern Prime Minister (Taoiseach) of Ireland
Dermot Ahern Ireland's foreign minister
Stuart Altman (not yet released) Health policy adviser to Presidents Nixon and Clinton
Nan Aron (not yet released) Outside policy adviser; President, Alliance for Justice
Melody Barnes Staffer for Edward Kennedy
William G. Barry (not yet released) Outside policy adviser on security arrangements and expertise; family friend
Robert Bates (5/2007) Staffer for Edward Kennedy
Robert Bates (7/2007) Staffer for Edward Kennedy
Birch Bayh (not yet released) United States Senator from Indiana; family friend
Samuel Beer Harvard professor; president of Americans for Democratic Action
Joseph R.  Biden (not yet released) Vice-President of the United States; Senator from Delaware
Jeffrey Blattner Staffer for Edward Kennedy
David Blumenthal National Coordinator for Health Information Technology
David Boies Chief Counsel, Senate Judiciary Committee
David Bowen, Mark Childress, Michael Myers (not yet released) Bowen: staff director for health policy; Childress: senior advisor on health care reform on HELP committee; Michael Myers: staff director and chief counsel for HELP committee
Stephen Breyer (6/2008) Associate Justice, US Supreme Court
Stephen Breyer (9/2008) Associate Justice, US Supreme Court
David Broder Journalist, White House Press Corps
Edward W. Brooke Massachusetts Senator
David Burke (2007) Edward Kennedy's Chief of Staff; President of CBS News
David Burke (2008) Edward Kennedy's Chief of Staff; President of CBS News
Sheila Burke Chief of Staff to Robert Dole; Senate Finance Committee Aid
Robert C. Byrd Senator, West Virginia
Mary Beth Cahill (not yet released) EMK Chief of Staff (2001-03)
Joseph Califano (not yet released) Secretary of Health, Education, and Welfare under President Carter
Philip Caper Staffer for Edward Kennedy
Richard Clasby Friend of Edward Kennedy
Adam Clymer Reporter, The New York Times
Thad Cochran Mississippi Senator
Ranny Cooper (2007) (not yet released) EMK Chief of Staff (1987-1992)
Ranny Cooper (2008) (not yet released) EMK Chief of Staff (1987-1992)
Thomas Costin Kennedy supporter; former Postmaster
Gregory Craig White House Counsel; Foreign Policy Advisor to Edward Kennedy and Madeline Albright
John Culver (03/2005) Senator from Iowa, staffer for Edward Kennedy; friend
John Culver (06/2007) Senator from Iowa, staffer for Edward Kennedy; friend
John Culver (09/2009) Senator from Iowa, Legislative Assistant to Edward Kennedy; friend
Stephanie Cutter (not yet released) EMK Senior Communications Adviser; Communications Director
John Danforth Senator, Missouri; US Permanent Representative to United Nations
Thomas A. Daschle Senator, South Dakota; Senate Majority Leader
Dale DeHaan (not yet released) Staff, Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Refugees; EMK Speechwriter
Eugene A. Dellea Campaign aide
John D. Dingell, Jr.  Member of the House of Representatives
E.J. Dionne (not yet released) Journalist, New York Times and Washington Post
Gerard Doherty Attorney; Kennedy volunteer; friend of Edward Kennedy
Robert Dole Kansas Senator
Sean Donlon, Garret Fitzgerald, Michael Lillis (not yet released) Donlon: Irish Ambassador to U.S.; Fitzgerald: Prime Minister of Ireland; Lillis: Irish embassy official in Washington, DC
Paul Donovan (not yet released) EMK Press Secretary ; EMK Chief of Staff
John W. Douglas Assistant Attorney General; Civil Rights Advocate
Donald Dowd Campaign aide
Michael Dukakis Governor, Massachusetts; 1988 Democratic Presidential Nominee
Thomas Francis Eagleton (not yet released) United States Senator from Missouri
Stuart Eizenstat Domestic policy advisor to Jimmy Carter
Michael Enzi (2006) United States Senator from Wyoming
Michael Enzi (2009) United States Senator from Wyoming
David Espo Special Correspondent, Associated Press
John A. Farrell Reporter, The Boston Globe
Anthony S. Fauci AIDS Researcher
