2017 Inductee Videos
Hall of Achievement Member Bios
Please note: Content of biographies is presented here as published in the year members were inducted.
When Eric Allen Jr. started his career as a newspaper journalist and editor in Oregon, he had some impressive boots to fill. His father, Eric W. Allen, had founded the SOJC at the University of Oregon and served as its first dean for 30 years. But after a distinguished 44-year career, the younger Allen more than earned his own title as “Dean of Oregon Editors.”
Allen was born in Eugene, Oregon, on September 14, 1920, to a family that was steeped in the written word. In addition to his father’s legacy as a journalist and educator, his mother, Sally Allen, was a nationally renowned poet, novelist, and playwright.
Allen attended university classes before withdrawing to serve in World War II. Upon his return from the war, he held jobs at newspapers in Oregon and California before working as the United Press International bureau chief in Fresno, California, and Salem, Oregon.
In Fresno, he met and married artist Betty Magee, who later co-founded Medford’s Rogue Gallery & Art Center. They were married until Betty’s death in 1962.
In 1944, Allen left journalism to serve as private secretary to governors Earl Snell and John Hall. When Snell died in a plane crash in 1948, Allen returned to his lifelong calling, taking a job as the first city editor of the Medford Mail Tribune.
From the 1950s through the 1980s, Allen wrote an average of 12–16 editorials a week—signed only with the initials E.A.—advocating for civil liberties, gun control, and environmental conservation. He was also active in civic affairs in southern Oregon, where he earned a reputation as a progressive liberal in a conservative corner of the state. In addition, Allen was a co-founding trustee and treasurer of Mercy Flights Inc.
Allen moved up through the ranks at the Mail Tribune, becoming managing editor in 1956 and editor in 1964. Although he was quick to point out poor grammar and inaccuracies, he was considered a fair boss who doled out praise and criticism in equal measure.
In 1976, Allen accepted the Voorhies Award for his editorials opposing a short-lived law preventing access. He also served as a Pulitzer Prize judge on three occasions.
At times, Allen’s work was met with backlash, and he even received death threats in response to his handgun control editorials. His peers, however, recognized him as an impressive and influential editor. Mail Tribune publishers Gil Bogley and Stephen Ryder said he held “the highest standards of editorial integrity and quality” and did the paper a great justice through his work.
In 1985, at age 65, Allen retired from the Mail Tribune and was inducted into the Oregon Newspaper Hall of Fame. He passed away one year later, on Christmas Day.
Story by Becky Hoag, journalism and marine biology double major
Lauren Kessler has always had two careers—one as a writer and the other as a teacher. While she was leading programs and instructing journalism students at the SOJC for more than 30 years, she was also the prolific author of 15 books, 9 of them works of literary nonfiction.
Part reporter, part cultural anthropologist, and part historian, Kessler’s approach to writing is to thoroughly immerse herself in her subject, through deep research and reporting or by becoming an active participant in the story she is telling.
The focus of her work has ranged from describing the complex world of ballet in Raising the Barre—which she learned about while training, auditioning for, and performing in The Nutcracker with the Eugene Ballet Company—to revealing the inner worlds of those with Alzheimer’s in Finding Life in the Land of Alzheimer’s, which she researched by getting a job as a caregiver in an assisted living facility. She has used experiences in her own life to explore deeper themes, such as the fundamental mother-daughter relationship illuminated in My Teenage Werewolf. And she has examined the lives of those who are very different from her in works such as Stubborn Twig, her three-generation portrait of a Japanese American family—the first book selected by the Oregon Library Association for all Oregonians to read for the Oregon Reads campaign.
During her impressive literary career, Kessler’s work has won two Oregon Book Awards, the Pacific Northwest Book Award, the New England Book Show award, and BookSense, Wall Street Journal, and People magazine “Best” selections. Her book The Happy Bottom Riding Club was the first and only selection of the David Letterman Book Club.
While living the life of an author, Kessler—now an SOJC professor emerita—also led a distinguished academic career in the school spanning three decades. She created two SOJC master’s programs, in literary nonfiction and multimedia journalism, and spearheaded such innovative programs as a writing initiative, the TransAtlantic Storytelling Workshop, and the WordsWorth program. Kessler is a recipient of the UO Faculty Excellence Award and the UO Excellence in Scholarship and Teaching Award, and she was selected as one of the top 50 journalism instructors in the nation. In 2015, she was inducted into the Hall of Fame of the University of Washington’s School of Communication, where she earned her PhD.
Kessler has inspired students, peers, and readers throughout her career. Today she teaches storytelling and immersion reportage at the University of Washington, directs the Literature and Ethics Project at the Oregon State Penitentiary, runs writers workshops in the United States and abroad, and is working on her next book.
Story by Aaron Nelson, BA ’17
Creativity has always been Tracy Wong’s driving force.
It all started at the SOJC. After graduating from the school’s advertising program in 1981, he went on to earn a second bachelor’s in fine arts from the ArtCenter College of Design in Pasadena, California, in 1984.
From then on, there was no stopping Wong’s meteoric rise to the top of the advertising industry. His first job out of college was art director at Ogilvy & Mather in New York City, and he became senior art director at Goodby Silverstein & Partners in San Francisco in 1989.
By 1993, Wong was ready to strike out on his own. He joined forces—and names—with Pat Doody, former brand manager at Lever Brothers, to form WONGDOODY. Wong has served as chairman and executive creative director of the independent advertising agency ever since. Over the past 24 years, the company has grown to over 100 employees and has become one of the most awarded independent advertising agencies on the West Coast, with offices in Seattle and Los Angeles.
WONGDOODY has created some of the most memorable campaigns in the business for many of the world’s biggest clients, from Amazon, T-Mobile, and ESPN to Alaska Airlines and even the U.S. Center For Disease Control. Its work has been featured in the New York Times, TIME magazine, USA Today, and the Wall Street Journal.
With more than 350 national and international awards to his credit, Wong is one of the most honored individuals in the advertising industry today. His TV campaign for Chevys Fresh Mex restaurants was inducted into the Clio Hall of Fame in 2006. He has also been named Ernst & Young’s Entrepreneur of the Year and Marketer of the Year for the American Marketing Association/Northwest, and he earned the American Advertising Federation’s Silver Medal for Lifetime Achievement. Outside the field, he is perhaps best known for his appearance on The Pitch, an AMC reality show about advertising’s real “Mad Men.”
Wong is currently working on a book titled CREATIVE DEMOCRACY, which details a path to better creative thinking in business through understanding the creative process and developing a culture of egoless collaboration.
Story by Eric Schucht, journalism major
Gayle Forman’s fans know her best as the New York Times bestselling author, the globetrotting journalist, and the witty writer with a knack for making the universal feel personal. But even Forman’s greatest admirers may be less acquainted with her early-career works.
There was, of course, that timeless yarn about a girl getting lost in her closet. And the account of a child seemingly deserted by her parents (it’s okay, they were just on vacation). And then Forman’s favorite: the epic story of a poor girl’s spontaneous combustion.
“That’s what 5-year-old Gayle wrote about,” she jokes 40 years later. “Thank God those teachers didn’t call social services.”
Despite starting young, it took some time for Forman to see a career in storytelling. Her plan as a young girl was to grow up to be the sun (“I was devastated to learn this wasn’t a career option,” she shares on her website) — and even in high school she didn’t envision that writing would ever become a job. When Forman arrived at the University of Oregon, she intended to study biology and chemistry en route to a career in medicine.
By her sophomore year, Forman was already looking for something different, signing up for classes across the university that jived more closely with her interests. After sensing a spark in her first journalism class, Forman registered for the school’s then-infamous information gathering course, lovingly known by students at the time as “Info-Hell.” It had deservedly earned a reputation as the SOJC’s weed-out class, but for Forman it proved to be a kick-start.
“That was the moment I realized, ‘Oh my God, you big idiot, of course journalism is what you want to do,’” she says. “You like to talk to people, you like to write, and you like to travel — and journalism incorporates all of those. From then on, I was full steam ahead.”
After college, Forman charged ahead as a magazine journalist with international flair, filing dispatches and features from as far afield as Pakistan and South Africa. On one of her earlier trips, an assignment from Seventeen magazine to write about girl soldiers in Sierra Leone, Forman found herself hustling alongside seasoned reporters from The New York Times and The Economist on a UNICEF press trip. She was the new kid on the block, and she knew it.
“There was something nerve-wracking about it, but also exhilarating,” she says. “I learned that stories weren’t just going to fall into my lap. I had to go get them.”
After more than a decade covering women’s issues and social justice stories around the globe — writing for the likes of Cosmopolitan, The Nation, Elle, and Jane — Forman made a mid-career pivot, trading in her jet-setting journalism schedule for an only slightly less chaotic lifestyle as a fiction writer and mother.
By any measure, the sudden switch turned into a runaway success. In 2009, Forman’s second young-adult novel, If I Stay, exploded into an international bestseller, eventually reaching the top of both The New York Times and USA Today bestseller lists. The book, a gripping tale of a 17-year-old girl’s choice between life and death following a catastrophic car accident, has sold more than 2.4 million copies worldwide and has been adapted into a Hollywood film starring Chloë Grace Moretz.
Even now, the novel’s journey seems to catch its author by surprise. When Forman sat down to write it, she was unsure if the story’s dark plot twist would suit a young-adult audience or if any publishers would bite. On her computer, she saved the first draft as “Why Not?” — as in “Why not give it a shot?”
Her fans are glad she did. Since the book’s release six years ago, Forman has been amazed by the range of reader reactions, from the teenagers who find renewed wonder in life’s treasures to the adult readers who take solace following a personal loss in their own lives.
“This sounds really cheesy, but I just felt like a vessel of love,” Forman says. “As I wrote the book, I was feeling all this love from my friends and my husband, and I think that somehow transferred to the page.”
Since the breakout success of If I Stay, Forman has published six more young-adult novels, and she is now completing her first adult-focused book, Bypass, which is scheduled for publication next year.
And to think, it all started with a story about a girl lost in the closet.
They called him gentle and steadfast, a powerful mentor and an outstanding scholar. They remembered his wry humor and his love for learning. They raved about his homemade chocolates and caramels, and the moments spent sharing them in his company.
This past January, as word spread of Arnold Ismach’s death at age 84, dozens of friends, colleagues, peers and students of the SOJC’s tenth dean posted messages of remembrance on Facebook. The notes revealed the remarkable breadth of Ismach’s reach and impact, both within and beyond the walls of Allen Hall.
There were stories of encouragement: “Arnold helped this rookie journalist feel not only that she was in the right place, but that she had something valuable to say.”
And messages of thanks: “Good-bye to a fantastic teacher, great mentor, legendary dean, and fellow chocolate lover. Thank you for being a role model.”
And tributes to his far-reaching career: “Count me as one of many who will miss his wit, conscience, and support of Planned Parenthood and ACLU and SPJ and City Club… Rest in peace, Arnold.”
Ismach served as dean from 1985 to 1994, leading the school through a period of rapid transition as student enrollment grew and journalism’s digital age beckoned. Known as a deft fundraiser, Ismach established the School’s first endowed professorships, added the first computers to classrooms, increased student scholarships, and developed an early vision for the renovation and expansion of Allen Hall. He also worked to strengthen the School’s research tradition, hiring new faculty and laying the groundwork for the addition of a doctoral program.
“Arnold was very determined, and yet too elegant to be labeled stubborn,” says Duncan McDonald, who succeeded Ismach as dean. “Whatever the faculty and the school needed, he stuck with it.”
For all his achievements as an administrator, Ismach never lost his joy for teaching students, which he continued to do for six years after retiring from the deanship. Ismach’s son, Ricardo, says that working with budding journalists helped his dad regain a belief in the profession’s power to inspire change — a belief that had somewhat faded during his early career as a newspaper editor. “I think he recaptured the sense that journalism can bring light to things and change the world for the better,” Ricardo says. “The constant exposure to bright, young, not-yet-jaded students helped him maintain some realistic optimism.”
Ismach poured that optimism into a seemingly endless list of pursuits and passions. During his time at the UO, Ismach served terms as director of the Oregon Newspaper Publishers Association, the Oregon Association of Broadcasters, and the Greater Oregon Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists.
He also became closely involved with civic organizations around town, taking on volunteer and leadership roles at Planned Parenthood, the Oregon Hillel Foundation, the ACLU of Oregon, and the City Club of Eugene.
Still, for all Ismach’s official functions, he may be best remembered for the countless acts of kindness and friendship that endeared him to the university community. His Facebook page remains a tribute to that legacy, preserving the memories of Ismach’s wit, humility, and passion — and his chocolates, of course. Nobody forgets the chocolates.
“He was probably best known for those,” jokes McDonald. “When Arnold entertained, people didn’t much care what they were eating for dinner. They wanted the dessert.”
On a dreary December morning, Rick Attig travelled to Salem for a tour of Oregon’s 121-year-old hospital for the mentally ill. What he saw inside startled him. Pigeon droppings on the floors. Rainwater leaking through holes in the roof. A room teeming with corroded copper urns containing the unclaimed cremains of deceased patients. The conditions at the Oregon State Hospital would have made Nurse Ratched cringe in 1960. And this was 2004.
The next morning, Attig and his colleague, Doug Bates ’68, decided they would use The Oregonian’s editorial pages to pressure Salem into replacing Oregon’s dilapidated state hospital. Ten months and 15 articles later, they’d done even better. In addition to commissioning two new hospitals, the governor signed sweeping reforms to the state’s mental health system, correcting almost every major flaw exposed by Attig’s and Bates’ reporting. For their tour de force, the duo received journalism’s highest honor — a Pulitzer Prize.
“To push for change and then see it happen was really gratifying,” Attig says. “I think we won a Pulitzer Prize not just for our work, but also for what came of our work, and that was a credit to a lot of people.”
After the success of their state hospital series, Attig and Bates made it an annual ritual to meet over lunch and outline a long-term project for the year—a key policy focus that would define their editorial agenda.
The projects born from those lunch meetings helped deliver a series of landmark reforms that now quietly, yet powerfully, shape life in Oregon. There was the push to expand access to health care for low-income children. And the blitz to ban agricultural field burning. And the pointed calls for Congress to expand Oregon’s wilderness areas. Attig’s editorials were sharp, insightful, and, most of all, effective, bringing legislative action to issues previously plagued by gridlock.
“Those were by far the best years of my career,” he says. “It was really rewarding to feel like I was making a difference, and that the state was a better place as a result of our work.”
Born and raised in Corvallis, Attig launched his journalism career at the University of Oregon, where, as a sophomore, he landed an internship with The Springfield News. Within months, the paper hired Attig as its police reporter, and soon he found himself covering one of the biggest crime stories in state history. In 1982, Diane Downs was accused of shooting her three children while driving home from Marcola, yet she walked free for nine months while police struggled to build a case against her.
The story attracted seasoned journalists from across the country, but it was the 21-year-old local beat reporter who scored the biggest scoop. As the drama unfolded, Attig reported that Downs had secretly met with her two surviving children — a revelation that prompted Downs’ arrest on contempt of court charges and landed Attig a subpoena to testify in court. It was fast-paced, high-adrenaline journalism at its most addicting. “If I wasn’t hooked on newspapers already,” Attig says, “I was hooked after that.”
Attig eventually left The Springfield News to join The Bulletin in Bend, where he spent 13 years as a reporter and editor before taking a position on The Oregonian’s editorial board in 1998. In some ways, his journey defied the conventional career path for top-level journalists. While many of his peers leveraged their local success for gigs in New York City and other major media markets, Attig never left Oregon, choosing to stay in the state his family had called home for generations.
Staying put wasn’t always easy, he says, but it’s a decision that worked out as well for Attig as for the Oregonians who enjoyed his work. During his sterling newspaper career, Attig won more than 45 state, regional, and national awards, earning the loyalty of countless readers along the way. Meanwhile, his commentary on issues of social justice, public health, and the environment routinely influenced public policy, leaving a lasting mark on state politics.
It’s a record that would make even Manhattan’s finest blush. “At the end of it, I feel okay about being an Oregon man,” Attig says. “Because I grew up here, I knew what I was writing about. I knew what mattered.”
Oregon native Brent Walth started his journalism career at Milwaukie High School. He followed the guidance of his advisor, Bill Flechtner, to attend the University of Oregon School of Journalism and Communication. He graduated from the UO in 1984 with a bachelor of science in journalism and political science. He was able to combine his two majors, covering the Oregon Legislature for the Daily Journal of Commerce when he was 23-years-old.
He worked as staff writer for Willamette Week and as the state Capitol bureau reporter for The Register Guard. In 1995, The Oregonian hired him as Washington, D.C., correspondent. He later served as a senior investigative reporter on the newspaper’s projects team.
In 2001, Walth and Rick Attig ’83 were part of a team from The Oregonian to win the Pulitzer Prize for Public Service for their six-part investigative series, “Liberty’s Heavy Hand.” The series exposed grave injustice and abuses committed at the U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service. The public outcry brought by the piece led to profound changes in Immigration and Naturalization Service policy.
He is the author of highly acclaimed 1994 book, Fire at Eden’s Gate: Tom McCall and the Oregon Story, a biography of Oregon’s environmental governor. In 1995, President Bill Clinton applauded Walth’s book, calling it “a remarkable biography of the remarkable Oregon Governor Tom McCall.”
His work has been cited in books and appeared in the 2006-07 edition of the Best Newspaper Writing. He is a five-time winner of the Bruce Baer Award, Oregon’s top reporting prize; recipient of the Gerald Loeb Award, the nation’s highest prize for business and financial reporting; and a finalist for the 2000 Pulitzer for explanatory reporting. In addition, he has won more than two dozen regional awards.
