As a legislator for four decades, he led voter registration drives and challenges to redistricting that rattled the political establishment.
He served under George Shultz at the State Department as the Soviet Union began crumbling and later, at Treasury, led a crackdown on funding for terrorism after 9/11.
Beginning in 1994, he brought to the moderator’s role credentials as a political activist, an academic and a national correspondent for NBC News.
As Havana’s go-between with the U.S., he negotiated Elián González’s return to Cuba. He was also the country’s U.N. representative on two occasions.
She was known to lob softballs in interviews, but she was tireless in getting face time with officials, including every president from Lyndon Johnson to George W. Bush.
His letter to two senators about beatings by U.S. troops in Iraq led to legislation in 2005 prohibiting extreme mistreatment of military prisoners.
He embraced what became known as Black liberation theology and, in 1972, became the first Black leader of the National Council of Churches.
A champion of environmentalism who chided climate change, he was among the last of the relatively progressive Rockefeller Republicans.
During the Cold War, she fought for the rights of others and also waged a 16-year fight of her own for an exit visa to Israel. She finally won in 1987.