Poynter’s New Class of National Advisory Board Members Includes Prominent National Broadcaster, Pulitzer Winner, News Executives and Academic Thought Leaders

Institute’s advisers now will include CBS News’ “Face the Nation” host John Dickerson, CNN Digital Vice President Mitra Kalita, Washington Post Pulitzer-winning Reporter Wesley Lowery, Arizona Republic Publisher Mi-Ai Parrish, San Francisco Chronicle Editor Audrey Cooper and Educator Jon Funabiki.

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (Dec. 6, 2016) – The Poynter Institute, the global leader in journalism, announced today the addition of six members to serve on its National Advisory Board (NAB). The new board members bring a breadth of expertise as media executives, broadcasting leaders, digital experts and award-winning journalists.

“Each of our new board members brings unique insight and knowledge to the Institute,” said Poynter President Tim Franklin. “They will be invaluable partners for Poynter as we work to elevate journalism and the people it serves.”

“These additions to our National Advisory Board enhance Poynter’s mission to advance journalism in an age of profound change,” Franklin said. “Poynter will benefit greatly from having their voices and experience on the advisory board.”

The newly-named board members, whose terms begin in January 2017, are:

Audrey Cooper, Editor in Chief, San Francisco Chronicle
Audrey Cooper is the editor in chief of the San Francisco Chronicle, the first woman to fill the role in the company’s 151-year history. She is also the youngest woman ever named as the top editor of a major U.S newspaper-based company. Under her leadership, the Chronicle has emerged as one of the country’s most innovative newspaper-based media outlets. Among other things, she started an in-house incubator project to transform the newsroom into a digitally focused operation that has successfully forged new storytelling techniques. She has also prioritized investigative journalism. Her newsroom exposed the numerous safety failures that lead to the 2011 San Bruno gas explosion and continues to uncover new details about the mismanaged reconstruction of the Bay Bridge. The Chronicle also has been a rare critical voice in exploring the benefits and costs of the region’s most recent tech boom. A native of the Kansas City area, Audrey graduated magna cum laude from Boston University with separate degrees in journalism and political science.

John Dickerson, Host, Face the Nation, Political Director, CBS News
John Dickerson is the anchor of CBS News’ “Face The Nation,” the No. 1 Sunday morning public affairs program. He also serves as political director for CBS News and is a contributor to Slate magazine and its podcast “The Political Gabfest.” Dickerson joined CBS News in April 2009 as an analyst and contributor, providing on-air political analysis and contributing to CBS News broadcasts across the network. He was named political director in November 2011. He is the author of two long-form series for Slate. The most recent is on presidential attributes, which won the Gerald R. Ford Prize for Distinguished Reporting on the Presidency. Previously, he wrote an in-depth series of articles about risk in which he profiled musicians, rock climbers, a Silicon Valley start-up and Commander of United States Central Command James Mattis. Dickerson has been a reporter in Washington for almost 20 years, covering the White House, Congress and economics. Before joining Slate in 2005, Dickerson covered politics for 12 years for Time magazine. He has covered presidential campaigns since 1996 and hosts a twice-monthly podcast, “Whistlestop,” which chronicles great moments in presidential campaign history. A native Washingtonian, he graduated with distinction from the University of Virginia with a bachelor’s degree in English and a specialty in American Studies. His mother, Nancy Dickerson, was CBS News’ first female correspondent. Dickerson is the author of “On Her Trail,” a book about his mother.

Jon Funabiki, Professor of Journalism and Executive Director, Renaissance Journalism, San Francisco State University
Jon Funabiki, whose career spans journalism, philanthropy and academia, is a professor of journalism at San Francisco State University, and he is the founding director of Renaissance Journalism, a nonprofit that organizes collaborative news projects on social justice issues. He joined the university after an 11-year career with the Ford Foundation, one of the world’s leading philanthropies. As the deputy director of the Media, Arts and Culture Unit in New York, he led grant programs to promote ethics, credibility and diversity in journalism; social justice journalism; and the ethnic and independent news media. Funabiki is the former founding director of San Francisco State University’s Center for Integration and Improvement of Journalism and a former journalist with The San Diego Union, where he specialized in U.S.-Asia political and economic affairs. A graduate of San Francisco State University, Funabiki was awarded the John S. Knight Professional Journalism Fellowship at Stanford University; the Jefferson Fellowship at the East-West Center of Honolulu; and a National Endowment for the Humanities Professional Summer Fellowship at the University of California, Santa Barbara. He recently completed a five-year term as the founding executive director of San Francisco State’s Dilena Takeyama Center for the Study of Japan and Japanese Culture.