He received the University of Oregon Alumni Association’s Outstanding Young Alumnus Award in 2002 and founded the Civic and Watchdog Journalism Scholarship in 2008, which is awarded yearly to a student who plans to pursue investigative reporting.
As a Nieman Fellow at Harvard University in 2006, Walth held the Louis Stark Fellowship for the examination of labor and workplace issues. As a fellow, he studied the causes and consequences of the widening income and wealth gaps in the United States, and the ways in which the media cover issues of economic disparity.
In 2011, Walth returned to Willamette Week to become the newspaper’s managing editor for news.
He lives in Portland with his wife of 21 years, Shannon, and their 14-year-old son, Griffin.
With few options for journalism programs close to home, Compton-native Dana Wade Smith left sunny California with dreams of becoming a journalist or advertising professional in a state she knew nothing about. She found a new home in the tall fir trees of Oregon, where she flourished at the University of Oregon School of Journalism and Communication.
She made sure to experience everything that Oregon had to offer – she was a student advisor, and interned at the bookstore, local television affiliate, KEZI, and a small advertising agency in town. She was a member of the new student welcome committee and was a faithful home Duck football game attendee.
Wade Smith enjoyed the rich advertising curriculum that was balanced with the traditional journalism classes, allowing her explore both of her passions. After a two-year internship with KEZI, where she wrote for the 6 p.m. news, she yearned for the creative outlet that advertising provided. She found her niche in the New York advertising culture.
She graduated in 1983 with a bachelor’s of art, but was unable to attend her own commencement ceremony due to a national advertising competition in Washington D.C.
She dove into her career in New York City and worked as an account executive with several advertising agencies, eventually rising to the position of Senior Partner at Young & Rubicam.
Following her time at Young & Rubicam, she became the President of SpikeDDB, a joint venture between DDB Worldwide and film director Spike Lee – a premier agency for African-American and urban advertising. She delivered a 15 percent profit margin and record-breaking revenues over a six-year period, and acquired new client relationships including, Pepsi, Frito-Lay, Royal Caribbean, Jaguar, McDonald’s and Remy Martin.
In 2007, Wade Smith switched gears from advertising to work at the executive search firm Spencer Stuart. She specialized in chief marketing officer, general management and senior-level communications leadership searches across the consumer packaged goods, professional services, retail and consumer durables industries.
Wade Smith was a founding member of Spencer Stuart’s global Digital Leadership Exchange. She was the co-author of Talent 3.0 Solving the Digital Leadership Challenge, Digital Directors, Putting Your Expertise to Work in the Boardroom and author of The Digital Age.
After six years at Spencer Stuart, Wade Smith returned to the creative side of advertising and joined Sparks and Honey, where she was responsible for leading client business strategy and overall engagements as the Chief Client Officer. She earned agency wins with Visa and Pepsi, two of her most rewarding clients, along with AT&T and Ben and Jerry’s.
She recently began a new venture as the Head of Marketing Innovation at Digitas Health. Wade Smith has been tasked with helping the agency transform into the leading health-and-wellness-oriented advertising agency.
Wade Smith has been away from the University of Oregon for several years, but her strong foundation was built here and she believes it is important to give back to the next generations of advertising majors at the SOJC. In 2006, she was named UO’s distinguished young alumnus, she served as a member of the University of Oregon’s Board of Trustees and the SOJC’s Journalism Advancement Council and came back to campus to give her time to students as the Richard Ward Executive-in-Residence for Advertising.
Wade Smith has also been recognized by her peers as one of AdAge’s Women to Watch, Ebony Magazine’s Outstanding Women in Marketing and Communications and is on the board for Advertising Women of New York and the Worldwide Workshop.
Wade Smith and her husband of 16 years, Ryan, and 12 year-old son, Julius, reside in South Orange, New Jersey. In her free time, she spends her time with her family, plays tennis and participates in service work at her church.
It is no overstatement to say that Bobbie Conner was handed the mantle of her tribal history from the generations who came before. Her Indian name, Sísaawipam, which hearkens to a time of melting glaciers and rising water, was given to her at 13 years old by her grandmother.
It is an old name, a name evoking ancestors who have lived for thousands of years in villages along the Snake and the Columbia and their tributaries.
Today, serving as the director of the Tamástslikt (Tah-mahst-slickt) Cultural Institute, Conner is the keeper of those histories. Standing at what she calls an “enormous” crossroads for the indigenous peoples of the Columbia River drainage area — as the tribes lay to rest the elders who were raised as native speakers of the languages — Conner is working to perpetuate the knowledges and histories of the Cayuse, Umatilla and Walla Walla people for the generations coming behind her.
Since joining the Institute in 1997 as chief financial officer to being named its director just four months before its opening in 1998, Conner has guided the program from the conviction that every tribal history is a compilation of family histories. It is those histories, embedded in geography, that informed the planning and implementation of the only tribally-owned interpretive center on the National Historic Oregon Trail, and also continue to serve as an organizational touchstone for Conner.
During her tenure as director, Conner has emerged as a powerful voice in the national conversation on cultural stewardship, lecturing on cultural preservation issues and creating opportunities for an up-and-coming generation of cultural activists, who work with well-known historians and authors on Tamástslikt projects. In 2012 she was named chair of the Board of Trustees at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of the American Indian.
Perhaps nothing better illustrates Conner and the Institute’s multi-layered conversation about culture, place and language than three permanent interconnected exhibits: “We Were,” “We Are” and “We Will Be.” Forgoing the museum standard of placing dates on artifacts, the Institute’s exhibits instead challenge visitors to experience the vast continuum that is Indian history.
“Who we are today is just as important as who will be tomorrow, and all of that is founded on who we were,” Conner said.
Conner, who grew up on the Umatilla Reservation near Pendleton, spent her early career in Seattle working for the United Indians of All Tribes Foundation providing technical assistance to Indian education grantees in the Pacific Northwest. In 1982 she returned to academia to earn a Master’s of Management from Willamette University. She spent the next 13 years working for the Small Business Administration in Denver, Washington D.C. and Sacramento.
She returned to her Oregon home in 1997 and has been working to depict an accurate history of the tribes of the Columbia River Basin and contribute to the tribal economy ever since.
In 2007 Conner was the recipient of the Ecotrust Indigenous Leadership Award for her work representing the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation (CTUIR) as a community and national leader, museum director, curator, speaker and author.
For the past decade , Conner has been working with elders and scholars to produce Caw Pawa Laakni, They Are Not Forgotten: Sahaptian Place Names Atlas of the Cayuse, Umatilla and Walla Walla, a tribal history of Sahaptian language place names, which will be published in the coming year.
Conner has served on an array of boards at both the state and local level, including as vice chair of the National Council of the Lewis and Clark Bicentennial Board of Directors and as co-chair of its Circle of Tribal Advisors as well as the board of the Lewis and Clark Bicentennial in Oregon. She also served on the boards of the Wallowa Homeland Project and the Oregon Cultural Trust. In addition to the Smithsonian’s National Museum of the American Indian, she currently serves on the board of the American Alliance of Museums.
Madeline DeFrees was only a few years out of the convent and only an hour into her first driving lesson when she hit the accelerator, careening at 50 miles per hour down the winding, not-completely-paved roads of Montana’s Rattlesnake Valley. With fellow writer and volunteer driving instructor William Kittredge hanging on for dear life, DeFrees ignored his admonition to slow down. If she was going to learn to drive, it was now or never.
DeFrees approached her teaching and writing life with the same single-minded determination. She joined the Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary in 1937, adopting the name Sister Mary Gilbert, and taught school throughout Oregon before graduating from Marylhurst College in 1948 with a B.A. in English.
After earning her Master’s in Journalism in 1951, she began her college teaching career at Holy Names College in Spokane, Wash. and in 1953 published her first book, The Springs of Silence, an autobiographical work about her experience upon entering the order. In 1963, she published Later Thoughts from the Springs of Silence and, in 1964, published her first poetry collection, From the Darkroom. Her poem A Catch of Summer was featured by Best Poems of 1965.
Two years later, at the suggestion of renowned poet and notorious western Montana bar scene fixture Richard Hugo, she moved to Missoula to teach full time at the University of Montana.
It was at Montana that DeFrees began to wrestle with the tension between her writing and convent life. DeFrees was in a contemplative order in the convent, where she spent the bulk of her time in prayer and meditation, writing poems in her head most of that time. The more she wrote, the more she wanted to write.
In 1973, DeFrees was dispensed of her religious vows, clear that she was not leaving the Catholic Church but rather devoting herself to writing. In 1978, she published When the Sky Lets Go under her given name.
After leaving the convent, DeFrees went on to teach at the University of Massachusetts, the University of Washington, the University of Victoria and Pacific University in Forest Grove, Oregon.
In 1981, DeFrees won a Guggenheim Fellowship and a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts. Again faced with the prospect of divided focus, this time between her own work and that of her students, DeFrees retired from teaching in 1985 to write full time, telling an old friend, “… If I’m any good, and I think I am, I want to spend as much time as I have left writing.”
Her poetry collection Blue Dusk, published in 2001, features a selection of poems she wrote from 1951-2001. The book earned her the prestigious Lenore Marshall Poetry Prize and a Washington Book Award. She also received the Levertov Award in 2004, given annually to an artist or creative writer “whose work exemplifies a serious and sustained engagement with the Judeo-Christian tradition.” Her most recent collection, Spectral Waves was published in 2006.
The Nixon administration insisted that the Guard was returning fire from a sniper on a nearby rooftop.
A young reporter from The New York Times spoke truth to power: There was no sniper. The shootings were unprovoked. At that moment, Zusman knew he wanted to be that reporter.
A decade later, with B.A. in English from Hobart College in upstate New York and a Master’s in Journalism from University of Oregon, Zusman joined Willamette Week, then owned by the Baker family, as a business reporter.
In 1982, Zusman and business partner Richard Meeker purchased the paper and as editor, Zusman began laying the groundwork for he calls “the DNA” of the place: building community and speaking truth to power.
Committed to Willamette Week’s “holy trinity” — great reporting, excellent writing and active intelligence — Zusman and his reporters set about making significant events interesting to a readership they assumed was smart and looking for meaning.
It’s this last element — active intelligence — that is the stamp of Zusman and where he says Willamette Week makes a difference: connecting the dots and placing things in a larger context. His fierce commitment to exceptional local journalism is lauded by staff and peers alike.
In 2005, nearly 35 years after Kent State, Zusman was at the helm when Willamette Week again spoke truth to power, becoming the first and only weekly newspaper to win the Pulitzer Prize for Investigative Reporting and the first newspaper to win a Pulitzer for a story that was originally published on the web.
Zusman and Meeker have brought the same determination to community building, achieving similar success. MusicfestNW, TechfestNW and “Candidate Gone Wild,” a series of election debates that include irreverent videos and candidate quizzes, are each recognized for their influence on creating an engaged and strengthened Portland.
Expanding on their aspiration of community building through intelligent journalism, Zusman and Meeker bought the Indy Week and Santa Fe Reporter, alternative weeklies in Raleigh/Durham, NC and Santa Fe, NM, respectively. Although serving very different markets, all three publications thrive in places where people care deeply about their communities.
Zusman is the recipient of the Gerald Loeb Award for Distinguished Business and Financial Journalism and the Bruce Baer Award. The International Society of Weekly Newspaper Editors chose his editorials as among the 12 best in the nation in three separate years. He has served as president of the Association of Alternative Newsweeklies and the Independent Media Institute. He currently serves as a judge for the Payne Award for Ethics in Journalism.
Zusman has taught journalism at the University of Oregon and has lectured at the Academy of Alternative Journalism at the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University and the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University. He is also a former fellow of the East-West Center.
Ted Hallock was a Peabody Award–winning news radio host and successful advertising executive who found his calling as an Oregon senator. He is remembered as a passionate orator, a formidable opponent, and an innovative lawmaker, helping create some of the most important legislation in the history of Oregon.
Born in Portland in 1922, Hallock attended Grant High School. He entered the University of Oregon as a prelaw student in 1940 but enlisted in the Army Air Corps shortly after the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor. By the time he returned home in 1944, he had flown more than thirty missions over Germany, was decorated with a Purple Heart, the Distinguished Flying Cross, and the Presidential Unit Citation.
He returned to the UO and changed his major to journalism. He organized an eighteen-piece band, with himself on the drums, wrote reviews for Downbeat magazine, was associate editor of the Oregon Daily Emerald, and was program director for KUGN radio. He graduated in 1948.
He earned the Peabody Award for news coverage by a local station for his work in 1952 with a news talk show on KPOJ in Portland. Other winners that year included Edward R. Murrow and Alistair Cooke. In 1959, claiming he was “too crabby to be anyone else’s employee,” he founded an advertising agency, the Hallock Agency, in Portland, which continues today as the “longest continuously operating, locally owned agency in Oregon.”
In 1962, after covering elections as part of his radio job, Hallock, a lifelong Democrat, decided to run for office and was elected to the Oregon Senate in 1963. He quickly became known as the senate’s best spontaneous orator; a sign on his office door designated him as “Windmill Tilter.”
While then governor Tom McCall gets most of the credit for Senate Bill 100, Hallock’s efforts were invaluable in passing the bill. S.B. 100, which called for every city and county in Oregon to create a land-use plan, was not without bitter opponents in a largely conservative senate.
Land laws were loosely regulated at the time, with nothing stopping developers from buying out farmland and overlooking environmental and livability concerns. McCall and Hallock, committed conservationists and well ahead of their time, used every method at their disposal to push the bill through. And, in 1973, McCall signed the bill into law.
Another progressive bill that Hallock willed through the senate was the original Bottle Bill, which the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality says has defined how Oregonians think of themselves and their environment. The bill established a deposit on bottles of carbonated and malt beverages, which has since expanded to include many other bottles and cans.
The bill was originally intended as a tool to reduce littering, and did not become an incentive for recycling until later. It was the first bill of its kind proposed in the Oregon legislature, and became one of the most intensely lobbied bills in the history of the legislature, with Ted Hallock leading the charge.
Hallock left the senate in 1983 but never really retired. He returned to advertising, and also served on the Northwest Power Planning Council, where he supported measures to restore salmon runs on the Snake and Columbia Rivers. In 1998, he conducted a weeklong interview with jazz legend Artie Shaw that spawned a thirteen-part radio biography entitled “The Mystery of Artie Shaw.” The program was broadcast in seventeen public markets in the U.S. and Canada.
Steven Kafoury, a lobbyist and former colleague in the legislature, notes that listing Hallock’s accomplishments can make him seem dry. “In fact,” Kafoury says, “he was the most outrageous personality I ever met—blindingly bright, and hugely creative, he nevertheless was quick to realize when one of his insights or suggestions was faulty . . . his language was both erudite and profane. . . . [He was] charismatic and deeply passionate about the causes he championed.” Ted Hallock died in 2006, but his contributions to Oregon changed our state forever.
Early in life, Duncan McDonald figured out his formula for success: work hard and pay attention. He was nine years old, running up and down several flights of stairs in the public housing project where he lived on the east side of Cleveland, Ohio on the three newspaper routes that he shared with his older brother, Eric. They delivered the Cleveland Plain Dealer, the News, and the Press every day.
He read the papers and observed the people around him in that post–World War II melting pot. His mother took him to museums and to the library; his favorite books were biographies. He edited both the yearbook and the student paper at West High School; he always loved to write. His teachers recommended him for a journalism scholarship at Ohio University.
The first in his family to attend college, McDonald continued to work to help support them: selling shoes, driving a forklift, serving as a dormitory counselor. One summer, he wrote ad copy for a bank; another, he interned in the PR department of a local hospital.
As a senior in college and immediately after graduation, McDonald wrote for the Athens (Ohio) Messenger, the Cleveland Plain Dealer, and the Galesburg (Illinois) Register-Mail. He earned a scholarship to Northwestern University Law School—but changed his mind and headed to the University of Missouri with a scholarship in photojournalism. It was fate—two months later he met Jane Eyre, who was studying speech pathology.
In 1966, he enlisted in the U.S. Navy, where he served as a bridge officer, communications officer, and cryptographer on the U.S.S. Intrepid during the Vietnam War. He and Jane had married on his birthday in 1968. A year after his discharge in 1969 (with medals for Vietnam service and Navy Unit Commendation), the couple headed west to Oregon, seeking adventure.
1972 was a trifecta year for the McDonalds: Duncan earned a master of science in labor relations from the University of Oregon; their daughter, Vanessa, was born; and they purchased the West-Lane News and Tri-County News in Veneta and Junction City—they thought it would be fun. They quickly became part of the community; Duncan’s mother came from Ohio to work in the front office. In 1975, UO School of Journalism dean John Crawford called and invited him to teach. This, too, was fate—for in teaching, McDonald found his true calling. His first class was Mass Media and Society, with 180 students, a number he found intimidating. He didn’t even know what tenure was then, he remembers, but “I liked teaching, and I wasn’t bad at it.”
He received the university’s Ersted Award for Distinguished Teaching in 1982; a year later, he was honored with teaching awards from the American Society of Newspaper Editors and the Modern Media Institute. Most students remember him as “tough but fair”—his “automatic F policy” is legendary—and his classroom demeanor, one that included stomping his foot to make a point.
“Reporting I with Duncan McDonald was the hardest class I ever took—and it convinced me I really could be a journalist,” says Guy Maynard ’84, retired editor of Oregon Quarterly. “Duncan was the first real model of the kind of editor I strove to be: unrelenting in his demand that you get the story right, but kind in helping you to get there.”
