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Cronkite Welcomes Visiting Scholar Pam Johnson

September 2, 2010

Pam Johnson, who led the award-winning School of Journalism & Broadcasting at Western Kentucky University for the past seven years, will spend her fall sabbatical at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication to study digital media.

As a Cronkite Visiting Scholar, Johnson will immerse herself in the world of multimedia journalism, working with Arizona State University’s New Media Innovation Lab, Knight Center for Digital Media Entrepreneurship and professors such as Leslie-Jean Thornton and Retha Hill.

"The decision to come to the Cronkite School to obtain multimedia skills was an easy choice,” Johnson said. “Clearly, the school is one of the best schools in the world for successful multimedia initiatives."

Johnson, who served as the school’s director from 2003 to 2010, will return to the WKU faculty following her sabbatical. Western Kentucky offers specializations in advertising, broadcasting, film, mass communication, photojournalism, print journalism and public relations.

Johnson teaches media management, gender issues and reporting and directs the Dow Jones News Fund Multimedia Workshop for university students and a DJNF Multimedia Workshop for faculty from historically black colleges and universities.

Before her career in journalism education, Johnson was president and publisher of the Ithaca Journal newspaper in New York – the first African-American woman to serve as publisher of a general circulation newspaper.

Johnson served on the Nieman Fellows Selection Committee at Harvard University in 1993 and has served three times as a Pulitzer Prize juror.

“We’re just thrilled Pam is going to be with us this fall,” said Dean Christopher Callahan, who serves on the 11-member Hearst Journalism Awards Steering Committee with Johnson. “She’s been a great leader in journalism education, and it will be wonderful to exchange ideas about journalism and the future of journalism education.”