Judy Feder Staffer for Edward Kennedy
Rashi Fein Staffer for Edward Kennedy
Kenneth Feinberg Counsel, Senate Judiciary Committee; chief of staff to EMK
Dan H. Fenn, Jr. Director of the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library
Lee Fentress Assistant United States Attorney; Staffer for Robert Kennedy
Charles Ferris (not yet released) Staff Director, Senate Democratic Policy Committee (1963-1977) and former chairman of FCC
Max Fine Executive Director, Committee for National Health Insurance
Garret FitzGerald Prime Minister of Ireland
Alice Fitzgerald and Patricia Hagan Kennedy volunteers
Robert P. Fitzgerald, Sr. Cousin of Edward Kennedy; Lawyer
James Flug (11/2007) (not yet released) Legislative Assistant and then Chief Counsel to Senator Kennedy
James Flug (12/4/2007) (not yet released) Legislative Assistant and then Chief Counsel to Senator Kennedy
James Flug (12/18/2007) (not yet released) Legislative Assistant and then Chief Counsel to Senator Kennedy
Wyche Fowler US Ambassador to Saudi Arabia; Senator, Georgia
Mary Frackleton Staffer for Edward Kennedy
Michael J.  Frazier (not yet released) Legislative Assistant to Senator Kennedy
John Kenneth Galbraith (not yet released) Founder of Americans for Democratic Actiion; adviser to President Kennedy; Ambassador to India for President Kennedy
Ann Gargan Cousin
Connie Garner (2008) (not yet released) Policy director for Disability and Special Populations for the US Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee (HELP)
Connie Garner (2010) (not yet released) Policy director for Disability and Special Populations for the US Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee (HELP)
Kilvert Dun Gifford Staffer for Edward Kennedy
Leroy Goldman Staff Director, Senate Subcommittee on Health
Willis D. Gradison, Jr. Ohio Congressman
Marcia Greenberger (not yet released) Founder and Co-President of the National Women's Law Center
Ellen Guiney Chief Education Advisor to the U.S. Senate Committee on Labor and Human Resources
Milton Gwirtzman (05/2009) Speechwriter, Advisor to Edward and Robert Kennedy
Milton Gwirtzman (08/2009) Speechwriter, Advisor to Edward and Robert Kennedy
Charles Haar Harvard Law Professor
Timothy Hanan Friend; Campaign Manager
Brian and Alma Hart Activists; Parents of Fallen Soldier (PFC. John Hart)
Terry Hartle (not yet released) Education staff director for the Senate Committee on Labor and Human Resources
Orrin Hatch (not yet released) United States Senator from Utah
Robert Healy Journalist, The Boston Globe
Antonia Hernandez Counsel to Senate Judiciary Committee
William J. Vanden Heuvel (2005) Special Assistant to the Attorney General; Deputy U.S. Permanent Representative to United Nations
William J. Vanden Heuvel (2006) Deputy U.S. Permanent Representative to United Nations & other positions
John Hilley Director, White House Office of Legislative Affairs, under Bill Clinton
Claude Jr. Hooton (not yet released) Friend and law school classmate
Larry Horowitz (4/15/2008) (not yet released) Chief of Staff to Senator Kennedy and longtime health adviser
Larry Horowitz (4/16/2008) (not yet released) Chief of Staff to Senator Kennedy and longtime health adviser
Larry Horowitz (2010) (not yet released) Chief of Staff to Senator Kennedy and longtime health adviser
John Hume Irish Social Democratic and Labour Party President
Robert Hunter Foreign Policy Adviser to Edward Kennedy
Lester Hyman Chairman, Massachusetts Democratic Party
Michael Iskowitz (2007) (not yet released) Chief Counsel on Poverty, Disability & Family Policy
Michael Iskowitz (2008) (not yet released) Chief Counsel on Poverty, Disability & Family Policy
Christopher Jennings (not yet released) Health care aide to President Clinton
John F. Jennings President, Center on Education Policy
Olatunde Johnson Civil rights policy adviser to Edward Kennedy
Stanley Jones (03/2007) EMK staffer; healthcare specialist