In the 1980s and ’90s, McDonald was a contract photographer for Sunset magazine, a wildlife photographer for Explorers World, and a book reviewer for the Chicago Tribune and for the National Press Photographers Association’s Press Photographer magazine. In 1984, he teamed up with colleague Lauren Kessler to write the definitive introductory writing textbook, When Words Collide: A Journalist’s Guide to Grammar and Style, now in its eighth edition. He is the author or coauthor of five other textbooks (four with Kessler, who calls him “one of the few people I know who can get truly excited over relative pronouns, not to mention the world’s best coauthor”).
Everette Dennis ’64, former dean of the SOJC, invited him to serve as deputy director and chief operating officer of the Freedom Forum Media Studies Center at Columbia University in 1992. Dennis wanted a “true partner in leadership who knew and understood universities, but who also had mastered the practical operations of making an institution work effectively….someone who had cosmopolitan experience and who would look at New York in a broader context than would those who were more parochial. Duncan fit the bill on all counts.”
Life in New York had its appeal, but by then, Eugene had become home. McDonald returned to the SOJC to serve as its eleventh dean in 1994, spearheading the first transformation of Allen Hall and securing funds for several endowed chairs. He also initiated the SOJC’s doctoral program, which today has tripled in size and has alumni at colleges and universities throughout the U.S.
In 1997, McDonald was tapped by the UO administration to take over as vice president for public affairs and development at the start of the Oregon Campaign, then the most ambitious fundraising campaign in the state’s history. The UO surpassed its $150 million goal, raising more than $250 million. McDonald’s favorite memory of that time, he says, was twice attending the Kentucky Derby with Jane and Richard and Beverly Lewis— their horses Silver Charm and Charismatic, dressed in Duck colors, won two of three Triple Crown races. He’d come a long way from the eastside of Cleveland.
McDonald returned to teaching in 2001, retiring in May 2011 as professor emeritus. He has served as chair of the Accrediting Committee of the Accrediting Council for Education in Journalism and Mass Communications, public director of the Accrediting Council for Graduate Medical Education, and hearing appeals chair of the American Board of Medical Specialties. He once commented that “we don’t need as much sleep as people think” and shows no signs of slowing down, continuing to serve on the board of Eugene-based nonprofit Volunteers in Medicine and spending time with grandsons Jericho and Geronimo. He says he still might go to law school.
John Conrad grew up poor near the cranberry bogs of Bandon, living in a small trailer with his adoptive parents. He would crawl under a table to listen to baseball games on the radio. He was passionate about sports.
When he wasn’t winning games for Bandon High School as a pitcher, he was writing sports stories for The (Coos Bay) World for 10 cents an inch. He never thought about college until the principal brought him into the office and told him if his grades were better, he’d probably get an athletic scholarship. He improved his grades and earned a full scholarship to play baseball at the University of Oregon.
At the UO, Conrad pitched for the Ducks and covered high school games for The Register-Guard. In 1966, he pitched an exhibition game for the semipro Eugene Royals, but never played professionally. Before graduating in 1967, he was offered a tryout by the New York Yankees. He declined: He had an offer to work for a newspaper.
After graduating from Oregon, Conrad worked for the Salem Capital Journal before joining the sports department of The Register-Guard as a reporter in 1969. He was part of a department that, under sports editor Blaine Newnham, became one of the nation’s best sports sections. He became its sports editor in 1984. He was a member of its sports staff for thirty-three years, and was voted Oregon Sportswriter of the Year in 1982—not that he cared about awards.
John cared most about the story, the readers, and his staff. He was uncompromising in his loyalty. He was tireless in making sure the job was done right. Tony Baker, The Register-Guard’s publisher, said, “John was many things: reporter, editor, teacher, mentor, friend. He was a principled and passionate editor who led by example, setting the pace for his staff—fast, thorough and fiercely independent. Pound for pound, John got more out of his staff than perhaps any other editor at the paper.”
Rich Brooks, Oregon’s football coach from 1977 to 1994, notes that “In a small college town, it is easy to be a homer, and in some places, that approach is not only expected, but it exists. But John never fell into that trap, either as a writer or as the man in charge of the sports section.” Colleagues, athletes, and coaches alike remember The Register-Guard’s sports coverage of the UO under Conrad as straight down the middle—fair, honest, balanced. His skills as a journalist were sharp: Ron Bellamy, recently retired Register-Guard sports editor and columnist, noted that Conrad “wrote as fast as he pitched.” Recognizing the emerging story of women’s sports, Conrad assigned a beat writer to travel to Pac-10 games with the UO women’s basketball team, when no other paper of comparable size made that investment. As sports editor, he continued to cover major beats himself, including three Olympic Trials in track and field and an Olympic Games. He chronicled the Ducks through a Rose Bowl, a Pac-10 basketball championship, and an Elite Eight.
Over many years, his department consistently earned state and national recognition for excellence. While doing so, John earned the abiding respect of coaches, athletes, sports executives, and—most important to Conrad—readers throughout Oregon and the West.
Conrad died unexpectedly in 2002 of a stroke after Oregon’s opening home football game of the season. He was fifty-seven. The John Conrad Press Box at the University of Oregon’s PK Park was dedicated in his memory in 2011.
Phil Semas likes to say that he has had five careers, all of them at The Chronicle of Higher Education. He has spent all but a year of his forty-four-year journalism career helping create a publication that is a “must read” every day for people in academia.
Getting into journalism, Semas says, was “almost by accident.” As a junior at Wy’East High School in Hood River County seeking a class to fill his schedule, he chose journalism simply because it sounded interesting. As it turned out, it was even more interesting than he’d expected: He became sports editor and then editor of The Wy-Hi News, the student paper.
At the UO he followed a similar course at the Oregon Daily Emerald, beginning as a sports writer, then sports editor, then editorial page editor, and, during his senior year, editor. He also worked for a while in the sports department at The Register-Guard.
After graduating in 1967, Semas worked for a year as editor of the College Press Service (CPS), a commercial news agency supplying stories to student newspapers, and then spent a year in Berkeley, California, as a stringer for CPS and The Chronicle of Higher Education. In 1969, he joined The Chronicle staff as a reporter, covering campus protests that were sweeping the country, including the aftermath of the shootings at Kent State, as well topics such as faculty unionization and science policy. In 1978 he was named managing editor.
After nearly ten years, Semas took a leave from the managing editor’s job to investigate the potential for a new publication for charities, foundations, and the nonprofit world. The Chronicle of Philanthropy began publication in October 1988; today it is the leading newspaper in that field, appearing in print eighteen times a year, with a regularly updated website and a circulation of 28,000 subscribers and an estimated 100,000 total readers. The website has 200,000 unique visitors per month generating about a million page views.
Semas served as editor of The Chronicle of Philanthropy until 1995, when he became editor of new media for both Chronicles, overseeing all online activities. Today The Chronicle website, chronicle.com, boasts traffic of more than 12.8 million pages a month read by more than 1.9 million unique viewers. He was named editor in chief of the company in 2002, overseeing all editorial operations of the two Chronicles and the website Arts & Letters Daily, which the company had acquired that year. The following year he assumed responsibility for all operations of the company, business and editorial. He added the title of president in 2009 to more accurately reflect his role.
Under Semas’ direction, The Chronicle of Higher Education has cemented its role as the go-to, credible news source about the academy. Today the paper and its website have a circulation of 64,000 regular subscribers and more than 315,000 daily readers. Online, it has 1.5 million monthly unique visitors generating more than 15 million page views. In addition, more than 1,000 colleges (including the UO) have purchased site licenses that allow anyone on campus access to all of the website. Together, the print publication and website have been nominated for nine National Magazine Awards and have received multiple honors from the Education Writers Association, the Society of News Design, the Webby Awards, and Editor & Publisher’s EPPY Awards.
Explaining his longevity at The Chronicle, Semas notes that he “expected to stay for two or three years and move on,” but that each role as well as the paper’s growth and change has offered different challenges and opportunities to learn, “especially as the world we all work in has changed so much with the advent of the Internet. In addition, the areas we cover—higher education and the nonprofit world—are fascinating and important to society.”
When not working to deliver news about higher education to the world, Semas and his wife Robin spend time with their two daughters, Katie and Anna; adopted son, Jeremy; and two granddaughters.
Wes Sullivan liked to say that his life began the day he showed up at the Campbell Club co-op at the University of Oregon, suitcase in hand. For the son of an unemployed single mother during the depression—he had supported the family with a paper route—college had seemed like an impossible dream.
It was a dream that began when a teacher at Franklin High School in southeast Portland told the young Sullivan, “You can write.” So he did, joining the Young Oregonians, The Oregonian’s student publishing group, and eventually becoming the editor of his high school paper, The Franklin Post, which was chosen as one of the All-American papers of the year in 1939. His newspaper advisor, who had recently transferred to the school from Grants Pass, suggested he meet a former student of hers who shared his interest in journalism. Her name was Elsie Brownell.
Their meeting—and Sullivan’s dream—was deferred, as he took a year off after high school, working two paper routes until he had saved $250, about $3,200 in today’s dollars, in order to enroll at the University of Oregon. At the UO, he began as a freshman writing and editing for the Oregon Daily Emerald before earning the prestigious title of editor of The Oregana, which he held for two years (Roy Paul Nelson, then a freshman, was the chief photographer). Sullivan also wrote comic poetry, dealing with subjects such as grades and girls, politics and war. These appeared in the Emerald under the mysterious byline of “JWS.”
In 1943, Wes was called up to serve in the U.S. Air Force. Although he still had two credits to complete at the UO, Dean Eric Allen allowed him to count his ROTC credits, and he received his BS in journalism that June. He served in World War II as a pilot and copilot in the Eighth Air Force, flying thirty-five missions.
At the UO, he courted Elsie, who was also a journalism student. After their first date, an ill-fated canoe trip on the Millrace, Sullivan was sure he’d never see her again.
Instead, they stayed together, raising four children and enjoying eight grandchildren, until her death. For their fiftieth wedding anniversary, he presented her with his first book, To Elsie with Love, a chronicle of their early courtship and their life together. As Alzheimer’s stole her memory, Sullivan read to her from the book so that she could remember her life. She died in 1993. He would remarry three times—all very happy marriages—to Rosemary Frank (d. 1994), Nell Crothers (d. 2004), and Ruth Gray Sullivan.
In 1945, after returning from the war, Sullivan began as news editor at the Oregon Statesman. His son, Bill, remembers him cheerfully “working at the paper until 2:00 a.m., coming home and sleeping until noon, and then getting up to do it again.” A Nieman Fellowship in 1957, unheard of for an Oregon small-town newspaper at the time, took the family to Harvard, where his classmates were Russell Baker and Tom Brokaw; he attended classes taught by Henry Kissinger and returned with a broadened mind. He worked for the Statesman and its later incarnation, the Salem Statesman-Journal, for fifty-six years, rising through the ranks to become associate editor in 1968, editor in 1975, and then chairman of the editorial board of the Statesman-Journal in 1980. He also began writing columns in 1974.
Sullivan retired in 1986. As a Christmas gift that year, his sons edited and published Jam on the Ceiling, a collection of his columns, which he continued to write weekly until 2004. He was active in his community, teaching Sunday school at First Presbyterian Church in Salem for nearly fifty years, and leading efforts to build a city hall, a library, and a central fire station in Salem. He served on the state library board, the forestry board, the local school board, and for a time as president of the local Red Cross. His son, Bill, remembers that, when questioned about his activism and its potential to conflict with his role as editor, Sullivan responded, “How can I not, when I see the needs in the community?” For his contributions, he was awarded the Salem Key Citizen Award in 1985.
Sullivan served on the Journalism Advancement Council at the School of Journalism and Communication for many years, and helped to build the Sullivan Reporting Lab in Allen Hall in memory of both his father, Bill, and of Elsie. His awards were many, including the Oregon Newspaper Publishers Association President’s Plaque for Outstanding Oregon Newsman in 1961; Oregon Journalism Roll of Honor, 1987; and the Governor Thomas McCall Freedom of Information Award, 1989. He was inducted into the Oregon Newspaper Hall of Fame in 1989.
Wes Sullivan died in 2007 at the age of eighty-six.
Ann Sullivan might object to being described as a feminist, or, as one obituary put it, “an iconic woman in Oregon journalism history.” But her fifty-one-year career at The Oregonian served as an inspiration for many women who aspired to their own newspaper careers.
Ann Sullivan was born as Anna Mae Halverson in 1918, in Wheatville, Minnesota. Her family moved to Oregon in 1931 and she attended Multnomah Grade School. A straight-A student, she graduated from Jefferson High School, where she served as editor of the school paper.
She worked her way through the University of Oregon, performing odd jobs like waiting tables, sorting cucumbers for pickles, and grading papers. She married Charles Sullivan in 1941. They divorced about ten years later.
In 1942, she earned her degree in journalism from the University of Oregon. She worked briefly for United Press before The Oregonian – facing a wartime shortage of men in the newsroom – hired her for $25 a week the same year. She shortened her name to Ann Sullivan to fit the byline space in the newspaper.
It was, as Oregonian reporter Tom Hallman Jr. has described it, a “freewheeling era” for newspapers – cigarettes, booze, and the clack of typewriters characterized the newsroom where she was the only woman. One of her colleagues, a police reporter, was a fellow University of Oregon graduate named Tom McCall.
Sullivan was assigned to the city desk and energetically reported anything that came her way, including fires, police stakeouts, car crashes, and murder trials. She was so good that, when men returned from the war, she remained on the city desk.
The late J. Richard Nokes, who in 1982 retired as editor of The Oregonian, said he considered Sullivan a “star reporter,” covering welfare, medicine, science, major courts, and county government simultaneously.
One of her longtime colleagues, the late John Guernsey, once described her as having “more guts than an Army mule.”
She was a reporter on many of the “big” stories in Oregon during her time on the city desk. She covered the 1961 murder trial of child-killer Jeannace June Freeman.
She covered early open-heart surgeries at Oregon Health and Science University, and science writing became a passion. She won several awards for her medical writing and was cited in 1982 by the Oregon Medical Association for forty years of journalistic excellence in medical writing.
One of her biggest stories was the Oregon State Penitentiary riot in 1968; she was credited with helping to bring the riot to a peaceful conclusion, negotiating with her sources inside the prison for the release of hostages. For this story, she was nominated for the Pulitzer Prize. Another memorable story was a Northwest Magazine retrospective on her former colleague, Oregon governor Tom McCall, in 1982.
She did all this while raising two daughters as a single mother.
Throughout her career, many women considered her to be an inspiration, although she personally disdained the women’s liberation movement, saying she herself didn’t feel any prejudice.
She was well-known for having her own way of doing things – and a famously messy desk. She retired in 1993 at the age of seventy-four, after fifty-one years.
When asked how she’d like to be remembered, she said, “Tell them I was a reporter.”
Ann Sullivan died in 2008 of congestive heart failure at the age of eighty-nine.
Born an only child in Santa Monica, O’Leary graduated from Palisades High School in Pacific Palisades as a member of “the infamous Class of ’65.” He started at the UO as a business major, but did not feel inspired. A natural salesman, he took a course in the principles of advertising and “fell in love with the business.”
He was involved in student council and active in the Theta Chi fraternity. He also fell in love with an elementary education major, Patty Hearn. His mentor at the School of Journalism, Willis Winter, convinced him to use his natural sales abilities and connections to realize his dream of living and working in New York City. Winter also helped him get his first interviews, at J. Walter Thompson. He and Patty left for New York immediately after graduation in 1969.
In 1972, at the age of twenty-four, he joined the November Group as an account executive for the Committee to Re-Elect the President, Richard Nixon’s re-election campaign. Serving the campaign as an account executive for national brand advertising, voter group assignments, a national direct-mail campaign, and a national collateral program was a pivotal time in his life, providing him with confidence and the knowledge of “how much I was capable of doing.”
From there, he moved on to the Marshalk Company, where he continued to build a reputation managing high-profile national accounts. In 1981, he and Patty returned to his native Southern California, where he took a job as executive vice president of the Newport Beach office of Wells Rich Greene. A few years later, he started his own business, O’Leary and Partners Advertising and Public Relations.
With University of Oregon associate professor Kim Sheehan, he has become known as an expert on word-of-mouth marketing for small businesses. They have written two books: Building Buzz to Beat the Big Boys: Word-of-Mouth Marketing for Small Businesses (Praeger, 2008) and Small Business Smarts: How to Survive (or Thrive) in a Recession (Grabbing Green Press, 2009) and created a website, grabbinggreen.com, billed as “an interactive knowledge exchange for small business.”
O’Leary’s contributions to the School of Journalism and Communication are not easily matched. He has organized an advertising workshop, helped the school launch its creative strategist model of advertising education, and showed dozens of graduates how to “get hired.” He remains an active member of the school’s Journalism Advancement Council.
In his more than thirty-five years in the advertising business, O’Leary has successfully served dozens of clients and been a speaker and presenter at more than 100 conventions, workshops, and classes. But O’Leary says the highlights of his career have been the people with whom he’s worked. And on a personal note, he says, the highlights of his life are his family-Patty, his two sons, Mark and Ryan, and his daughter, Kasey.
Albert Larson “Butch” Alford, Jr. began working at the Lewiston Tribune, the newspaper his grandfather and great-uncle founded, at the age of eleven, progressing from a bicycle mail and ad proof delivery boy to a newsroom gofer. By the time he reached high school, he was a sports and news staff reporter. He graduated from Lewiston High School in 1956 and moved to Eugene to study journalism at the University of Oregon.
