Corporation for Public Broadcasting Editorial Integrity and Leadership Initiative

The Editorial Integrity and Leadership Initiative is training 100 journalists over a two-year period, bringing public media’s most promising newsroom leaders to the Arizona State University’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication. Participants work in small cohorts and receive one week of intensive learning and discussions, followed by three months of one-on-one coaching and online sessions. The initiative is funded by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, a private nonprofit corporation that supports the operations of more than 1,500 locally owned and operated public television and radio stations nationwide.

Program Dates

Program Structure
First Session
Second Session
New and Emerging Leaders
Jan. 12-17, 2020
April 26-27, 2020
Advanced Leaders
April 26-May 1, 2020
Aug. 16-17, 2020
Advanced Leaders
Aug. 16-21, 2020
Dec. 6-7, 2020

Find out more about the fellows and coaches

Fellows spent a week in Phoenix learning from the best at the Cronkite School and public media. Here were some of the April 2019 sessions.

The Role of Journalism in our Democracy
Judy Woodruff, anchor and managing editor, PBS Newshour

Change Isn’t A Curse Word: How to Lead Positive Transformation in (Bleeping) Difficult Times
Mi-Ai Parrish, Sue Clark-Johnson Professor in Media Innovation and Leadership, Cronkite School

Creating a Clearly Defined, Value-Laden Purpose to Drive Your Organization Forward and Set Goals
Christopher Callahan, dean, Cronkite School

Leadership in Diversity: How You Can Make it Happen
Keith Woods, VP of newsroom training and diversity, NPR

Dealing With Ethics and Credibility Issues
Mark Memmott, standards and practices editor, NPR
Brian Westley, senior counsel, Standards and Practices, PBS
Morgan Holm, chief content officer, Oregon Public Broadcasting

Taking the Scenic Route: Turning Radio into Podcasts
Robert Smith, host of Planet Money

The Boston Priest Scandal Investigation: From Prize-Winning Work to Oscar-Winning Movie
Walter Robinson, Edith Kinney Gaylord Visiting Professor in Investigative Journalism, Cronkite School
Sacha Pfeiffer, investigative editor, NPR

Driving Innovation Without Running off the Road
Andrew Heyward, former CBS News president, now Senior Research Professor for TV News, Cronkite School

Making Collaboration Work: What it Takes to be Successful
Alisa Barba, national desk editor, NPR
Bruce Auster, senior director collaborative journalism, NPR

Connect with Us

Morgan Bircher, program manager

The program’s value

Fellows describe why this program is so critical to their future and the future of public media.

I’ve described this program to some of my colleagues as life-changing, or more specifically, career-changing. I’ve never had the luxury of spending an entire week with other public media newsroom leaders from across the country, immersed in leadership/ethics training. I returned from that week rejuvenated and with renewed excitement about the future of my newsroom and public media overall.

—Laura McCallum, managing editor, daily news, Minnesota Public Radio

In my thirty-plus years in broadcast journalism, I have had the opportunity to attend a number of training programs. I would rate the Editorial Integrity and Leadership Initiative at the top of that list because it addresses current needs, provides expert coaching, creates a very practical and focused plan to set goals and accomplish them, and focuses beyond the short-term to look at a sustainable long-term strategy for consistent and constant improvement.

—Dennis Kellogg, news director, NET (Nebraska PBS & NPR Stations)

The most significant change in my mindset about my leadership in the newsroom is that my job is not to manage tasks, fix other’s mistakes and clean up stories after reporters, but rather to train, lead and coach my reporters and staff so they can excel and do their best work.

—Vince Duffy, news director, Michigan radio

This is a complicated time to be a journalist and that makes it an especially difficult time to be a newsroom leader. This training is giving me new tools and a new foundation for confronting these challenges in constructive and creative ways that will ultimately help me build a stronger newsroom. And it’s giving me a new sense of purpose for my own organization and for public media as a whole.

—Annie Fiedt, managing editor, Alaska Energy Desk


Jeff Cohen, news director, WNPR

Kyla Calvert Mason, assistant news director, Wisconsin Public Radio

Zuri Berry, senior managing editor, WAMU 88.5

Selected Sessions

When America Loved the Press

When America Loved the Press

The Role of Journalism in our Democracy

The Role of Journalism in our Democracy

Corporation for Public Broadcasting Editorial Integrity and Leadership Initiative Overview

The Corporation for Public Broadcasting Editorial Integrity and Leadership Initiative strengthens public media journalism by building the expertise of 100 editors managing complex editorial collaborations and growing newsrooms.

At the Cronkite School, the faculty and coaches will design a customized curriculum of onsite and virtual training, supported by ongoing mentoring and coaching. Topics will include editorial integrity, strategic frameworks and partnerships, multi-platform editing, data reporting, audience-first engagement as well as metrics. The program is led by Julia Wallace, the Cronkite School’s Frank Russell Chair in the business of journalism and former editor-in-chief of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

Arizona State University