Three Alum Authors Return – Hobart and William Smith Colleges \
The HWS Update

Three Alum Authors Return

On Saturday, June 4, alumni authors Dan F. Connell III ’65, Paul Lee Johnson ’71, P’08 and Matt Bindig ’98 will sign copies of their books, between 2 and 4 p.m. at The College Store.

Connell is the author of 10 books focusing on despotism, politics and human rights in Eritrea. Captivated by the struggle for liberation and democracy in African countries, he traveled to the continent in the mid-1970s to explore ongoing social and political conflicts. His firsthand account of his time in the Eritrea’s besieged capital city appeared on the front page of The Washington Post, and served as the basis for his first book “Against All Odds: A Chronicle of the Eritrean Revolution.”

After graduating from Hobart, Connell earned his master’s degree in literature from the University of Buffalo. Now a visiting researcher at Boston University’s African Studies Center, he has contributed to publications on foreign policy, immigration and development, including The Nation, The Guardian, Foreign Policy in Focus and The Middle East Report.

Featuring a new afterword, “Against All Odds” will be available, as well as “Rethinking Revolution,” “Taking on the Superpowers,” “Building a New Nation” and “Conversations with Eritrean Political Prisoners.”

A historian and featured speaker at the annual Tombstone Territory Rendezvous, Johnson earned recognition from the Wild West History Association for his first book, “The McLaurys in Tombstone, Arizona; An O.K. Corral Obituary.” The acclaimed biography explores the McLaury family and provides much missing information on the 1881 gunfight from the viewpoint of the McLaurys.

Johnson, who studied music at HWS, serves as director of the Nightwatch program at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine and pastoral musician at All Angels’ Episcopal Church in Manhattan.

Set in the fictional upstate town of Apollo, N.Y., Bindig’s debut novel, “Nothing Here is Real,” explores the power of family myths and the costs that come with striking out on your own.

After earning a B.A. in English cum laude from Hobart, Bindig went on to complete a master’s in education at Harvard University in 2001. Born and raised in Buffalo, N.Y., he returned home to teach English at Orchard Park High School. As a member of a college consulting team, he also mentors students as they write their college essays. In 2015, he became the first Hobart alumnus to receive the “Touching the Future Award,” having been nominated by Amanda Reusch ’15, after inspiring her to apply to William Smith while a student at Orchard Park.