At the UO, Alford was in Skull and Dagger, the sophomore men’s service honorary, and also was one of the main publicizers of Student Union activities. He joined Beta Theta Pi, a fraternity focused on sports and scholastic standards, and was a member of the Druids, the junior men’s service honorary. He graduated with a bachelor of science degree in journalism in 1960.
He became a lieutenant in the Armor Corps of the U.S. Army, serving on active duty in 1960 and 1961, before returning to Lewiston as a reporter. He quickly worked his way up the ladder, becoming the paper’s third publisher when his father, A.L. “Bud” Alford, died in 1968.
The Alford family sold 67 percent of the Tribune in 1981 to the Kearns-Tribune Corporation, which also ran The Salt Lake Tribune. When that company was bought by TCI in 1997, Alford feared he would be asked to make newsroom cuts to increase profits, so he recruited private investors and in 1998, bought back the newspaper from Kearns. As part of the sale, TPC Holdings gained control over the Moscow-Pullman Daily News.
Today, the Lewiston Tribune, which will turn 116 this year, has a circulation of 25,000, serving north central Idaho and southeastern Washington. Alford has championed a lively editorial page as part of the paper’s mission—the paper has no editorial board, which Alford has said would be “bureaucratic and cumbersome.” Longtime editorial page editor Bill Hall was known to say “all my guts are in Alford’s body.”
Alford lives his passion for newspapers. He has held key positions in a number of professional organizations, among them the American Society of Newspaper Editors, the American Press Institute, and the Pacific Northwest Newspaper Association. In 1990, the Idaho Newspaper Association named him Master Publisher.
He gives tirelessly of his time to further education. Alford served eight years on the Idaho State Board of Education, the youngest member at the time of his appointment by Idaho Governor Cecil Andrus. He chaired the Governor’s Blue Ribbon Committee on Higher Education Funding. He was the governor’s representative on the Idaho Task Force for Higher Education and chairman of the Governor’s Task Force on Education. He serves on the boards of Washington State University’s Edward R. Murrow College of Communication and the University of Idaho School of Journalism and Mass Media as well as on the UO School of Journalism and Communication’s Journalism Advancement Council. He is also enthusiastically engaged in community affairs.
He has received two honorary doctorates, from the University of Idaho and Lewis-Clark State College, but he says neither increased his IQ.
Alford is a prostate cancer survivor, with successful surgery in 1992, just in time to celebrate his newspaper’s centennial.
He and Nancy, his wife of forty-seven years, have three sons. The youngest, Nathan, is the editor and publisher of the Moscow-Pullman Daily News and became Lewiston Tribune editor and publisher on October 1, when Alford moved into semiretirement.
Doug Bates grew up in Oakridge, Oregon, a booming mill town at the time. His father owned a small shoe store that catered to loggers and mill workers. In lieu of advertising in the local weekly paper, he wrote advertorial columns—an early influence on Bates’ successful career as a writer and editor.
Bates married his high school sweetheart, Gloria Burton, during his freshman year at the University of Oregon, where he majored in journalism. He worked his way through college working in the ad service department of The Register-Guard and playing in a rock band called the Apollos. His sons, Steve and Mike, were born by the time he graduated in 1968.
Bates describes his adviser, John Hulteng, as “a superb teacher and good friend.” Hulteng helped him get his first job, at the now-defunct Spokane Chronicle. After one year there he returned to Eugene to join the reporting staff of The Register-Guard, beginning a fifteen-year stint there. The couple adopted two daughters, Lynn and Liska, who would later inspire his book Gift Children: A Story of Race, Family, and Adoption in a Divided America.
Bates left The Register-Guard for one year in 1984 to become general news editor at The Seattle Times, then returned to Eugene to become assistant managing editor, and later, managing editor. He left The Register-Guard for good in 1989 to write books and motion picture screenplays. He sold two scripts and authored a book called The Pulitzer Prize: The Inside Story of America’s Most Prestigious Award (1991).
He returned to the newspaper business for two years at The San Diego Union, becoming its assistant managing editor when it merged with The San Diego Tribune. He left in 1992 to spend a year at the coast, writing Gift Children. Shortly after its 1993 publication, he returned to the newsroom, this time to The Oregonian, attracted by a dynamic new editor from Virginia, Sandy Rowe. There he directed crime and business news for two years.
Seeking a change in the pace, however, he retreated to a home on the banks of the Deschutes River south of Bend. Within a year, he was back in the newsroom, hired by Rick Attig, then executive editor of The Bulletin.
It was, as Bates describes it, “the beginning of a fateful partnership and great friendship.” Attig left The Bulletin in 1998; shortly thereafter, Bates joined him at The Oregonian.
Fifteen years later, the two would collaborate on a series of editorials to win America’s most prestigious award. The 2006 Pulitzer Prize for Editorial Writing was awarded to Attig and Bates, “for their persuasive, richly reported editorials on abuses inside a forgotten Oregon mental hospital.” The series, “Oregon’s Forgotten Hospital,” exposed the shameful truth about Oregon’s neglected, overcrowded state mental hospital in Salem and resulted in a positive reforms in the system. Another collaboration, on uninsured children in Oregon, earned a number of honors, including the 2008 National Headliner Award and the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism.
Bates, who continues to serve as associate editorial page editor of The Oregonian, says he is looking forward to more years of working for Sandy Rowe and with his friend and colleague Rick Attig “to produce journalism that makes a difference in Oregon.”
The unofficial leader of the School of Journalism and Communication’s emeritus faculty members, Ken Metzler has had, in his words, three love affairs in his life: “flying, Betty Jane, and the University of Oregon.”
One of two children of German immigrants, Metzler was born in the town of Boring, twenty miles east of Portland, in 1929. His family endured many hardships during the Great Depression, yet Metzler remembers the Sandy River Canyon where he grew up as, in his words, “an incredible playground,” one that fostered an early love of the outdoors.
His childhood dream, fueled by his older brother John’s enrollment in the Army Air Corps, was to become a professional airplane pilot—the freedom and independence it offered appealed to him. He did learn to fly, but Metzler, who had inherited his parents’ writing ability and who had coedited his high school paper, chose a journalism career instead.
He enrolled at the University of Oregon in 1947, just as World War II veterans were returning to campus in droves. There, he worked on the Oregon Daily Emerald, wrote freelance articles for The Oregonian, and was a member of the journalism honorary fraternity Sigma Delta Chi. His roommate was Fred Taylor, who would later become editor of The Wall Street Journal.
He graduated in 1951 and took his first full-time job as a reporter for the News-Review in Roseburg. A chance encounter with a woman named Betty Paterson was, as he has described it, “the start of something big.” They married three months after their meeting. Upon the couple’s return from a European adventure in 1953, Metzler began reporting for the Coos Bay Times.
Metzler returned to Eugene a few years later, becoming editor of Old Oregon, the University of Oregon’s alumni magazine—a title he would keep for fifteen years. As editor of Old Oregon, Metzler chronicled some of the most turbulent times on the UO campus. He also launched a successful freelance writing career that put his stories in Sunset, Popular Mechanics, Travel, Farm Journal, Family Weekly, and many other publications.
In 1966, he took a sabbatical leave from the UO and earned a master’s degree from Northwestern University. He began teaching full time at the School of Journalism in 1971.
His observations on the tragic death of President Charles Johnson led to a critically acclaimed book Confrontation, which was published in 1973. The book was cited by the UO as “an important document in the school’s history.”
Metzler’s classes on magazines and interviewing were some of the most popular in the School of Journalism and Communication. All of his classes had the “Metzler touch,” including door prizes and other giveaways for students who needed encouragement. NBC’s Ann Curry still has a Linotype slug she received certifying her as a “Genius, J321, 1977.”
Of Metzler’s five books, Confrontation and Creative Interviewing are still in print. Creative Interviewing is still used widely as a textbook.
In the opening to his autobiography, his son Doug describes him as a “rippin’ whitewater rafter, brilliant teacher, boring storyteller, damn good with a chopsaw, cool dad. Knows his Goudy Old Style type from his Bodoni, and his embellishments from his baloney.”
Although he retired in 1990, Metzler continues to write and remains active, volunteering for AARP (formerly the American Association of Retired Persons) and the Eugene Police Department and serving as an official in the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at the UO. He is currently compiling a history of policing in Lane County.
Even as a young girl, Mary Ann Dean Smith says she knew “writing was essential.” At the University of Oregon, her passion for writing was intensified in her introduction to journalism class. She knew, she remembers, that “she was onto something big.” She has spent her adult life teaching writing, promoting writing, and getting funding for writing.
She was a top student at the UO, a recipient of the Crown Zellerbach Scholarship and the Oregon Press Women’s Book Award. As a freshman, she was named a member of the Alpha Lambda Delta scholastic honor society. She wrote for Old Oregon, the school’s alumni magazine, and for the Oregon Daily Emerald. She was a member of Phi Beta Kappa and Mortar Board and of journalism honorary societies Theta Sigma Alpha and Kappa Tau Alpha. She also was active in Delta Gamma sorority. She graduated cum laude from the university’s Clark Honors College in 1963 with a major in journalism.
Her experience at the Emerald had taught her that a reporting career—“with deadlines snapping at her heels”—might not be her first choice. After graduating, Mary Ann Dean did, in her words, “what women did at the time”—she got married and began a family. Wanting an adventure, she and her husband, Ken Smith, moved to New York. Her son David was born in 1964; her twins, Judy and Jonathan, in 1968. Wanting a career that allowed her to balance her love of writing with raising children, she pursued and earned a master’s degree in English education from New York University in 1969.
The family returned to their native California, where Smith taught English and journalism at Northgate High School in Walnut Creek, California, and at Loma Vista (California) Intermediate School, among others. During the summer of 1974, she was one of twenty-five teachers to attend a five-week summer institute at the University of California, Berkeley, taught by Jim Gray. The teachers returned after the summer to their schools to conduct in-service workshops for their colleagues. These workshops led to the Writing Project model.
Smith left the classroom in 1984 to work full time with Jim Gray on the Bay Area Writing Project and eventually became the program’s director.
In 1991, she and Gray went to Washington, D.C., to obtain congressional sponsorship and captured the interest of Senator Thad Cochran of Mississippi, who had heard about the writing project from teachers in his home state. Teachers had told him it was “the best professional development ever.” Cochran, a conservative, recommended to them that they get a Democrat on the House side to sponsor a companion bill. They asked George Miller, a Democrat from California, to take the lead in the House. The bill passed. Thus the National Writing Project was born.
The National Writing Project has grown to a staff of fifty. Smith, who now serves as its director of governmental relations and public affairs, is part of a nine-person executive unit. She is coauthor or editor of three books—Writing Portfolios: A Bridge from Teaching to Assessment (1992), Teachers’ Voices: Portfolios in the Classroom (1993), and The Whole Story: Teachers Talk About Portfolios (2001). In addition, she is author or coauthor of more than twenty articles on the project and on the teaching of writing. She has spoken about the writing project at dozens of conferences and given invited testimony in front of the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate. She has taught more than 300 workshops for educators and administrators.
Today the National Writing Project has sites at nearly 200 universities, including the University of Oregon, in all fifty states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Collectively, these sites serve more than 130,000 teachers a year, with more than a million participating since that first workshop in 1974. During its sixteen years of federal funding, the project has received more than $160 million to improve the teaching of writing.
Grace Edgington graduated from the University of Oregon in 1916 with a Phi Beta Kappa key and one of the first four diplomas awarded in the new field of journalism. She was twenty-four, a writer, and throughout her life she would remain a writer as she learned to be a rancher, became a mother, accepted the demands of a political life, and to many in her home state, earned their affection as the first lady of Idaho.
Following her graduation, she began to build a life for herself as a single, independent woman writer. She wrote for The Eugene Morning News and The Oregonian. She taught at the University of Washington and at the University of Oregon, where she served as the editor of Old Oregon magazine.
At Oregon she met Leonard Beck Jordan, a World War I veteran on a football scholarship finishing his undergraduate studies in economics. Like Grace, he graduated Phi Beta Kappa, and they married in 1924.
Grace’s career was ostensibly “on hold” as she took on the responsibilities of wife and mother. Len worked as a financial manager and foreman for large ranches. They had three children, Pat, Joe, and Steve. The family prospered, but in 1932, the bank that held their savings failed. A bank in Portland offered them the opportunity to take over a remote sheep ranch deep in the Snake River Canyon on the Oregon-Idaho border. If they could return the investment plus interest, the ranch would be theirs.
For the next ten years, Grace home-schooled her children and lived the rugged life of an Idaho pioneer wife—with a typewriter. She wrote about life on the ranch and the hard work that accompanied it, stories that became her best-known work, Home Below Hells Canyon.
When her children were in high school, she moved to Grangeville, Idaho; Len joined the family in 1943 after the ranch was sold. Grace resumed her career, teaching and writing for both the Idaho Free Press of Grangeville and the Lewiston Tribune.
In 1945, Len was elected to the Idaho Legislature, serving one term. His political career resumed in 1950 when his fellow Republicans persuaded him to run for governor. His platform was deeply conservative, advocating thrift and individual responsibility—values that the family knew well from their days at Kirkwood on the Snake River. Grace served as his speechwriter.
When her youngest son left for college, Grace resumed her own career in earnest, balancing her responsibilities as the first lady of Idaho with teaching and writing. Home Below Hells Canyon was published in 1954. The book sold 10,000 copies in Idaho and was translated into several languages.
As Len’s term as governor was ending, he was appointed to the International Joint Commission to develop the St. Lawrence Seaway. For two and one-half years, Grace would be immersed in a life she considered “full of snobbery and posturing” in Washington, D.C. In 1957, Len resigned and the Jordans returned to Boise, where Len went back to ranching. Grace once again directed her energy to writing, publishing the novel Canyon Boy in 1960 and researching and writing The King’s Pines of Idaho in 1961. She rejoined the Idaho Writer’s League and taught writing workshops at Boise Junior College and at the Y.W.C.A.
It was during that time that she conceived of The Idaho Reader. An anthology of stories about Idaho by Idahoans, it would be her gift to the state and to its writers, and a gift from Idaho to the rest of the world, she planned.
In 1962 Len was called upon to finish the term of deceased U.S. Senator Henry Dworshak. Back in Washington, Grace reserved the mornings to continue work on The Idaho Reader; the book was published in 1963. It was a work ahead of its time: it would be three more years until the formation of the Western Literature Association—and it firmly established Grace Jordan’s place in Idaho’s literary history.
She wrote a regular column about life in the nation’s capital, “Where Rolls the Potomac,” for ten years and formed a writing workshop for the Women’s Congressional Club. After Len had served two terms as senator, the couple returned to their home in the west.
She produced two books, The Unintentional Senator (1972), and Country Editor (1976), in four years and wrote numerous newspaper articles and columns as well as poetry. She continued to give workshops for the writer’s league and established a Boise women’s talk group that still exists today.
In 1981, two years before her husband died of cancer, she and Len shared the Boise State University President’s Award for Western Life and Letters. Grace, in her early nineties, was not finished publishing. A collection of her poems, Idaho Reflections, was printed in 1984.
On September 17, 1985, Grace Jordan died following surgery for a broken hip. She left behind seven books, one unpublished novel, hundreds of newspaper columns, and an invigorated Idaho literary scene.
Aaron “Buck” Buchwach was born February 21, 1921, in Portland, one of four sons of Russian immigrants. He began selling papers on street corners at the age of six. At Lincoln High School, he was an all-city football guard and also edited the school’s biweekly newspaper, The Cardinal.
Buck had $13 to his name when he entered the University of Oregon. He worked his way through school as a truck driver, then as a sportswriter and columnist for The Register-Guard.
While at the UO he was president of Sigma Delta Chi, assistant director of the athletics news bureau, and a campus correspondent for the Oregon Journal. He contributed articles to Old Oregon and made his first foray into public relations as promotion chairman for the fifty-first Junior Weekend on the UO campus. He also wrote for various Oregon wire services while keeping his grades high enough to earn a Phi Beta Kappa key along with his degree in journalism in 1942.
After graduation, he joined the Army and moved shortly thereafter to Hawaii to write for the Pacific Stars and Stripes newspaper. After the war, in 1946, Buck began work as a reporter for The Honolulu Advertiser. Four years later, he was lured away to a public relations job, where his penchant for attention-getting promotions would blossom.
His greatest was the February 1954 effort to help Hawaii gain statehood. Buck convinced the governor and important politicians to march down Bishop Street with a Dixieland band. He unrolled a spool of newsprint a block long on Bishop Street for people to sign the Statehood Honor Roll. The petition gained 120,000 signatures in fifteen days. Buck personally took the 250-pound roll of paper to Washington, D.C. The territory of Hawaii had to wait until 1959 for approval as a state, but Buck’s promotion remained unforgettable.
He left the public relations business in 1955 and took a cut in pay to return to his true love—the newspaper. He was named city editor of The Advertiser and helped revitalize the staff.
As his boss would later recall “He was more interested in people than things. He knew what moved people, what opened doors. His management style was to motivate by suggestion and by earned praise, rather than by order. In short he knew how to get things done.”
Buck flourished during the “show-biz” era of journalism. He interviewed every president from Herbert Hoover to Ronald Reagan, missing only Gerald Ford. He talked his way into General Douglas MacArthur’s Tokyo headquarters, interviewed Madam Chiang Kai-Shek, had a Death Row conversation with Caryl Chessman at San Quentin, held hands with Helen Keller, lunched with Shirley Temple, and was one of the biggest fans of the Queen of the Fan Dancers Sally Rand. He drove around the streets of Honolulu with Jackie Kennedy in a red convertible. Buck played softball with Arthur Godfrey, was served drinks by John Wayne, and got a slap on the back from Clark Gable. The author John Steinbeck gave him an Irish Blackthorn pen with this note: “To my friend Buck Buchwach, who carries nicely that intoxicating smell of fresh ink.”