Stanley Jones (09/2007) EMK staffer; healthcare specialist
Jan Kalicki Chief Foreign Policy Advisor to Edward Kennedy
Nancy Kassebaum Senator, Kansas
Boris And Natalya Katz Soviet Refuseniks
Nicholas Katzenbach U.S. Attorney General, 1965-66
Edward Kennedy Jr., Kara Kennedy, Patrick Kennedy (not yet released) Children of Senator Kennedy born in 1960 (Kara), 1961 (Edward, Jr.), and 1967 (Patrick)
Edward M. Kennedy (03/23/2005) Senator
Edward M. Kennedy (6/3/2005) Senator
Edward M. Kennedy (6/17/2005) Senator
Edward M. Kennedy (10/14/2005) Senator
Edward M. Kennedy (2/27/2006) Senator
Edward M. Kennedy (3/20/2006) Senator
Edward M. Kennedy (5/08/2006) Senator
Edward M. Kennedy (8/15/2006) Senator
Edward M. Kennedy (11/29/2006) Senator
Edward M. Kennedy (12/1/2006) Senator
Edward M. Kennedy (01/06/2007) Senator
Edward M. Kennedy (02/12/2007) Senator
Edward M. Kennedy (4/3/2007) Senator
Edward M. Kennedy (05/30/2007) Senator
Edward M. Kennedy (5/31/2007) Senator
Edward M. Kennedy (8/7/2007) Senator
Edward M. Kennedy (8/8/2007) Senator
Edward M. Kennedy (10/8/2007) Senator
Edward M. Kennedy (10/9/2007) Senator
Edward M. Kennedy (12/9/2007) Senator
Edward M. Kennedy (1/7/2008) Senator
Edward M. Kennedy (3/28/2008) Senator
Victoria R. Kennedy Wife of Senator Kennedy, Attorney, Democratic activist
John Kerry Secretary of State; Senator, Massachusetts; 2004 Democratic Presidential Nominee
David Kessler Staffer for Orrin Hatch; Commissioner, Food and Drug Administration
James King (not yet released) Senior advisor and special assistant to Senator Kennedy
Paul G. Kirk, Jr. (11/2005) Special Assistant to Edward Kennedy; DNC Chairman; Senator, Massachusetts
Paul G. Kirk, Jr. (06/2007) Special Assistant to Edward Kennedy; DNC Chairman; Senator, Massachusetts
C. Everett Koop (not yet released) United States Surgeon General under President Reagan
Barnett Alexander “Sandy” Kress Education Advisor to George W. Bush
Mathilde Krim (not yet released) Founding chairman of American Foundation for AIDS Research (amfAR)
Kathy Kruse (not yet released) Cultural Policy Advisor, Senior Counselor to Senator Kennedy
Barbara Lahage Staffer for Edward Kennedy
Patrick Leahy Senator, Vermont
Anthony Lewis Columnist, New York Times
John Lewis Congressman, Georgia
Judith Lichtman Former Director for National Partnershp for Women and Families
Nick Littlefield (5/3/2008) (not yet released) Staff Director and Chief Counsel for Senator Kennedy on the U.S. Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee
Nick Littlefield (5/4/2008) (not yet released) Staff Director and Chief Counsel for Senator Kennedy on the U.S. Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee
Nick Littlefield (6/30/2008) (not yet released) Staff Director and Chief Counsel for Senator Kennedy on the U.S. Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee
Nick Littlefield (7/1/2008) (not yet released) Staff Director and Chief Counsel for Senator Kennedy on the U.S. Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee
Nick Littlefield (2/14/2009) (not yet released) Staff Director and Chief Counsel for Senator Kennedy on the U.S. Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee
Nick Littlefield (2/15/2009) (not yet released) Staff Director and Chief Counsel for Senator Kennedy on the U.S. Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee
George Cabot Lodge Assistant Secretary of Labor for International Affairs in Eisenhower & Kennedy administrations
Chester Trent Lott Senator, Mississippi
Richard Lugar Senator, Indiana
Nance Lyons Legislative Assistant to Edward Kennedy; Civil Rights Attorney
Neil Macneil Journalist and television correspondent
Ira Magaziner (not yet released) White House adviser on health care reform for President Clinton
James Manley Press Secretary for Edward Kennedy
Thurgood Marshall, JR. Staffer for Edward Kennedy
