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Goodwin Off Pulitzer Board

Historian Doris Kearns Goodwin, who has faced accusations of plagiarism over a 1987 book, has resigned from the Pulitzer Prize board, Columbia University announced Friday.

In a letter to board president John Carroll, Goodwin said that "after the controversy earlier this year surrounding my book, `The Fitzgeralds and the Kennedys,' and the need now to concentrate on my Lincoln manuscript, I will not be able to give the board the kind of attention it deserves."

Goodwin, who joined the board in 1999, herself won a Pulitzer for her 1995 book "No Ordinary Time: Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt: The Home Front in World War II."

In January, as journalists probed the biographies and works of several high-profile historians, Goodwin acknowledged that "The Fitzgeralds and the Kennedys" contained sections of text taken without attribution from another author.

Lynne McTaggart told reporters that Goodwin's work contained "dozens and dozens" of passages from McTaggart's 1983 biography of Kathleen Kennedy.

Goodwin said the copying was accidental, the result of a longhand note-taking system that didn't distinguish between her own observations and passages from other texts.

Both she and McTaggart said they had reached a settlement years earlier that included an undisclosed payment and revisions to Goodwin's book.

Since her admission, Goodwin took a leave from PBS' "Newshour with Jim Lehrer," where she had been making regular appearances, and some universities rescinded speaking invitations.

As the controversy grew, Goodwin withdrew from this year's Pulitzer Prize judging in April.

In accepting the resignation, Carroll, editor of the Los Angeles Times, said, "We have valued you as a colleague and appreciate your contributions over the past three years."

The Pulitzers, American journalism's most prestigious prizes, are administered by Columbia University.