The History of Poynter’s Leadership Academy for Women in Media

The Leadership Academy for Women in (Digital) Media was founded in 2015 in partnership with ONA. The joint program became overwhelmingly popular with hundreds of applicants for just 28 spots, so ONA branched off in 2017 to host a sister program and serve more women in the industry. In 2018, Poynter continued to serve the need for formal leadership training by expanding to three academies each year.

ONA and Poynter continue to work together to offer transformative training to diverse women in the news, digital media and tech spaces. As partners, we share best practices and swap ideas, collaborate on application timelines, and coordinate during the selection process to ensure there’s no overlap in accepted applicants.

More than 400 women have graduated from Poynter’s  leadership program alone; many volunteer as mentors on Digital Women Leaders, which is owned and operated by program co-founder Katie Hawkins-Gaar. Meet some past participants and instructors from the Poynter program below.

Past Poynter participants:

Past Poynter instructors:

Masuma Ahuja

Yasmeen Alamiri

Marcia Allert

Sarah Alvarez

Kainaz Amaria

Kari Anderson

Belén Arce Terceros

Beth Ashton

Leslie Bailey

Moni Basu

Elizabeth Baugh

Melissa Bell

Bridget Bodnar

Jennifer Brandel

Sarah Bugden

LaSharah Bunting

Tayla Burney

Emma Carew Grovum

Cheryl Carpenter

Rebecca Catalanello

Kari Cobham

Lisa Creamer

Caitlin Curran

Nicole Cvetnic

Natalie Delgadillo

Kat Downs Mulder

Heather Doyle

Kara Edgerson

Diana Elbasha

Jennifer Emily

Meghann Farnsworth

Lena Felton

Dr. Michelle Ferrier

Candice Fortman

Jessica Garcia

Dhiya Gerber

Katie Glaeser

Emily Goldstein

Tracy Grant

Mel Grau

Adrienne Green

Megan Greenwell

Megan Griffith-Greene

Kristen Hare

Kat Hayes