Buck had seven children in all. A colleague described him as “a proud father who delighted in reciting the accomplishments and sharing the writings of his children as they moved through schools into adulthood.”
Buck is remembered for his mentorship of writers and of others in the business. He is credited with discovering household advice columnist “Heloise” and later getting her column “Hints from Heloise” syndicated in 1961. He began developing local-born, non-Caucasian staff members, a major change in Hawaii journalism. He also helped organize Hawaii’s Society of Professional Journalists chapter in 1983 and served as its president.
He supported a number of projects to benefit charities; with Hawaii entertainer Carole Kai and Honolulu Marathon founder Jack Scaff, M.D., in only ten weeks he organized and promoted the inaugural Great Aloha Run, which attracted almost 12,000 runners, setting records for the world’s largest first-time running event. These days, the state’s largest race averages about 20,000 participants annually and has raised about $6.5 million for more than 100 charities since its creation.
He would write The Hawaiian Cookbook in June 1974.
At The Advertiser, Buck moved from city editor to managing editor, and later executive editor and editor-in-chief, holding the latter position for more than two years before retiring in February 1989. His twenty-five-year battle with heart problems ended with a massive heart attack on September 3, 1989. He was sixty-eight.
Buck’s promotion skills never deserted him. He managed to die on a slow news day, so his colleagues, including those on the competing Star-Bulletin, were able to give him the sendoff he deserved. An article written by Gardiner Jones for The Advertiser remembered him thus: “the effect of newspapermen and newspapers is, more often than not, indirect and not clearly observable. But certainly Buchwach and his editing played a major role in island history since World War II.”
George Pasero spent more than half a century making his mark on the Oregon sports scene. Peter Thompson, former managing editor of The Oregonian who also worked with Pasero at the Oregon Journal, once said that Pasero “was so closely connected to sports that he was not only writing about sports, but he was an acknowledged part of that history.
The son of Italian immigrants, Pasero was co-editor of the Oregon Daily Emerald’s sports department and the president of Sigma Delta Chi. He graduated from the UO in 1940 and took a job with the Oregon Journal as a member of the Journal Juniors promotional department. He joined the U.S. Navy in 1942 and served until February 1946. He then returned to the Journal in the spring of 1946.
He was named sports editor of the Journal in 1956 and continued in that position until 1982 when the paper merged with The Oregonian; He amazed his colleagues by running a sports department, covering games, and writing his column, “Pasero Says,” which ran as many as six days a week for forty-one years. He continued to write a weekly column for The Oregonian after his retirement in 1985.
During his career, the National Association of Sportswriters and Sportscasters recognized him seven times as Oregon Sportswriter of the Year. The UO inducted him into its Webfoot Society, which recognizes “the best the University has to offer,” in 1986. That same year he was inducted into the Oregon Sports Hall of Fame for his special contributions to sports. In 1992 he received the UO’s Portland Alumni Spotlight Award.
He was a respected journalist known for his kindness, fairness, and humility and was liked and trusted by athletes and coaches alike.
Pasero died in 1997 at the age of 79. At the time, the Oregon Legislature memorialized him, stating that “the people of Oregon lost a local sports hero.” Oregon Senator Gordon Smith also remembered him to the U.S. Senate. “In these days where it seems that the sports world is full of million dollar salaries and million dollar egos,” Smith said, “George Pasero liked to focus on the true joys of sports.”
Longtime friend Harry Glickman ‘48 noted at his death Pasero’s small stature (5-foot-3) but said, ‘’George was a journalism giant. He had the smallest shoes in the sports department, and they will be the largest to fill.’’
His legacy continues. Each year, the Oregon Sports Awards (formerly the Hayward Awards) presents the George Pasero Team Award to a team from Oregon, regardless of competition level, which has achieved national recognition.
Dean Rea began his newspaper career in junior high school as a printer’s apprentice in Ozark, Missouri. Since then, Rea has been a major force in the lives of his students, his colleagues, and in the newspaper business in Oregon.
Rea edited his college paper at Southwest Missouri State University. He received his master’s in journalism from the University of Missouri in 1951 and moved to Oregon as the editor of the weekly Hood River News. He became the county editor for The Register Guard in 1954 and three years later, the assistant city editor, a job he held for seven years before beginning his teaching career—and finding his true calling.
Beginning in 1963, Rea taught for two years at the University of Montana before returning to Eugene and the University of Oregon in 1966 as an associate professor. Since then, Dean Rea has mentored hundreds of future journalists, helping to shape the careers of some of the most influential people working in the newspaper business today.
Rea retired from the School of Journalism in 1975—citing a desire to be a part of the newsroom computer generation—and became the managing editor of The Bulletin in Bend. He returned a year later to the assistant city editor position at The Register Guard, serving as features editor and assistant news editor before returning to teaching in 1989.
He has continued to teach as an adjunct ever since. A beloved professor, he is known best for his creative reporting assignments, for introducing future journalists to the business by hosting a lengthy list of impressive guest speakers in his reporting and law of the press classes, and for his uncompromising adherence to the highest standards and principles of journalism.
“For me, Dean Rea was simply the best in a journalism school full of great teachers,” fellow HOA inductee Mike Fancher ‘68, says. “He taught me that the way to be a journalist was always to seek truth and act with integrity. He inspired me to believe that this wasn’t just something I could do but something I must do.”
As a colleague, he is no less inspiring. As one fellow teacher put it “He is our institutional memory, our benchmark, our motivation, and our ever-supportive colleague. He is always there when we need him and often there before we know we do. He is apparently indefatigable.”
An active member of the American Amateur Press Association and author of “The Write Stuff Adventure,” a creative writing manual, he is indefatigable, indeed—Dean Rea retired a second time in 2006, forty-three years after he began teaching and the year in which he also received the Adjunct Teacher of the Year award from the SOJC. At 77, he was last seen in Allen Hall sporting a new digital camera—which he will use in his new role as The Creswell Chronicle’s sports photographer.
In the world of public relations, Rich Jernstedt seems to have done everything right. The chief marketing officer, corporate executive vice president and senior partner at Fleishman-Hillard Inc., one of the world’s largest public relations firms, is known for his expertise in consumer marketing and brand strategies. He has contributed to the success of some of the world’s leading companies and products.
Prior to his 2004 move to Fleishman-Hillard, Jernstedt served for twenty-six years at GolinHarris, most recently as chairman. During his time as chief executive officer at GH, he helped build the company from a small, local PR shop to a global firm with offices around the world. He oversaw client programs in crisis management, consumer marketing, corporate communications, and reputation management. In 2003, to mark Jernstedt’s twenty-five years of service, the company established a public relations scholarship at the School of Journalism and Communication, from which he graduated in 1969.
His professional involvement is extensive—his memberships include the Arthur Page Society, where he is secretary of the board of directors; the Institute for Public Relations, where he is also a board member; PRSA, and IABC. Jernstedt was a founding member of the board of directors of the Council of Public Relations Firms and served as its chairman in 2003. He is also a member of the American Brands Council that serves an advisory role to the America’s Greatest Brands publication. He is a frequent speaker on branding, agency management, and communications strategies worldwide.
Early in his career, Jernstedt worked in marketing communications at Container Corporation of America and served for three years as a Navy public affairs officer on aircraft carriers in the Western Pacific and the Mediterranean. The Chicagoan is a native of Carlton, Oregon.
While building an impressive career in a fast-paced and demanding field, Jernstedt has always made the time to make a difference. Children and education are at the top of his list. He is on the board of the Off-The-Street Club, Chicago’s oldest club for boys and girls, and chicagoWorkforce2.0 with other local business leaders. He served as a UO Foundation Trustee for eight years.
After graduating in 1980, Bedbury became a product manager for a small food company and soon moved to Cole and Weber Advertising as an account executive. In 1987, he left the agency business to become Nike’s worldwide advertising director. He took the Nike brand from the number three athletic footwear manufacturer to a $5 billion corporation and one of the world’s most recognized brands. He oversaw the “Just Do It” campaign, which won dozens of major advertising awards, and further developed the company’s commitment to community with the P.L.A.Y—Participate in the Lives of America’s Youth—campaign, which supports community recreation programs and facilities and encourages young people to participate in sports.
In 1994, Bedbury traded in his running shoes to live the self-employed life—consulting, writing his book, and spending more time with his wife and two children. The aspiring author sent chapters of his book-in-progress to CEOs at major corporations in the Northwest, including Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz. Soon he was back in the office, this time helping drive the regional coffee chain’s worldwide expansion. When he joined the company, Starbucks had 350 stores; in three years it grew to include several thousand stores, grocery products, and a partnership with United Airlines. In 1996, Starbucks expanded into the Japanese market.
Bedbury returned to consulting and writing in 1998, establishing Brandstream, a global brand development company, in Seattle. His book, A New Brand World: 8 Principles for Achieving Brand Leadership in the 21st Century, published by Viking Press in 2002, further established him as a brand-building genius. Reviewers noted Bedbury’s holistic approach to branding as well as his wit and wisdom; internationally known management consultant Tom Peters wrote that it helped him understand why Bedbury is “perhaps the greatest brand maven of our time.”
Bedbury was inducted into the American Advertising Federation’s Hall of Achievement in 1996. The University of Oregon Alumni Association named him Outstanding Young Alumnus in 1997. He is a speaker for the Leigh Bureau and will participate in the conference organization, Leading Minds, in Copenhagen, Sydney and Dubai this fall.
After earning his UO Journalism degree in 1949, the former Oregon Daily Emerald staff writer moved back to the Midwest for one year as news editor for TheGoodland (Kansas) Daily News. He soon returned to the Northwest as an editor and reporter for the Spokane Spokesman-Review. He then moved into advertising sales in 1953, joining the national advertising department of The Seattle Times.
His lifelong dream of owning a newspaper came true in 1956 when he bought the San Leandro, California, Morning News. In 1958, he won an award for best editorial for papers over 10,000 circulation from the California Newspaper Publishers Association. After selling the paper in 1960, he served as a sales representative for the Hall Syndicate, during which time he traveled thirteen states selling comic strips, editorial cartoons and text features to editors throughout the West. He moved to New York to become general manager of licensing and television sales in 1968.
In 1974, he was named president and CEO of Tribune Company’s syndication arm, Tribune Media Services. During his twenty-year tenure, it became the most respected syndication company in the newspaper industry, growing from $3 million in revenues to over $50 million. Reed was also responsible for expanding syndication for such writers as the Chicago Tribune’s Mike Royko and CBS correspondent Andy Rooney to more than 700 clients each. TMS also distributed dozen of popular comic strips including Dick Tracy, Shoe, Mother Goose & Grimm, and Little Orphan Annie and such outstanding editorial cartoonists as Jeff MacNelly, Mike Peters, Jack Ohman, and Don Wright. Reed retired from the company in 1993.
In 1994, Reed Brennan Media Associates took an idea and a relatively new technology, desktop publishing, and began its comics pagination business, initially signing seventeen clients, including major metropolitan newspapers such as TheBoston Globe, The Philadelphia Inquirer, and the San Francisco Chronicle. Eventually, the company served 350 newspapers with daily paginated comics, including eighty-two of the 100 largest dailies in the nation.
Reed retired for a second time in 2000, selling his company to The Hearst Corporation. He continues to provide media consulting services independently.
What began as a news feature has changed the lives of hundreds, possibly thousands, of children. In October of 1981, CBS-affiliate WBZ-4 in Boston aired the first segment of Wednesday’s Child, a weekly news feature by anchor Jack Williams designed to raise public awareness of special-needs adoption. Today, more than 525 children in the Boston area have been adopted, and news stations across the nation have developed similar programs.
Williams’ commitment to special-needs children does not end with these broadcasts. He has raised more than $6 million for special-needs adoption.In 2000, with his wife, Marci, he created the Jack Williams Endowment for Wednesday’s Child, a charitable foundation to ensure continued support, to raise awareness, and to facilitate special-needs adoption.
Williams is also a first-class journalist. His interest in broadcasting began when he was growing up in Idaho; at thirteen, he built his own radio station at home. Two years later, he was hired as an announcer by Idaho radio station KYTE. After earning his bachelor’s degree in Journalism in 1968, he worked at KIRO-TV in Seattle and KORK-TV in Las Vegas as an anchor and news director. He joined WBZ-TV in 1975.
Williams has won four Emmy Awards for his work at CBS4, including two for individual reporting for the series “Crisis at Birth,” and one for Wednesday’s Child. He is the only anchor in Boston to earn two Emmy Awards for individual reporting. In 2001, he received the Governor’s Award from the New England Emmy Association.
His work with children has likewise received top honors, including one of the first Adoption 2002 Excellence Awards from President Bill Clinton and Hillary Clinton in 1997; a Presidential Citation from Ronald Reagan in 1986; and recognition from hundreds of organizations including the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services; the American Academy of Pediatrics; and B’Nai Brith. He has seven honorary doctoral degrees and was chosen in 1996 to be a Phi Beta Kappa Fellow.
Williams is one of the original board members of the Genesis fund, an organization that established the National Birth Defect Center at Kennedy Memorial Hospital (now Franciscan Hospital for Children) in Brighton, Massachusetts, and he is on the advisory board of the Pike Institute at Boston University’s Law School, which advocates for handicapped.
Milly Wohler once explained to a colleague at The Oregonian how, at six feet tall, she was able to move through the newsroom with grace. “Tall girls can reach higher, and big feet give you better balance.” Wohler’s life illustrated that sentiment.
In 1943, she graduated from the UO with a journalism degree and a key to Phi Beta Kappa. She spent two years as a reporter at the San Francisco Call Bulletin before marrying fellow UO alumnus Ben Wohler, in 1945. His military service took them
to Florida, where she continued to work and even considered buying a newspaper.
In 1947, the couple decided to return to their native Oregon to start a family.
Motherhood expanded her focus, and she spent most of the 1950s balancing her roles as full-time homemaker and caretaker of her children while writing freelance columns for The Daily Journal of Commerce at her kitchen table. She returned to work part-time, writing wedding stories for The Oregonian, after the untimely death of her son Bill in 1960.
In 1966, when her youngest son, John, began school, she began as a full-time staff reporter for The Oregonian’s Day section. She served the paper as club editor and travel writer before taking over as editor of the Day section in 1977. In 1980, she became the first woman in the history of the paper to hold an upper-management position, when then-assistant managing editor Al McCready stepped down while his wife, Connie, was Mayor of Portland. When he returned, Wohler became editor of the Travel section. She won numerous awards, including first place in section editing from the National Federation of Press Women, and one first-place and two second-place awards for writing and section editing from the nation’s most prestigious travel writing competition, the Lowell Thomas Travel Journalism Competition of the Society of American Travel Writers Foundation. To date, it is The Oregonian’s only first-place Lowell Thomas Award.
But it was her influence in the newsroom that is her legacy. She was a trailblazer, reporting on battered women when the issue was considered taboo and covering the women’s movement long before others took notice of it. These stories appeared on the pages with “traditional” women’s fare such as recipes and household hints and brought The Oregonian national notice. She set an example for dozens of young men and women on The Oregonian staff—by pushing them to be better writers, by providing mentoring and encouragement, and by sharing with them her wit and wisdom about everything: writing, parenting, and life. Oregonian editor Sandy Rowe once called her “The Grand Dame of The Oregonian.”
Wohler retired in 1995 and died in 2001 at the age of 79. At her memorial service, Oregonian publisher Fred Stickel remarked: “Milly Wohler and people like her are the bedrock of good newspapers. With them, you can do anything; without them, nothing.”
In 1970, Boyle, then a University of Oregon senior with plans to “attend law school or buy a newspaper” suspended his education to assist his mother with the struggling family business, Columbia Sportswear, after his father died suddenly of a heart attack. Boyle and his mother, Gert, struggled further, at one point seriously considering selling the hat company his grandparents, immigrants who had fled Nazi Germany, founded in 1938.
Boyle mapped a new course for his company by listening, first to the people who were considering buying the business—and applying some of their ideas about turning the company around. He continues to listen today to the customers.
Today, the Portland-based company employs more than 1,800 people internationally and distributes products to more than 10,000 retailers. Together, Tim and Gert were named Inc. Magazine’s Northwest Entrepreneur of the Year in 1992. Boyle, now CEO, was named one of the sports industry’s most influential players by Sportstyle magazine three years in a row and in 2001 received the “Trendsetter of the Year” award from the UO’s Lundquist College of Business. Earlier this year, The Seattle Times included Columbia Sportswear on its annual listing of the top public northwest companies.
Listening continues to pay dividends. Columbia’s sales continue to increase, and in 2004 the company charted “record results;” its stock was upgraded earlier this year to “outperform” by RBC capital markets. The Oregonian has called Boyle “one of the most successful men to ever wear a fishing vest to work.”
Boyle gives tirelessly to his community, serving on many Portland-area boards. A UO Foundation Trustee, he serves as the co-chair of Campaign Oregon: Transforming Lives and was instrumental in the creation of the SOJC’s Winter Presentation room as well as the formation of the New Venture Championship Fund at the SOJC and the Lundquist College of Business.
Best known for developing the concept for the flat-panel tablet newspaper in 1981 and the protoype in 1991, Fidler’s contributions to the industry began decades earlier. At age ten, he was a carrier for The Register-Guard. While pursuing a UO journalism degree part time in the 1960s, he began working as a reporter there. His career has included positions as reporter, feature writer, science columnist, cartographer and designer. As an independent newspaper design consultant he was responsible for the redesign of more than twenty newspapers, including the Detroit Free Press and The Miami Herald; he also published Newspaper Design Notebook, a professional newsletter.
