Hiram College

On Tuesday, April 22, 2008, the Garfield Institute for Public Leadership will present its spring seminar. Keynote speaker Geneva Overholser, a journalism professor at the School of Journalism at the University of Missouri, will examine issues faced by today’s media.

Overholser’s talk raises tough questions for contemporary journalism. Does the contemporary news media profession contribute to the quality of our democracy? Does it encourage us to become better informed, more sober, and responsible? Does the news media foster more hysterical, shallow, impatient, ideological mindsets? What are journalistic moral, ethical, and educational responsibilities?

Overholser, Professor of Journalism Studies, Curtis B. Hurley Chair in Public Affairs Reporting, Missouri School of Journalism, is former editor of the Des Moines Register, which won a Pulitzer Prize for Public Service under her direction. She wrote national-security editorials for The New York Times and served as ombudsman for The Washington Post. She spent five years overseas, freelancing from Kinshasa of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and Paris. A former Nieman fellow, she chaired the Pulitzer Prize Board and was an officer of the American Society of Newspaper Editors. She is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and of the Society of Professional Journalists, and serves on the boards of the Committee of Concerned Journalists, the Knight Fellowships at Stanford and the American Academy of Poets. She chairs the board of the Center for Public Integrity, a nonprofit investigative journalism organization in Washington.

Panelists will include Jason Johnson, assistant professor of political science and communication, Hiram College; Gerald Austin, president, Gerald J. Austin & Associates, Inc.; Elizabeth Sullivan, associate editor and columnist, the Cleveland Plain Dealer; and Stephen Brooks, associate director, the Ray C. Bliss Institute of Applied Politics, and associate professor of political science, University of Akron.

Schedule of events:
4:15 p.m. – 6:15 p.m. Panel discussion, Kennedy Center Ballroom
6:30 p.m. – 7:15 p.m. Reception, Kennedy Center
7:15 p.m. – 9 p.m. Dinner and keynote address, Kennedy Center, Dix Dining Hall

Register by April 17 to Kathy Luschek, luschekk@hiram.edu or 330.569.6118. The Garfield Institute is one of six Centers of Excellence in which teaching and learning occur collaboratively, capitalizing on Hiram College’s longstanding strength of applying interdisciplinary approaches to complex, multi-faceted questions that do not lend themselves to straightforward solutions.