Poynter Dean of Faculty Stephen Buckley will leave the Institute in June to move to Zambia, where he will work for the nongovernmental organization Family Legacy developing a new youth leadership center.
Poynter President Tim Franklin said Buckley will be sorely missed for his leadership of the faculty.
“Since I arrived at Poynter a little more than two months ago, Stephen has been a trusted adviser and confidant,” said Franklin. “I’ll always be grateful for his guidance, good ideas and friendship during my transition to Poynter.”
Buckley joined Poynter in 2010 from Times Publishing, where he served as digital publisher of tampabay.com, the website of the St. Petersburg Times, later the Tampa Bay Times. He also serves on the board of directors of Times Publishing.
“Stephen has served these enterprises in just about every capacity: reporter, editor, business executive and educator,” said Paul Tash, chairman of Poynter and the Times. “His departure is a loss not just to us but to journalism. He goes with our gratitude and good wishes, and he will make a huge mark in this new chapter of work.”
Prior to joining the Times, Buckley worked for 12 years as a Washington Post reporter, first as a metro writer and then as a foreign correspondent. He served as the paper’s Africa bureau chief, based in Nairobi, and then as Brazil bureau chief in Rio de Janeiro.
He won the InterAction International Reporting Prize awarded by a coalition of nongovernmental organizations and the National Association of Black Journalists’ International Prize for coverage of the Black Condition, along with Post photographer Carol Guzy. In 2002, he received the Paul Hansell Distinguished Journalism Award from the Florida Society of Newspaper Editors for work he produced at the Times.
“This move isn’t so much about my leaving the institute as it is about my chasing a wonderful opportunity,” Buckley wrote in a note to Poynter’s staff and faculty. “The chance to build a leadership development institute for young people in one of the world’s neediest nations was simply too enticing.”
“Poynter is in my blood,” he said. “So it goes without saying that I’ll carry in my heart the myriad lessons this place has taught me about life and journalism.”
No immediate decision has been made on Poynter’s dean position, Franklin said.
Family Legacy Missions International is a Texas-based NGO that provides quality education and family connections to orphans in Zambia.