Edward Martin Staffer for Edward Kennedy
Charles Mathias Former Senator, Maryland
John Mccain Senator, Arizona
Paul McDaniel Aide to Senator Al Gore Sr.; Adviser to Edward Kennedy
Cindy McGinty Founder & President, McGinty Scholarship Fund; Board Member, Mass Military Heroes Fund
Alice Mcgoff Professor of History, University of Massachusetts
George Mcgovern Senator from South Dakota; former Democratic Presidential nominee
Barbara Mikulski Senator, Maryland
George Miller Congressman, California
Melody Miller (07/2008) Staffer for Kennedy Family
Melody Miller (10/2008) Staffer for Kennedy Family
Melvin Miller Editor and Founder, Bay State Banner
George Mitchell Senate Majority Leader; Senator, Maine
Walter Mondale Vice President
James Mongan Staffer for Russell Long
Ellis Mottur (10/2006) Kennedy staffer; science/technology expert
Ellis Mottur (11/2006) Kennedy staffer; science/technology expert
Michael Myers (2006) Staffer for Edward Kennedy
Michael Myers (10/16/2009) (not yet released) Chief counsel and staff director to Senator Kennedy
Ralph Neas (not yet released) Former Executive Director of the nonpartisan Leadership Conference on Civil Rights (LCCR), and the Leadership Conference Education Fund
David Nexon Staffer for Edward Kennedy
Martin Nolan Reporter, The Boston Globe
Barack Obama (not yet released) President of the United States, former United States Senator, Illinois
Niall O’Dowd Journalist; Liaison between Sinn Féin and the White House
Sean O’Huiginn Irish Ambassador to United States; Joint Secretary, British-Irish Secretariat; Irish Consul General (New York)
Esther Olavarria Staffer for Edward Kennedy
Thomas Oliphant (11/15/2006) (not yet released) Boston Globe reporter and columnist
Thomas Oliphant (3/14/2007) (not yet released) Boston Globe reporter and columnist
Carolyn Osolinik Judiciary Committee Staff Attorney for Senator Edward Kennedy
Joel Packer (not yet released) Former Director of Educational Policy and Practice, National Education Association
Peter Parham (not yet released) Special assistant on education to Senator Kennedy
Carey Parker (09/2008) Chief Legislative Assistant for Edward Kennedy
Carey Parker (10/06/2008) Chief Legislative Assistant for Edward Kennedy
Carey Parker (10/13/2008) Chief Legislative Assistant for Edward Kennedy
Carey Parker (10/20/2008) Chief Legislative Assistant for Edward Kennedy
Carey Parker (10/27/2008) Chief Legislative Assistant for Edward Kennedy
Carey Parker (11/10/2008) Chief Legislative Assistant for Edward Kennedy
Carey Parker (11/17/2008) Chief Legislative Assistant for Edward Kennedy
Carey Parker (12/2008) Chief Legislative Assistant for Edward Kennedy
Thomas Payzant Assistant Secretary for Elementary and Secondary Education; Superintendent of Boston Public Schools
Nancy Pelosi Speaker of the House
Danica Petroshius Chief of Staff to Edward Kennedy
Elizabeth Philipps Mother of Pan-Am Flight 103 Victim, Sarah Phillips
Caroline Raclin Daughter of Vicki Reggie Kennedy
Curran Raclin Son of Vicki Reggie Kennedy
Ken Regan Photographer
Doris and Edmund Reggie (8/2005) Father-in-law and mother-in-law; long-time family friends
Doris and Edmund Reggie (12/2008) Edward M. Kennedy’s father-in-law and mother-in-law; family friends; Kennedy supporters
Harry Reid (not yet released) Senate Majority Leader; Senator, Nevada
Albert Reynolds (not yet released) Former Taoiseach of Ireland
Donald Riegle (7/8/2008) (not yet released) Congressman and United States Senator, Michigan
Donald Riegle (9/1/2009) (not yet released) Congressman and United States Senator, Michigan
Richard Riley Secretary of Education under Clinton
Terri Haddad Robinson (7/22/2009) Staffer for Kennedy
Terri Haddad Robinson (8/25/2009) Former aide and press assistant to Senator Kennedy
Thomas M. Rollins (03/2009) Chief Counsel, Senate Committee on Labor and Human Resources
Thomas M. Rollins (04/2009) Chief Counsel, Senate Committee on Labor and Human Resources