S. Mitra Kalita, Vice President for Programming, CNN Digital
S. Mitra Kalita is the vice president for programming at CNN Digital. She was previously managing editor for editorial strategy at the Los Angeles Times. During her year there, she helped latimes.com traffic soar to nearly 60 million uniques monthly, innovated new forms of storytelling and audience engagement and connected the Times to new communities via events, new beats, translations and partnerships. She served as the executive editor (at large) for Quartz, Atlantic Media’s global economy site, and was its founding ideas editor. She also oversaw the launches of Quartz India and Quartz Africa. She worked previously at The Wall Street Journal, where she directed coverage of the Great Recession, launched a local news section for New York City and reported on the housing crisis as a senior writer. She was a founding editor of Mint, a business paper in New Delhi, and has previously worked for The Washington Post, Newsday and the Associated Press. She is the author of three books related to migration and globalization, including the highly acclaimed “Suburban Sahibs.” She has taught journalism at St. John’s, University of Massachusetts Amherst and Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism, and previously served as president of the South Asian Journalists Association.

Wesley Lowery, Reporter, The Washington Post
Wesley Lowery is a national reporter who covers law enforcement, justice, race and politics. He was the paper’s lead reporter in Ferguson, Missouri, and covered the Black Lives Matter protest movement. He was a member of the team at The Washington Post awarded the 2016 Pulitzer Prize for National Reporting for the paper’s coverage of police shootings. He previously covered Congress and national politics. Prior to joining the Post, he worked as a breaking news and local politics reporter for the Boston Globe, and has also reported for the Los Angeles Times and The Wall Street Journal. In 2014, he was named the National Association of Black Journalists’ “Emerging Journalist of the Year.”

Mi-Ai Parrish, President and Publisher, The Arizona Republic
Mi-Ai Parrish is responsible for leading strategic vision at Republic Media, the largest local media operation of the USA Today Network. America’s largest local news company, the network reaches more than 110 million unique visitors a month through digital operations. Before joining Republic Media, Parrish was president and publisher of The Kansas City Star Media Company for four years. She was the first woman and first person of color to hold that position. She served as president and publisher of Idaho’s largest media company for five years before that. Prior to becoming a president, Parrish was an editor and reporter in newsrooms including the San Francisco Chronicle, Chicago Sun-Times, (Minneapolis) Star Tribune, Arizona Republic and The Virginian-Pilot. Parrish is a two-time Pulitzer Prize juror, longtime member of the Asian American Journalists Association and was named one of the 100 Most Important Minority Journalists of the last century. She’s a journalism graduate of the University of Maryland, which named her a Distinguished Alumna.

Poynter’s outgoing National Advisory Board members are Jim Brady, CEO of Spirited Media and public editor, ESPN; Chris Callahan, founding dean of the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University; Monica Davey, Chicago bureau chief of The New York Times; Lou Ferrara, chief content officer, Bankrate.com; Hugh Forrest, director of the South by Southwest Interactive (SXSW) Interactive Festival; and Ju-Don Marshall Roberts, digital media strategist and startup adviser.

About The Poynter Institute
The Poynter Institute for Media Studies is a global leader in journalism education and a strategy center that stands for uncompromising excellence in journalism, media and 21st century public discourse. Poynter faculty teach seminars and workshops at the Institute in St. Petersburg, Fla., and at conferences and organizational sites around the world. Its e-learning division, News University, www.newsu.org, offers the world’s largest online journalism curriculum in 7 languages, with more than 400 interactive courses and 330,000 registered users in more than 200 countries. The Institute’s website, www.poynter.org, produces 24-hour coverage of news about media, ethics, technology, the business of news and the trends that currently define and redefine journalism news reporting. The world’s top journalists and media innovators come to Poynter to learn and teach new generations of reporters, storytellers, media inventors, designers, visual journalists, documentarians and broadcast producers, and to build public awareness about journalism, media, the First Amendment and protected discourse that serves democracy and the public good.

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