Fidler directed the Knight-Ridder Information Design Laboratory from 1992 to 1995. He also founded both Knight-Ridder Graphics Network (KRT Graphics), the first computer graphics network for newspapers, in 1983, and PressLink, the newspaper industry’s first online service, in 1985, and served as director of both organizations. In 1999, the Freedom Forum Newseum honored Fidler as an electronic news pioneer and one of history’s “Most Intriguing Newspeople” in its book Crusaders, Scoundrels, Journalists.
Former classmate, colleague, and Hall of Achievement member Patricia O’Brien notes that Fidler was “always way ahead of the curve of technology.” “He truly was a pioneer—and patient with those of us in the business who were slower to catch on.”
Fidler has been a professional in residence and later a professor at Kent State University since 1996. Currently, he holds the first Donald W. Reynolds Journalism Fellowship at the University of Missouri. He has published dozens of articles and seven books, including Mediamorphosis: Understanding New Media, first published in 1997.
Laurie Johnston’s pioneering newspaper career spanned six decades, beginning when she was fourteen and handsetting type at the Albany (Oregon) Democrat Herald. Even then, Laura Margaret Smith knew she was “a newspaper woman above all.”
At UO she continued to pave the way for women in journalism. By her sophomore year, the student once referred to by Old Oregon as the “brainstorm of the journalism shack” was honored by Sigma Delta Chi, a men’s journalism honorary, for her scholastic merits.
After graduating from UO, Johnston traveled around the world before landing in her beloved New York. She covered the Pacific from Pearl Harbor in 1943 for Reuters as one of few accredited female reporters. In 1946 she took a job in Newsweek’s traditionally male international news department, where she stayed until joining the staff of the equally male New York Times in 1949. At The Times, she would become known for the humanity and wit of her writing, covering subjects as diverse as labor strife at the Metropolitan Opera, president Nixon’s impeachment, and the early 1980s roller-skating craze in Central Park.
Johnston’s superior writing earned her a column and the recognition of her peers. She received the Meyer Berger Award for distinguished writing from Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism in 1980 for “her consistently warm and perceptive glimpses of the little and large dramas of New York.” She retired from The Times at its mandatory age of seventy but continued to live in the city she adored. She did not forget her Oregon roots, however, and in 1984 established the Richard W. Johnston Lecture Series at the SOJC in honor of her late husband and fellow Hall of Achievement member.
Even in retirement, she viewed the world with a reporter’s eye. After the World Trade Center towers were destroyed, Johnston spent many days visiting the site and analyzing how the events affected the lives of New Yorkers. She died in December 2001 at her second home in Hawaii.
Powell, an Oregon native and descendant of the original settlers of Monmouth, received his UO journalism degree in 1926 and began working as a reporter for The Bulletin in Bend. But the military was a true calling for this ROTC graduate, and in 1926 he began his career as a commissioned second lieutenant in the U.S. Army. He quickly rose through military ranks; when he retired forty-three years later in 1963, President John F. Kennedy, whom he had advised during the Cuban Missile Crisis, appointed him Ambassador to New Zealand.
His career also included such roles as 25th Division Commander; Commandant of the Infantry Center; and Commanding General, Third Army, Fort McPherson, Georgia. His last assignment was Commanding General of the Continental Army Command at Fort Monroe, Georgia, where he oversaw all active reserve and ROTC units in the forty-eight contiguous United States. Powell’s journalism background proved useful in cementing relations between the Army and the civilian community at Fort Benning, Georgia and earned him a national award for public relations achievement.
Upon his death in 1998, Robert M. Walker, then acting secretary of the U.S. Army, remembered Powell as “an officer of the highest ideals.” Walker wrote, “His life was characterized by dedication, vision, and patriotism and was an inspiring one for American youth.”
The ultimate skill in public relations is effective crisis management. Robert Short will long be remembered as one who put his communication skills to work lifting Portland General Electric out of a crippling crisis in the mid-80s.
Short served the U.S. Navy in the South Pacific before attending college. After graduating from the UO in 1950, he began his career as city editor for his hometown paper, the Klamath Falls Herald and News, and later served as news editor at KUGN Radio Eugene. He worked in the public information office of Eugene Water and Electric Board before joining PGE in 1955 as a public information director.
He became Vice President in 1964 and President in 1977, retiring in 1988 as chairman of the board and CEO of the utility. He established the company’s reputation for customer service and community relations and explained complex information about the utility to the general public. He claimed that communication was the key to his job, yet Short is distinguished as possibly the only utility CEO with a journalism degree.
Short was an active participant in his community, serving on the boards of many educational, medical, and arts organizations. For his contributions, he earned the UO Distinguished Service Medal in 1986. Then-president Paul Olum noted “Robert Short has demonstrated his belief that people should give back a part of their energy to the community in which they live…he has been aptly described as a man enamored of public service.”
Upon his death in 2001, then-PGE Chairwoman Peggy Fowler remembered Short for “getting PGE back in touch with the customer and the community.”
“He established a clear mission for the company that was customer service,” she said. “That is still with us.”
Bill Winter received his master’s degree from the SOJC in 1956 and taught for three years as an instructor before joining the University of Washington faculty. He returned to the UO as an associate professor in 1968. Advertising, the popular introductory textbook he co-authored, was published in seven languages and five editions and used around the world. But Winter’s main interest was serving students. His contagious passion for advertising made this demanding but eminently approachable professor a popular one; in Allen Hall, his office was always packed with students. He led seven UO student teams to victory in the Portland Advertising federation competition and in 1987 received the UO’s Burlington Northern Award for Outstanding Teaching. Challenging, inspiring, and encouraging, he is remembered by many as a teacher who really made a difference.
The “Bingo Wall” where he showcased the job offers of former students was legendary. Longtime friend and colleague Roy Paul Nelson called Winter a “one-man placement bureau.” Drawing on his connections from more than twenty-five years as an advertising consultant, he helped many of his students land top jobs. Former student Sandra Lane, who with Winter’s help became one of the first women hired at J. Walter Thompson, noted, “If he thought a student had any promise, he would push, pull, drag and generally badger him or her into success.”
The American Advertising Federation Winter named Winters “Advertising Man of the Year” in 1972. At his retirement in 1994, 125 former students and colleagues from Seattle to New York came to celebrate—the guest list was like a who’s who in advertising. The Willis Winter Presentation room at the SOJC, funded by his former students and colleagues, is an inspiring setting for current students and an ongoing testament to his impact.
Winter died in 1995, a year after his retirement and the death of his beloved wife, Barbara. In a memorial to the UO Assembly in 1996, Emeritus Professor Jim Lemert noted that Bill Winter was “probably the single person most responsible for putting Oregon on the national map in the field of advertising education.”
Some journalists keep their finger on the pulse of a place; few keep its heart beating. Steve Neal does both. A force committed to the ideal of journalism for the public good, Neal’s career as a political reporter and columnist for the Chicago Sun-Times has distinguished him in his community and his profession.
Early on, Neal demonstrated a fascination with politics and a desire to improve his surroundings. While attending the University of Oregon, he served as ASUO President of his sophomore and senior class and Chair of the ASUO Higher Education Committee. Neal also served as President of the Interfraternity Council. He was a member of the Friars Honorarium, Druids, and Theta Chi Fraternity, which in 1971 chose him for the national Colley Award—the equivalent of “undergraduate of the year.” He completed his master’s at Columbia University in 1972.
Neal began his career as a reporter at the Philadelphia Inquirer and the Chicago Tribune before moving to the Sun-Times. He is one of the few journalists to have interviewed Ronald Reagan in four different decades. His coverage of the Reagan shooting earned him a nomination from the Tribune for the Merriman Smith Award and recognition as a top White House Correspondent by the Washington Journalism Review in 1982.
His reporting not only enlightens, but inspires change. A three-time nominee for the Pulitzer Prize in commentary, Neal has influenced Chicago’s mayoral election process, prompting legislation that converted it from a partisan to a nonpartisan system. His commentary garnered support for the renaming of the Illinois State Library for the late poet Gwendolyn Brooks. He advocated for funding to save the home of the late Illinois Governor Adlai E. Stevenson and deterred the efforts of the Governor of Illinois to make a political dumping ground out of the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum.
Described as a “consummate American Political Historian” by the Philadelphia Inquirer, Neal is the editor of four books and the author of six, including Harry and Ike: The Partner-ship that Remade the Postwar World. Released in 2001, the book has been heralded by prominent biographers and journalists. Dr. Henry Kissinger’s review states that “Neal gives us fascinating insights into these two giants that saved the West.”
In 1999, Neal published his first collection of columns entitled Rolling on the River: The Best of Steve Neal. The book was met with much critical acclaim and earned Neal the title of “Renaissance man of political columnists” among his peers. What’s inscribed on the book’s jacket could easily describe his entire career—“Tough but fair. Illuminating. Compassionate. That’s the best of Steve Neal.”
Patricia O’Brien has turned the adage “write about what you know” into a successful career, whether writing about political intrigue or women’s friendships. As an award-winning political reporter, columnist and novelist, she knows both subjects very well.
O’Brien was married and the mother of four children in 1965 when she headed back to school to complete her undergraduate degree. She graduated the following year at the age of 30. O’Brien began her journalism career as an obit writer at the South Bend Tribune in South Bend, Indiana. In 1970, she began working for the Chicago Sun-Times, first as a reporter, then as a columnist and editorial writer. She describes 1973 as a “watershed year”—her marriage ended, she published her first book and she was awarded a Nieman Fellowship at Harvard University.
At Harvard, O’Brien met Ellen Goodman, also a single mother, who would become a lifelong friend. Their friendship provides the backbone for their bestselling collaboration, I Know Just What You Mean: The Power of Friendship in Women’s Lives. The highly acclaimed book led to this prediction by The Boston Sunday Globe: “When historians ask what it was like for women and their friends in a time that often seemed everything was changing, this will be the book that provides the texture of life as real people lived it.”
Her other works of nonfiction hold that same resonance. Her first book, The Woman Alone, which she has characterized as “…in part stories from my own life and the lives of other women who were single, widowed and divorced,” remained in print for 13 years. It was followed by Staying Together: Marriages that Work in 1976.
O’Brien, a seasoned journalist of 20-plus years, covered the Reagan administration, Congress, and the 1984 political campaigns of Gary Hart and Geraldine Ferraro. In 1987, she served as press secretary for Governor Michael Dukakis during the first half of his presidential campaign.
From these experiences, O’Brien gained insight—both personal and political—into what would fuel the content of her bestselling novels: The Candidate’s Wife and The Ladies’ Lunch. Her third novel, Good Intentions, was described by The New York Times Book Review as “The perfect plot for a summer beach read.”
In 1999, she and Goodman took part in the first Writers in Residence program at Harvard and Radcliffe, a semester-long program that provides the two schools with the opportunity to learn from the experience of renowned essayists, journalists, authors and poets.
A frequent contributor to many national magazines including Esquire, Harper’s Bazaar, and Columbia Journalism Review, she has written about Geraldine Ferraro, former White House press secretary Dee Dee Meyers, and Hillary Clinton, among others. In 1988, she was awarded a Freedom Forum Fellowship at Columbia University. Her book reviews appear regularly in The New York Times.
O‘Brien was The Baltimore Sun‘s Distinguished Lecturer at the University of Maryland School of Journalism in 1989 and has taught at Northwestern University‘s Medill School of Journalism.
Her latest book, The Glory Cloak, a novel set in the Civil War, is slated for publication in May 2004 by Touchstone Books, a division of Simon & Schuster.
Former Oregon Governor Tom McCall once told Charles Royer—who as a reporter for KOIN in Portland covered McCall’s gubernatorial campaign—that he thought it was a good thing that reporters were willing to run for public office. McCall’s reasoning: “If they’ve been good reporters, they’ve had a graduate education in public policy. They are mostly idealistic people. And they have a good sense of smell.” McCall’s words were prophetic. Royer‘s political successes have served to strengthen his journalistic ideals. His career—encompassing journalism, politics, and education—has been distinguished by a vision for the long-term quality of life in urban areas nationwide.
A Medford native, Royer worked as a reporter for KVAL-TV and KEZI-TV in Eugene while attending the university. He spent the seven years following his 1966 graduation from the School of Journalism as a reporter and news analyst. He reported first at KOIN and then at KING in Seattle, where he shared a beat with his brother, Bob. In 1969, he received an award from the American Political Science Association for distinguished public affairs reporting. He was awarded a fellowship to study government and public policy at the Washington, D.C. Journalism Center. He was also a visiting Associate at the Harvard-MIT Joint Center for Urban Studies from 1969 to 1970. In 1977, he traded journalism for politics, defeating 13 other candidates to become the mayor of Seattle.
Royer served three four-year terms in that office—longer than any other mayor in the city’s history—and guided it through the tough times of the early 80s and the business and population booms in the later part of the decade. He oversaw a number of improvements in the city, including a recycling program that is recognized as the best in the nation. His administration tackled Seattle’s social issues such as poverty, teenage pregnancy and drugs. As President of the National League of Cities in 1983, he became a spokesperson for American cities on housing, healthcare, civil liberties, and the needs of children.
In 1989, Business Month named Seattle as one of the best-managed cities in the nation. Places Rated Almanac called it the nation’s “Most Livable City,” and the national Urban Coalition named Royer the Distinguished Urban Mayor of the Year.
In 1990, Royer left Seattle for Cambridge to succeed Richard Thornburgh as director of the prestigious Institute of Politics at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard. Upon Royer’s nomination, Democratic National Committee member, the late Ronald H. Brown of the IOP’s senior advisery committee stated, “Mayor Royer believes that people make the real difference in politics, and in bringing the people of his city together he has been one of the most innovative and artful city executives in the nation.” Royer’s appointment also created recognition that, as The Seattle Times commented, “not all political savvy emanates from the East Coast.”
Today, Royer is the national program director of the Urban Health Initiative, which is funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. UHI works closely with five U.S. cities to help improve the health and safety of children living in those areas. In addition, Royer serves on the University of Washington faculty as a senior lecturer at the Evans School of Public Affairs.
Bright and intense, Price earned a reputation for his impeccable standards, strong opinions and his gruff-but-kind disposition. His passion was his hallmark. From teaching to editing, spending time with his family, or listening to a Milwaukee Braves’ ball game, Price gave each pastime equal play. His appetite for travel and addiction to trains were widely known. He memorized scheduled stops and departures in every city.
Price, who earned his BA and MA at the University of Wisconsin, joined the School of Journalism faculty in 1942. He would spend more than a quarter of a century in Allen Hall. During the summers, he sharpened his professional skills working at the copy desks of several midwest and eastern newspapers. During the school year, Price “kept his hand in” the newspaper industry by serving as editor of the Sunday edition of The Register-Guard. For 15 years, he spent his Saturday afternoons and evenings preparing the Sunday issue.
Price held the first Nieman Chair at Marquette University. The dean, Jeremiah L. O’Sullivan, described Price as “probably the best recognized of the teachers of journalism today, who has wide experience in the practical field of newspaper work.”
His doctoral work got sidetracked when his hobby of annotating bibliographies of journalism books culminated in The Literature of Journalism: An Annotated Bibliography. The reference work won the Sigma Delta Chi Distinguished Service Award for Research in Journalism in 1959 and the Kappa Tau Alpha Journalism and Mass Communications Honorary Society Research Award in 1960.
Price was also active nationally as a journalism educator. He joined the Association for Education in Journalism (AEJ) in 1937 and was the editor of Journalism Quarterly. He started the Kappa Tau Alpha chapter at Oregon. In 1966, he was elected KTA’s national president for a two-year term. He twice served as Acting Dean of the University of Oregon School of Journalism.
Ultimately, he finished his doctorate, submitting The Eugene Register-Guard: A Citizen of Its Community, as his dissertation. His degree was awarded posthumously in 1967.
Former students remember Price as “the best teacher they’d ever had.” He was tough: he expected nothing but the best from his students and his colleagues. That’s what he gave them. At his funeral, former School of Journalism Dean John Hulteng noted that “for nearly half the life of our School of Journalism Price gave the institution much of its vitality. That is the measure of our loss.”
Stephen Cannell knows that for a guy who “couldn’t spell no matter how hard I tried,” choosing a writing career was probably a bit risky. He also knows that while his dyslexia, which went undiagnosed until his mid-thirties, caused him great difficulty, he responded well to the encouragement of UO English Professor Ralph Salisbury. And ultimately, it was Cannell’s drive and vivid imagination that propelled him to fight back and succeed.
Working around, over and through what he calls “jumbled input,” the three-time Emmy award-winning writer/producer, best-selling author, and Chairman of Cannell Studios has spent 35 years writing. Cannell has created or co-created more than 38 shows, including The Rockford Files, The A-Team, 21 Jump Street, The Commish and Wiseguy.
Peter Roth, president, Warner Bros. Television, says, “He’s actually not only the most talented man that I’ve ever worked with, he’s frankly one of the most prolific writers. He has a facility as a writer unlike any I’ve ever met.”
In 1995, Cannell’s debut novel, The Plan, became a national bestseller. He followed that book’s success with more bestsellers: Final Victim, Riding the Snake, The Devil’s Work-shop and King Con. Cannell’s sixth novel, The Tin Collectors, came out in January 2001.