Thomas M. Rollins (05/12/2009) Chief Counsel, Senate Committee on Labor and Human Resources
Thomas M. Rollins (05/14/2009) Chief Counsel, Senate Committee on Labor and Human Resources
Warren Rudman New Hampshire Senator
Mona Sarfaty (not yet released) Associate Director for Health Policy, HELP Committee, US Senate
Patti B. Saris Chief Justice, US District Court for Massachusetts; Staffer for Edward Kennedy, Senate Judiciary Committee
James Ralph Sasser Tennessee Senator
Arthur Schlesinger Jr. (not yet released) Democratic party activist and speechwriter and Special Assistant to the President for Latin America to President Kennedy
Mark Schneider (2/2/2009) Peace Corp Director; Kennedy Staffer
Mark Schneider (2/04/2009) Peace Corp Director; Kennedy Staffer
Elizabeth Shannon Wife of US Ambassador to Ireland William V. Shannon; family friend
Stuart Shapiro (04/2009) Senior Staff Member of the U.S. Senate Sub-Committee on Health and Scientific Research; Massachusetts Deputy Health Commissioner; President, Pennsylvania Health Care Association
Stuart Shapiro (05/2009) Senior Staff Member of the U.S. Senate Sub-Committee on Health and Scientific Research; Massachusetts Deputy Health Commissioner; President, Pennsylvania Health Care Association
Robert Shriver III and Maria Shriver Niece and Nephew (also Godson) of Edward Kennedy
Robert Shrum (7/6/2009) (not yet released) Speechwriter and political consultant in eight presidential elections and to Senator Kennedy
Robert Shrum (7/7/2009) (not yet released) Speechwriter and political consultant in eight presidential elections and to Senator Kennedy
John Siegenthaler (not yet released) Aide and friend to Attorney General Robert Kennedy, publisher of The Tennessean
Alan Simpson Wyoming Senator
Marshall (Mike) Smith (not yet released) Deputy Secretary of Education during Clinton Administration
Nancy Soderberg Foreign policy adviser to Senator Kennedy
Theodore C. Sorensen (2005) Family friend; advisor
Theodore C. Sorensen (2006) Family friend; advisor
Barbara Souliotis (2005) Director of Edward M. Kennedy’s Boston office
Barbara Souliotis (2009) Director of Edward M. Kennedy’s Boston office
Margaret Spellings Secretary of Education under President George W. Bush
A. Clayton Spencer (not yet released) Chief education counsel to the U.S. Senate Committee on Labor and Human Resources
Anne Strauss Staff Director, Senate National Science Foundation Subcommittee; Legislative Correspondent to Senator Kennedy
Thomas Susman Staffer for Edward Kennedy
David Sutphen Staffer for Edward Kennedy
William Taylor (01/2007) Civil Rights Attorney; General Counsel, US Commission on Civil Rights
William Taylor (02/2007) Civil Rights Attorney; General Counsel, US Commission on Civil Rights
Betty Taymor Family friend; Massachusetts politics
Charles Tretter Campaign aide
Laurence H. Tribe Attorney; Professor of Constitutional Law, Harvard Law School
John Tunney (2007) Senator, California
John Tunney (2009) Senator, California; friend
Archbishop Desmond Tutu Archbishop, Nobel Peace Prize winner
Trina Vargo Foreign Policy Adviser to Edward Kennedy; Founder of US-Ireland Alliance
Galina Veremkroit (formally Nizhnikov) Soviet Refusenik
John W. Warner (not yet released) United States Senator, Virginia
Henry Waxman (not yet released) U.S. Congressman, California
Sharon Waxman (2008) Senior national security advisor to Senator Kennedy
Sharon Waxman (2009) Senior national security advisor to Senator Kennedy
Ronald Weich Staffer for Edward Kennedy
Lowell P. Weicker, Jr. Senator, Connecticut; Governor, Connecticut
Burt V. Wides (not yet released) Chief Counsel to Senator Kennedy on national security issues, Secretary of Defense during Kennedy Administration
Angela Williams (not yet released) Special Counsel on criminal law to Senator Kennedy
James Sterling Young Professor of Government, University of Virginia