Ike's Mystery Man: Robert Cutler

From 1953-1955 and 1957-1958, Robert Cutler served as President Eisenhower’s National Security Advisor, helping to shape U.S. security policy at the height of the Cold War.

During his time in the White House, Cutler struggled to embrace his own sexual identity and orientation. His six-volume diary and more than a dozen letters reveal his love for Skip Koons, a young member of the National Security Council staff, at a time when homosexuality was considered a threat to national security.

Cutler’s story is one of public service at the highest levels of government, but also of the daily challenges and personal dramas of a small group of patriotic gay men who were forced to hide essential aspects of who they were in order to serve a president they admired and a country they loved.

This event will feature Peter Shinkle, the great-nephew of Robert Cutler and author of his new biography, in conversation with Stephen Benedict, a staffer at the Eisenhower White House who was Cutler’s friend and Koons’s friend and former lover.

A limited number of copies of Ike’s Mystery Man will be available for purchase at the event, which will be followed by a book signing.

Wednesday, May 1, 2019 at 7:00pm to 8:00pm

College Union 260

Event Type

Lectures & Presentations

Target Audience


Political Science Department, Public Policy Department, Eisenhower Institute
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