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FAU Celebrates Donation of First Amendment Sculpture at Constitution Day Symposium

BOCA RATON, Fla. (October 2, 2013) – Florida Atlantic University recently celebrated Constitution Day with the inaugural Robert J. Bailyn Symposium on the First Amendment and the Unveiling of the “Five Pillars of Freedom,” a sculpture inspired by the First Amendment.

Robert Bailyn, former newspaper editor and current FAU distinguished visiting professor journalism, funded both the symposium and the sculpture. Bailyn worked at the Palm Beach Post from 1979-81 after 40 years of working at newspapers along the east coast from Boston to South Florida. He also taught at the University of Alabama, Penn State and other higher education institutions. In addition to donating funds for the First Amendment Sculpture and establishing the new symposium, Bailyn and his wife also established the “Robert J. and Inez Persson Bailyn Endowment” which supports student scholarships, faculty research and study-abroad opportunities.

“Bob’s strong belief in the five freedoms protected by the 1st Amendment is an inspiration to his colleagues in the journalism program as they confront the changes in the field brought about by the Internet,” says Susan Reilly, professor of Communication and Multimedia Studies.

Panelists in the First Amendment symposium included Kevin Wagner, FAU professor of political science; Randy Shultz, editorial page editor of the Palm Beach Post; Craig Agranoff, noted national social engagement consultant and CBS contributor on social media and politics; and Katy Sorenson, president and CEO of The Good Government Initiative at the University of Miami. The panel was moderated by Susan Reilly. Panelists and the audience participated in a lively discussion about the First Amendment in today’s modern society.


About Florida Atlantic University:
Florida Atlantic University, established in 1961, officially opened its doors in 1964 as the fifth public university in Florida. Today, the University, with an annual economic impact of $6.3 billion, serves more than 30,000 undergraduate and graduate students at sites throughout its six-county service region in southeast Florida. FAU’s world-class teaching and research faculty serves students through 10 colleges: the Dorothy F. Schmidt College of Arts and Letters, the College of Business, the College for Design and Social Inquiry, the College of Education, the College of Engineering and Computer Science, the Graduate College, the Harriet L. Wilkes Honors College, the Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine, the Christine E. Lynn College of Nursing and the Charles E. Schmidt College of Science. FAU is ranked as a High Research Activity institution by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. The University is placing special focus on the rapid development of three signature themes – marine and coastal issues, biotechnology and contemporary societal challenges – which provide opportunities for faculty and students to build upon FAU’s existing strengths in research and scholarship. For more information, visit

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