In 1979, Cannell formed his own production company, Stephen J. Cannell Productions. Seven years later, he formed The Cannell Studios, which excelled in production (films, mini-series, commercials), merchandis-ing, and first-run/off-network programming. It was purchased by New World Communications Group in 1995. Currently, Cannell has a variety of television and film projects lined up and other films in development with Fox 2000, Disney, CBS and Paramount Television. Cannell was the recipient of the Mystery Writer’s Award in 1975 and the Monte Carlo Television Markets Showman of the Year Award in 2001.
As a spokesperson today on the subject of dyslexia, Cannell sponsored and performed in Gifts of Greatness, an educational video. Cannell says that his real fear for “dyslexic people is not that they have to struggle with jumbled input or that they can’t spell but that they will quit on themselves before they get out of school.”
Ralph Salisbury, poet, fiction writer and professor emeritus from the UO English Department says, “As a TV writer and producer and as an author of well-informed anti-crime novels, Steve Cannell has realized the talent I first saw in a University of Oregon under-graduate writing class. He has struggled and prevailed against dyslexia. He deserves our admiration.”
Harris Ellsworth once said that he had three separate lives involving jobs for which he had no experience—which means that Ellsworth accomplished three times as much as most people do in a single lifetime.
In 1929, while manager of the Oregon Newspaper Association, Ellsworth purchased a quarter interest in The (Roseburg) News-Review, and in March of 1929 became its editor and publisher. As Roseburg struggled to recover from the loss of Southern Pacific jobs and the onset of the Depression, Ellsworth proved instrumental in bringing the Veteran’s Administration hospital to the area. The government money allotted for labor to build the hospital helped sustain the area until the timber industry took hold.
In 1936, Ellsworth put KRNR radio on the air in Roseburg, one of the first stations outside of the Portland market.
Ellsworth’s next career move took him to Washington, D.C. as the first Congressman for the newly formed 4th District. From 1942 to 1956 he served as a member of the House Appropriations Committee and represented the western states on the Rules committee. Among many efforts during his congressional career, Ellsworth was most proud of his acquisition of more money for counties from the timber harvested on lands that were once railroad right of way properties. He championed smaller local projects supporting the construction of a small port at the mouth of the Rogue River, increasing the depth of the Coos Bay Harbor and extending Bonneville Power lines to the coast.
During the last part of his tenure in office, Ellsworth served as chairman of the U.S. Civil Service Commission and as President Eisenhower’s adviser on personnel management. As an adviser, Ellsworth met with the President’s cabinet, an honor the self-described “country boy from Roseburg” appreciated.
When his Congressional career ended, Ellsworth earned his real estate broker’s license. Ellsworth sold 33 properties with a total value of over $2-million in ten years.
He handled the sales of one third of Oregon’s small papers. After retirement from real estate, Ellsworth resided in Albuquerque, New Mexico until his death in 1986.
Mark O. Hatfield, U.S. Senator-Oregon, retired and former Governor of Oregon remembers, “Harris Ellsworth was a man of highest integrity, both personally and publicly. He was noted as being one of the hardest working members of the Oregon delegation. He maintained excellent relationships with constituents and was held in the highest respect by colleagues.”
Mike Fancher has a vision—newspaper journalism committed to the public good, representative of diverse voices and responsive to readers’ needs. The executive editor of The Seattle Times has bridged the distance between his vision and his reality with a fierce commitment to independent local ownership of newspapers and those newspapers’ responsibility as a public trust.
As the newsroom’s “Zen Master” of journalistic integrity, he pushes his reporters to take their responsibility as the public’s watchdog seriously, asking them to pursue stories based on news judgment rather than economic concerns. Fancher credits the success of his newsroom, including the five Pulitzer Prizes earned under his leadership, to a belief in quality and ethics that was firmly established in his years at the UO, where he served as editor of the Oregon Daily Emerald. As a champion of civic journalism and open communication with readers, Fancher continues to write a weekly editorial for Inside the Times, explaining and exploring the paper’s process.
Fancher joined The Times in 1978 as a reporter and served as assistant city editor, night city editor and assistant managing editor of news prior to becoming managing editor in 1981. He became executive editor in 1986.
In 1986, the National Press Photographers Association selected Fancher to receive the Editor of the Year Award. This award is presented in recognition of contributions as a managing editor in setting the standards for planning and cooperation among the staff to produce outstanding newspapers. Fancher received the Publisher’s Circle Award for Executive of the Year in 1991 and 1997.
In addition to his bachelor’s degree from UO, Fancher holds a master’s in communication from Kansas State University and a master’s of business administration from the University of Washington. He is a member of the board of directors of the Walla Walla Union-Bulletin, Yakima Herald-Republic and Blethen Maine Newspapers. He has served as a member of the board of the Associated Press Managing Editors and is a member of the American Society of Newspaper Editors and the Society of Professional Journalists. He has twice served as a judge for the Pulitzer Prize. Fancher also serves on the Advancement Council for the SOJC.
Caesar Andrews, president of the Associated Press & Managing Editors, notes, “Mike has a tremendous reputation. When you hear his name, it’s connected with quality journalism. He’s a thoughtful and impressive voice in this industry.”
As one of her former students recently noted, if journalism is a calling, then many fine journalists working today first heard the call from Alyce Sheetz. She was not simply a teacher but a beloved adviser, mentor, counselor and booster.
Perhaps Sheetz motivated so many young people because rather than seeing high school journalism classes as “toys,” she embraced their potential as a place to develop practical skills. Or perhaps it was because she was uniquely capable of getting students to share her belief that journalism is a “tremendously exciting field.”
Whatever the reason, Sheetz along with her students soared.
Her commitment to journalism excellence was recognized in South Eugene High School’s student news paper The Axe, which earned nine All-American and Medalist ratings and a high school Pacemaker Award, given to the nation’s best high school newspapers.
Her exemplary teaching earned Sheetz national awards including the Golden Key Award from Columbia University, the Pioneer Award from the National Scholastic Press Association, the Medal of Merit from the Journalism Education Association and the Carl Towley Award for outstanding achievement in scholastic journalism.
But perhaps more than journalism and teaching awards, Sheetz’ greatest legacy are the students she helped guide. Steve Smith, editor of The (Spokane) Spokesman Review, says he owes his career to the woman students called “Sheetzie.” According to Smith, in every class from Day One, Sheetz taught ethical, professional journalism and a commitment to craft.
When Sheetz left South Eugene High in 1969, she continued her efforts on behalf of journalism and journalism students as an assistant professor in the SOJC, as the editor of Old Oregon and as the director of the Oregon Scholastic Press sponsored by the University of Oregon.
Her students went on to apply the lessons she provided in a variety of fields.
Robert Hulteng, a partner in a San Francisco law firm, says of the teacher he had from 1967 to 1969, “I realize that less weight may be given to the opinion of one who strayed from the path of professional journalism,” Hulteng notes. “Nonetheless, I can attest that the training I received as a journalism student and editor at South Eugene High School was invaluable. Digging out the facts, identifying the lead, respecting the deadline—these are all things I still do every day in a legal practice. Throughout 17 years of education at various levels, I know that I never had a better, tougher, fairer or more giving teacher than Alyce Sheetz.”
Colleagues and students alike would probably argue with Roy Paul Nelson’s description of himself as a “junk man.” Rather they would describe his wide-ranging expertise as absolutely invaluable to a journalism department that had just more than a dozen faculty members when he joined.
As a teacher, Nelson took on large-enrollment classes with ease and was equally successful in his publishing career. For 25 years, he wrote a monthly column on design for Communication World magazine. With more than 20 books to his credit, he became one of the nation’s leading authorities on design, layout and magazines. His books The Design of Advertising and Publication Design, among others, extended his teaching from the UO to hundreds of schools across the United States and elsewhere in the world. Since his retirement in 1986, Nelson has continued to produce new editions of two of his books and remains a prominent force in layout and design.
Nelson also understood the School of Journalism from a student’s perspective. He entered the university in 1941 as a freshman, but his education was delayed when he was drafted. Nelson was a lieutenant in the Navy during World War II, serving in the Pacific theater. After returning to the UO to finish his bachelor’s degree in 1947, he worked as an advertising copywriter, a reporter for United Press and the assistant editorial director and district manager for American Forest Products Industries. It was with diverse professional experience that he returned to the SOJC to complete a master’s degree in 1955, during which time he was also an instructor.
He modestly claimed that it was his ability to handle different subjects that led to his appointment as an assistant professor in 1957. Colleagues such as Charles Duncan, Hall of Achievement member, former dean of the school and a friend of Nelson’s, would argue that his most valuable asset was not simply his mastery of journalism but his ability to communicate it.
Also, throughout his career, Nelson worked as a free-lance cartoonist and taught the course Caricature and Graphic Humor to journalism students. His cartoons appeared in papers throughout the country.
Everette E. Dennis, ’64, Hall of Achievement member and former dean, says, “Roy Paul Nelson is a multi-talented, omni-competent person who was an inspirational teacher, a masterful writer and scholar who never lost touch with ordinary people, probably because of his penchant for cartooning. I first met him when I was a high school student, and his interest and support has been a sustaining influence for decades now.”
When Ann Curry started out as a television reporter, more than a few obstacles stood in her way. As a woman, she was entering an industry where a news producer once told her that women couldn’t be reporters because they lacked news judgment and couldn’t carry the camera. As a woman of color, she was entering an industry where, as she told Proud magazine, no one on the news shows she watched as a child even remotely resembled her.
“But the one thing anybody who knows me well will say about me,” Ann explains “is that if you give Ann Curry a challenge, if you tell Ann Curry she can’t do something, then she is going to show you that she can.”
Curry’s determination was nurtured by parents who, when faced with their own obstacles, refused to give up. Her mother, a Japanese rice farmer’s daughter, and her father, a son of a single parent during the Depression, got married despite the racism of the time and raised five children, encouraging them to aim high. Heeding her father’s advice to do work that made a difference in people’s lives, Curry found increasing success in a fiercely competitive industry.
Curry has been widely recognized for her work. Among many awards, she has earned two Emmys—one for her coverage of the October 1987 Los Angeles earthquake and another for her coverage of the explosion of a gas pipeline in San Bernadino—as well as four Golden Mike Awards. She received the NAACP Award for Excellence in Broadcasting and the Japanese American National Museum Award for Excellence.
“Ann is the consummate professional,” says Al Roker, one of her Today Show co-hosts.
Trying to sum up Everette Dennis’ career in a few words is, as Bernard Kalb says, “like trying to miniaturize hugeness.” Most simply, Dennis may be one of the most important figures in modern journalism.
Dennis’ leadership skills were apparent early when the young man from the Oregon coast became the editor of The Oregon Daily Emerald. After graduating from UO, he went on to earn a master’s degree at Syracuse and a doctorate at Minnesota. He then began a distinguished teaching career at Kansas State that eventually led him to the University of Minnesota, Northwestern, Columbia and Fordham University.
As dean of the School of Journalism and Communication, he put the school on the path to the future with his work on the Oregon Report. The report, a pivotal work that continues to influence journalism education across the county, inspired him to create the Gannett Center for Media Studies (later the Freedom Forum Media Studies Center). In turn, the men and women chosen as fellows went on to produce work that explored all aspects of journalism.
Beyond making it possible for others to study the field, Dennis has been a prolific scholar. He has written or co-authored more than 30 books on the media and established the Media Studies Journal. Recognized as one of the most widely quoted experts on the media, Dennis has served as the president of the Association for Education in Journalism and Communication, and founding president of the American Academy in Berlin.
Today, he is the Director of the Center for Communication at Fordham University and its Felix E. Larkin Distinguished Professor of Media and Communication Industries. He also serves as executive director and board member of the International Longevity Center.
Of all of his contributions to the field, the one that his colleagues note most often is his willingness to help his own students and fellows as well as the students and fellows of other institutions.
“Everette Dennis is an extraordinary exemplar of a public intellectual, distinguished by serious scholarship, the ability to articulate and synthesize ideas, and a gift for transforming ideas into action,” says Dr. Leo Bogart, sociologist and media scholar. “His broad vision and eclectic interests have taken him far beyond the field of journalism education. He is a marvelous moderator of disparate views, a caring and unselfish mentor, and an indefatigable organizer. He gets things done, he makes people think, and he does it all with a wonderful smile.”
It is probably no exaggeration to say that Eleanor Aldrich Forrester was born with newspaper ink in her veins. Her father, Ed Aldrich, owned and served as editor of the East Oregonian, and young Eleanor was quick to follow in the family business. As a high school student in Pendleton, she interviewed the superintendent of schools for the paper. Eleanor also filled in at the business office, learning the skills that would serve her well as she progressed in the business side of the industry.
During Christmas break from UO, Eleanor met EO newsman Bud Forrester. Their marriage launched one of the most effective newspaper tandems in Oregon.
Just after World War II, with Eleanor heading the business side and Bud handling the news side, the Forresters put out a weekly in North Bend. In 1950, following the death of Eleanor’s father, the two took over running the East Oregonian with Eleanor’s sister, Amy Aldrich Bedford. Despite lean times, they started motor routes to deliver the paper to neighboring counties, and in 1960, bought the first offset web press west of St. Louis.
During more than 20 years at the East Oregonian, Eleanor played a key role in the development of the paper. C.K. “Pat” Patterson, corporate general manager of the East Oregonian Publishing Company, remembers that “Eleanor has almost always been the reliable, clear and sometimes hard-headed voice of business while her husband was a pure journalist. The business mattered to him, but essentially he was a journalist at heart. Together, they balanced those interests.”
They also raised two journalist sons—Mike, publisher of Capital Press in Salem and former editor at Pendleton and Astoria; and Steve, publisher-editor of The Daily Astorian and former Washington correspondent.
In 1973 the Forresters took on The Daily Astorian, which Eleanor was involved in until her retirement in 1983. Eleanor as well as her sister Amy remain on the board of the company, which includes the Blue Mountain Eagle, in John Day; The Wallowa Chieftain, in Enterprise; and The Chinook Observer, in Long Beach, Washington; in addition to the East Oregonian, The Daily Astorian and Capital Press.
“As part of a family-owned operation, she and Bud were great believers in preserving the independence of the local newspaper,” says Phil Bladine, chairman of the board of Oregon Lithoprint, publisher of the McMinnville News-Register. “There is no question that Eleanor has been a real driving force in the whole East Oregonian organization.”
For Richard W. Johnston, it was all about words. Whether he was at UO reading books that weren’t even assigned or earning the nickname “The Blue Pencil” for his line editing at Sports Illustrated, it was the play of words—the editing—that fascinated Johnston.
Bob Creamer, a longtime colleague at Sports Illustrated remembers that “for years, Dick would edit every single piece of copy that came in.” Writers who worked with him had little need for anyone else to read their copy.
Johnston literally learned his craft in the trenches. After stints at The Register Guard and The Portland Journal, he joined United Press in 1939 and was sent to the Pacific in 1943. During World War II, he reported from Pearl Harbor, the Gilbert Islands, the Marshall Islands, Saipan, Tinian and Peleliu. He was also aboard the battleship Missouri for the Japanese surrender in Tokyo Bay. Johnston would later recall these experiences in his history of the 2nd Marine Division, Follow Me!
In 1946, Johnston joined Time magazine and then moved to Life as a text editor. In 1953, he was asked to join a team that would create a sports magazine. He scouted and hired editors and writers for the startup, and once Sports Illustrated was up and running in 1954, he oversaw the editorial voice of the publication. Today the magazine has a circulation of 3.3 million and is considered the country’s premier sports publication.
Johnston eventually became executive editor–the number-two person at Sports Illustrated. In 1970, after 17 years at the magazine, he retired but continued to contribute as a freelance correspondent for several more years.
“Dick always said that if Sports Illustrated were to make a life for itself, it had to be well-written,” Andy Crichton, a friend and SI colleague, says. “There was a special quality at the magazine in those early years, and Dick was very much responsible for that.”
Johnston died in 1981.
While Jonathan Marshall has pursued many interests in his life, he has sought only one goal: useful work. And for much of his career that work involved increasing the public’s access to information and defending The First Amendment.
Marshall’s interest in freedom of information began during his early years as editor and publisher of the Scottsdale Progress in Arizona. After the Scottsdale City Council held a secret meeting and awarded a large contract without public discussion, Marshall and the Progress led a campaign to revise the state’s open meeting law and to get a public records law on the books. Their efforts helped set a precedent for today’s stronger freedom of information laws.
Marshall’s career as a journalist was distinguished. He was inducted into the Arizona Newspapers Hall of Fame; was twice been nominated for a Pulitzer Prize; and was granted the Arizona Press Club’s Distinguished Service Award, the Arizona Newspaper Association’s Master Editor Publisher Award, and the Society of Professional Journalists National First Amendment Award. He served as president of the Arizona Newspaper Association and chairman of the National Newspaper Association’s Freedom of Information Committee.
When Jonathan and his wife, Maxine, sold the Progress after 25 years of serving as a liberal voice in largely conservative Arizona, they created the Marshall Fund. Since the Fund’s inception, the Marshalls have contributed millions to causes that have been historically ignored by other philanthropists.
Marshall’s name rings regularly through the halls at the University of Oregon’s journalism school. In 1994, Marshall established the Jonathan Marshall Award for Innovative Teaching in Journalism and Communication; and in 1999, he endowed a faculty position, the Jonathan Marshall First Amendment Chair.
“Jonathan Marshall has served Arizona well, first as a crusading publisher and now as a gadfly columnist who offers both wisdom and pointed commentary,” says Paul Schatt, Northeast Valley editor at the Arizona Republic.
Impeccable. A humorist and a wit. William Franklin Goodwin Thacher followed his passion for creative writing to a lifelong interest in advertising and the establishment of a new discipline at the University of Oregon.
