University of Pittsburgh
February 28, 2011

Pitt’s American Experience Distinguished Lecture to Present Dallas Morning News Bureau Chief on Mexico’s Accelerating Violence

Alfredo Corchado will give account of the bloodiest period since the 1910 revolution
Contact:  412-624-4147

PITTSBURGH—Alfredo Corchado, Mexico bureau chief for the Dallas Morning News, will be the featured speaker for the University of Pittsburgh American Experience Distinguished Lecture Series of the Dick Thornburgh Forum for Law and Public Policy and the University Honors College at 8 p.m. March 16 in the Twentieth Century Club, 4201 Bigelow Blvd., Oakland. 

The lecture is titled “Midnight in Mexico: Descent Into Darkness” and gives Corchado’s personal account of Mexico’s accelerating violence and a search for hope from both sides of the border amid the bloodiest period since the 1910 Mexican revolution. 

The event, which is cosponsored by the Matthew B. Ridgway Center for International Security Studies, is free and open to the public but seating is limited. Anyone interested in attending must RSVP with name, phone number, and name/s of additional attendees by visiting the American Experience Web site at For more information on the lecture series, call 412-624-1514. 

Corchado was born in Durango, Mexico, and grew up in California and Texas. A 1987 graduate of the University of Texas at El Paso and a 2009 Nieman Fellow at Harvard University, Corchado has worked for the Dallas Morning News since 1994. As Mexico bureau chief, he covers U.S. policy in Latin America, specializing in Mexico, and is a leading reporter on the drug-related violence that continues to dominate the border region and threaten Mexico’s national security. 

Corchado also has worked for the Dallas Morning News in Cuba and Washington, D.C. Before joining the newspaper, Corchado worked at KXCR, an NPR affiliate in El Paso; the Ogden Standard-Examiner in Utah; El Paso Herald-Post; and The Wall Street Journal

His reporting in Mexico and along the U.S.-Mexico border has earned him several awards, including The Maria Moors Cabot Award presented by Columbia University and the Elijah Parish Lovejoy Prize presented by Colby College in Waterville, Maine. He also was a finalist for the Center for Public Integrity in Washington for his reporting on Mexico’s vast impunity, which included the deaths of women of Juarez and the rise of a Mexican paramilitary group known as the Zetas. 

Corchado served as a 2010 scholar at The Woodrow Wilson Center in Washington and is a current fellow at the David Rockefeller Center at Harvard. Based in Mexico City, Corchado calls the border home. He is at work on his first book, Midnight in Mexico. 

Discussion moderators will include Pitt alumnus and trustee Dick Thornburgh (LAW ’57), former governor of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, attorney general of the United States, U.N. undersecretary general, and now counsel to the international law firm K&L Gates in its Washington, D.C., office; Phil Williams, director of the Matthew B. Ridgway Center for International Security Studies; Cindy Skrzycki, senior lecturer in Pitt’s Department of English and business correspondent for; and David Shribman, executive editor of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Late Pitt faculty member Robert G. Hazo created the American Experience program 40 years ago to offer Pittsburgh’s mid-to-high-level managers the opportunity to gain insight into political and economic thought with the intent of enlightening the public’s political discourse. The program’s current director is Edward L. McCord, director of programming and special projects in Pitt’s Honors College and director of the Dick Thornburgh Forum for Law and Public Policy. The series focuses on political and economic issues and has featured addresses by such internationally renowned speakers as Pat Buchanan, Paul R. Ehrlich, Teresa Heinz Kerry, Bruce Babbitt, and the late John Kenneth Galbraith.