Thacher came to the University of Oregon in 1914 as a professor of rhetoric. In 1917, he taught the university’s first advertising course—a copywriting class in the English Department. In 1932, he was named a professor of English and Advertising and from there he went on to build the advertising program in the School of Journalism and Communication.
Through his pioneering work in the school, Thacher provided the foundation for the current advertising curriculum, which enjoys a national reputation for excellence. Today’s students continue to be the beneficiaries of his belief that “the fundamental quality of every good ad is sincerity—simple, downright honesty. Next comes enthusiasm, the quality that makes truth glow and shine.”
As a teacher, Thacher cared deeply about the professional development of his students. He believed that education was essentially a personal interaction between a teacher and student, and he kept in touch with his students, faithfully corresponding with them long after they had taken his courses.
John Hulteng, former dean of the school and a member of the Hall of Achievement, said that Thacher was “at the same time gentle and demanding, courtly in his approach, yet insistent on the highest standards of performance.”
Thacher organized campus affiliates of the two leading national professional societies for advertising students. Alpha Delta Sigma, the men’s advertising club, named its chapter for him. He later became president of the national organization and remains its only lifetime member.
Thacher received his undergraduate and graduate degrees from Princeton. His early career included writing for Pacific Magazine.
- F. G. Thacher died in 1972.
While few could deny that Joann Byrd has helped set the standard for excellence in journalism, some might say she had a head start. Byrd began her career at the seasoned age of thirteen writing a weekly column for The East Oregonian. Her early efforts offered only a hint of the success that was to follow.
Byrd’s first job after graduating from the University of Oregon was with The Spokane Daily Chronicle. In 1978, she joined The Herald in Everett, Washington rising quickly to become executive editor in 1992–at the time, the highest-ranking woman in Northwest journalism.
While working for The Herald, Byrd earned a master’s degree in philosophy with an emphasis in media ethics from the University of Washington. Her commitment to media ethics did not go unnoticed. She soon began teaching journalism ethics at the University of Washington, and in 1995, left The Herald and the Northwest to serve as ombudsman for The Washington Post.
Next, Byrd joined the Poynter Institute for Media Studies in St. Petersburg, Florida, again to teach journalism ethics, this time to mid-career professionals. Since January 1997, Byrd has been editor of the editorial page of the Seattle Post-Intelligencer.
Nonetheless, her leadership has extended beyond individual newspapers. She is a member of the Pulitzer Board. She was a founding member of the board of directors for New Directions for News and was also a fellow at the Freedom Forum Media Studies Center at Columbia University. Byrd represents the American Society of Newspaper Editors on the Accrediting Council on Education in Journalism and Mass Communications and in 2001, she will become chair of the ASNE’s Ethics Committee.
Bob Steele of the Poynter Institute says of Joann Byrd, “When I talk about American journalists who are champions, Joann Byrd is always on my top ten list. Over her illustrious career, Joann has demonstrated that she cares deeply about the role of journalism in society, and about the citizens in our communities. When we talk about journalism in the service of democracy, we can talk about Joann Byrd as a master practitioner.”
Robert Frazier was never bashful about his love affair with the University of Oregon. As Charles Duncan noted in the introduction to a collection of Frazier’s columns, “Bob’s affection for his alma mater was deep and abiding, almost possessive.”
When he entered the University in 1940, Frazier was determined to prove himself worthy of his “Great Lady.” In both his collegiate and professional careers, he did that and more.
After graduating, Frazier began working as a reporter for The Register-Guard having earlier worked for brief periods for the Aberdeen Daily World, the Bend Bulletin, and the now defunct Eugene Daily News. At The Register-Guard, Frazier’s primary assignment ultimately became producing each day’s editorials, as well as a signed column in the Sunday paper.
From his position on The Register-Guard’s editorial page, Frazier helped shape public debate in Eugene and statewide. In a period of Oregon history noteworthy for the high quality of editorial voices in its newspapers, he stands out as one of the best.
Frazier also spend a year at Harvard as a Neiman Fellow and served for 12 years on the Neiman Reports editorial board. In addition, Frazier served on the board of the National Conference of Editorial Writers, editing its quarterly publication, The Masthead. He was a Pulitzer Prize judge in 1976 and 1977 and was elected to the American Society of Newspaper Editors in 1975.
Frazier also worked with the Oregon States Park and Recreation Advisory Committee, the Oregon Prison Association and the Governor’s Task Force on Nursing Homes.
The Honorable Alfred T. Goodwin, whose friendship with Frazier spanned 37 years, said, “His insights brightened the editorial columns of The Register Guard for a quarter of a century–indeed made it one of the most distinguished newspapers in the land. He was one of Oregon journalism’s brightest stars.”
Robert Frazier died in 1997.
When Ernest Haycox applied his University of Oregon journalism education to western literature, he reinvented the genre. In place of flowery bursts of sentiment and sensationalism, Haycox offered clear, lean, and active prose. As Haycox developed his craft, his passion for accurately portraying the settling of the western territories blossomed. His characters were easily recognizable as the pioneer men and women who settled the West. In his later years, Haycox wrote nearly exclusively of his beloved Oregon. His last novel, “The Earthbreakers,” published two years after his death in 1950, tells the story of the first year of the settlers in Oregon.
Considered the leading western writer of his time, Haycox’ stories were enormously popular. He wrote 22 novels and more than 250 short stories, many serialized in the leading magazines of the time. Ernest Hemingway reportedly purchased Colliers magazine only to read the latest Haycox serial. His Colliers magazine story, “Stagecoach to Lordsburg,” was the basis of “Stagecoach,” the classic movie that redefined Hollywood westerns.
Haycox served as president of the UO Alumni Association in 1946. In 1960, the Haycox family donated to the UO library his extensive 2,000 volume collection of rare books and periodicals of the early West and, later, the entire collection of Ernest Haycox’ personal papers.
Stephen L. Tanner, the Ralph A. Britsch Humanities Professor of English at Brigham Young University said, “Ernest Haycox was a consummate master of magazine fiction during 1920 to 1950, a golden age in popular magazine fiction. From his first magazine writing course at the University of Oregon, his motives were clear: without condescension toward a popular audience, to develop the craft of storytelling, enlarge the conventions of his chosen genre, and enrich the texture and resonance of popular fiction. His success is attested both in sales and in praise from literary stylists like Ernest Hemingway and Gertrude Stein.”
Ernest Haycox died in 1950.
He began his teaching career at the University of Iowa in 1939 and worked as an instructor in speech and drama at the University of Akron in Ohio from 1940 until 1943.
In 1947, following World War II, Starlin joined the University of Oregon faculty. He was instrumental in developing the radio-television production curriculum in the Telecommunications and Film program, introducing a graduate program and establishing the campus radio station, KWAX.
In the late 1950s and early 1960s, Starlin helped to establish the state’s first educational television broadcast facility, KOAC-TV in Corvallis. He was centrally involved in the development of Oregon Public Broadcasting, and in 1954-56, he helped launch the National Educational Television and Radio Center–now known as PBS.
Starlin’s influence soon became global. He consulted on the development of public broadcasting around the world, and served for many years on the boards of the Western Radio and Television Association and the Association for Professional Broadcasting Education.
At UO, Starlin served as vice provost for academic affairs and as acting dean of Liberal Arts (now Arts and Sciences). He retired in 1977.
Today the Glenn Starlin Endowed Graduate Fellowship rotates annually between the Department of Theatre Arts and the SOJC and is presented to the student “with a demonstrated commitment to scholarship and career potential.” In 1990, the Museum of Natural History Courtyard was dedicated in Starlin’s name.
Robert D. Clark, President Emeritus of the University of Oregon said, “Glenn Starlin had a keen imagination and creative spirit, and high standards that demanded much of colleagues and those who worked under his direction. His congenial spirit charmed us all and led to the heightening of our own aspirations.”
George Weber never wasted time or opportunity. Whie attending the University of Oregon, the accomplished pianist and orchestra leader handled the bookings for nine collegiate bands throughout the Northwest. As an advertising major, he won a scholarship to work during the summer at a Portland agency whose personnel included Arlyn Cole and Mac Wilkins. Not long after he graduated, Weber became the first employee of the new firm Mac Wilkins and Cole. During his more than 40 years with the agency, Weber helped build Cole & Weber Advertising into one of the largest agencies in the West, representing Boeing, The Oregonian, Safeco, and Silicon Graphics, among many others.
His formula was deceptively simple: surround yourself with efficient, devoted and talented people, keeping the company vigorous by bringing in young people.
By nurturing young talent in summer internships and first-year positions, Wever helped stimulate the development of Northwest public relations and advertising firms that were strong enough to challenge the world’s best.
Weber became vice president and general manager of the newly opened Seattle office of Cole & Weber Advertising in 1937 and was elected president of the agency in 1963. He retired in 1972 as chairman of the board. Weber served as president of the Advertising Association of the West and the western chairman of the American Association of Advertising Agencies.
Weber’s contributions to his community were equally outstanding. At various times, he served as director of the Seattle Symphony, Friends of the Public Library, Pacific Northwest Research Foundation, World Affairs Council, and United Way.
Michael Doherty, president of Cole & Weber said, “George Weber’s faith in young talent and his concern with helping the next generation of advertisers reach their creative potential through scholarships, internships, and mentoring helped move the entire industry to a new level of excellence.”
George Weber died in 1996.
Oregon can credit much of its success in professional sports to the astuteness and commitment of Harry Glickman, president emeritus of the Portland Trailblazers. Glickman was responsible for bringing the Blazers, one of the most successful basketball franchises, to Oregon in 1970, putting Portland on the national sports map.
Coaches, owners and players in the NBA have described Glickman as a visionary with great integrity. He was inducted to the Oregon Sports Hall of Fame in 1986, and was a recipient of the prestigious First Citizen Award for civic leadership in 1992.
Glickman founded Oregon Sports Attractions in 1952 and later brought top-ranking boxing, NFL exhibition games and even the Harlem Globetrotters to Oregon.
In 1965, Glickman was named Hockey Executive of the Year by Hockey News for organizing the Portland Buckaroos after a 10-year absence of professional hockey from Oregon.
His commitment to preserving Oregon’s quality of life is visible not only in his sports achievements, but in the social, entertainment and civic affairs for which he has been responsible. Glickman helped start a self-help association, the Sixth Man Foundation, and developed the Oregon Arena Project, arguably the most ambitious and innovative sports complex in the country.
He has been named to the Webfoot Society of the university and the Portland chapter of the UO’s Hall of Fame, and received the Portland First Citizen Award. In 1998, Glickman was the recipient of the UO Alumni Association’s Distinguished Alumnus award.
The standards set in journalism ethics by former professor and SOJC dean John Hulteng remain intact today. His book The Messenger’s Motive was one of the first journalism textbooks to address ethics and has become a staple in the field. But Hulteng’s expertise extended beyond scholarly research to the classroom.
Former colleagues have described him as a “master teacher.” After his death in 1996, four of his former students wrote in a tribute that he was “not only the best teacher of journalism anybody ever had, but a lifelong adviser, correspondent and friend.”
Hulteng joined the school’s faculty in 1955 and served as dean from 1962-69 and from 1975-77. During his first term, Hulteng pushed to have the school accredited to offer broadcasting and public relations. In addition, Hulteng created the first scholarship for news-editorial majors. In 1969, he became the first member of the school faculty to win UO’s Ersted Award for Distinguished Teaching.
Hulteng authored seven books. His publications are widely acclaimed and have brought great exposure to the school.
Hulteng left UO in 1977 to teach at Stanford, but returned in 1981 to deliver the SOJC’s annual Ruhl lecture.
The John L. Hulteng Chair in Media Ethics and Responsibility, funded by Hulteng’s widow and children, commemorates Hulteng as a man of high ethical standards.
In 1997, the John L. Hulteng Student Services Center in Allen Hall opened to honor Hulteng.
Countless journalists around the world credit their success to Lyle Nelson. He was the former director and driving force behind the John S. Knight Professional Journalism Fellowship Program, which provided an opportunity for outstanding midcareer pro-fessionals to study at Stanford in order to broaden and deepen their understanding of the dimensions of major issues and trends shaping the nation and world.
Nelson is recognized nationally as a leader in higher education and an outstanding teacher. His students have said that he inspired students in journalism and gave them the motivation to work hard and work honestly.
During World War II, Nelson worked in Washington, D.C. as a technical editor for the U.S. Army Ordinance Department, and served as an information specialist for the Bureau of Reclamation. In 1947, Nelson returned to UO as an associate professor of journalism and assisted UO President Harry Newman. Nelson played a fundamental role in fending off the Oregon House of Representatives’ plans to demand “loyalty oaths” at public universities, and was awarded for distinguished service by the American College Public Relations Association in 1953.
Nelson served as University of Michigan’s vice president of university relations from 1957-61. Four years later, he became the director of university relations and a communications lecturer at Stanford University. He also created and directed professional journalism fellowships by bringing accomplished journalists to Stanford to teach.
He was appointed executive director of the White House Conference on Education in 1965 and served as the chairman of the National Board of Foreign Scholarships.
Nelson was also the director of the California Nature Conservancy for many years, and worked on the national board of governors of the Nature Conservancy for eight years. He went on to receive the highest national award for outstanding service in conservation in 1974, the Conservancy’s Oak Leaf Cluster.
After spending 30 years chasing down stories in the farthest corners of the globe as a foreign correspondent for The Wall Street Journal and U.S. News & World Report, Jim Wallace finally returned home for good. “I almost didn’t recognize my own country,” he remembers.
After graduating from UO, Wallace began work on a master’s degree at the University of Wisconsin, but left early when The Wall Street Journal offered him a job. In 1957, he was sent to the Middle East to set up the paper’s Beirut bureau, and then to Cuba in 1960, where he was arrested and jailed several times and eventually expelled from the country as were many other foreign journalists at that time.
Wallace covered the Pentagon until U.S. News & World Report sent him to cover the Vietnam War and Indochina in 1967, an assignment that would last more than six years. He has also been stationed in Tokyo, Moscow and Beijing.
When Wallace returned home in 1983, he began work as senior editor of international news for U.S. News & World Report, and later as editor of Cosmos, the journal of the Cosmos Club. He has served on the UO Law School’s Board of Visitors and the school’s Journalism Advancement Council.
In 1982, four young and ambitious people took a card table, a few chairs and several cardboard file cabinets and began what would become one of the most respected advertising agencies in the world. Dan Wieden is co-founder, president and creative director of Wieden & Kennedy, a Portland-based company Wieden describes as driven by “chaos and energy and passion.”
Starting with only one client, Nike, the company’s list of customers has skyrocketed to include Microsoft, Coca-Cola, ESPN, Subaru and Miller Brewing Company. The agency has won numerous awards for its innovative and provocative campaigns, including National Agency of the Year in 1991 and 1996. The company now has outposts in London, New York, Tokyo, Paris, Milan, Barcelona and Melbourne.
Wieden received the prestigious UO Pioneer Award at a ceremony in May in recognition of his vision and leadership in the community. Governor Kitzhaber wrote in a letter to Wieden, “In an age of cynicism, your idealism and integrity have served as an inspiration to many.”
Every year, Wieden returns to UO and conducts creative workshops for advertising students. His philanthropy has also extended beyond the advertising world. Wieden and his wife founded Camp Caldera, a nonprofit creativity camp for inner-city kids. His list of volunteer work also includes the SMART reading program of the Oregon Children’s Foundation, the Oregon Chapter of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society and Portland Public Schools.
Wieden’s incredible list of awards includes Oregon’s Professional of the Year, Oregon’s Entrepreneur of the Year, distinction as one of the world’s 50 CyberElite by Time magazine, and one of 32 members of the One Club Creative Hall of Fame.
During his school years at the University of Wisconsin, Eric Allen was the campus correspondent for the Milwaukee Sentinel. After graduating, he held reporting jobs at the Milwaukee Free Press, the Denver Post and finally the Seattle Post-Intelligencer. He had worked there for eight years when, in 1912, he accepted a position as the head of the journalism department at Oregon. The department was still in its infancy when Allen became part of the faculty, but he soon became a respected figure on campus and in the community.
In 1916, the Board of Regents of the University raised the status of the journalism program to a School of Journalism and Allen was appointed its first dean.
Allen was a perfectionist who established rigorous educational requirements for the journalism program, developed internships with Oregon newspapers, built the school’s enrollment, and established the first graduate program in journalism in the Northwest.
His philosophy of discipline was the foundation on which he built the school. He wrote in the Portland Chamber of Commerce Bulletin in May 1913: “We will drill them [the new journalism students] hard in accuracy, terseness, fairmindeness, and ability to understand and sympathize with all classes of the community. Then we will throw them in and see if they can swim.”
When Ed Artzt was on the staff of the Oregon Daily Emerald in 1951, his colleagues teased him about going into advertising. After all, they claimed, news journalism was the real thing. But no one today would deny that Artzt and his commitment to advertising and business are for real. His career has proved it. In 1953, Ed Artzt began working with Proctor & Gamble as an account executive for their advertising agency. A year later, he joined Procter & Gamble as a sales trainee and assistant branch manager. He rose steadily in the company, eventually becoming vice president and group executive for the European community. In 1984, he became president of Procter & Gamble International, then vice chairman in 1986 and chairman and CEO 1990.
Artzt is considered the “architect” of Proctor & Gamble’s turnaround in the international market, making Procter & Gamble products household words not only in the United States but abroad, and increasing Procter & Gamble’s foreign sales by some $1.8 billion within five years. Artzt’ success has not gone unnoticed. In 1995, he was elected to the American Advertising Hall of Fame, and in 1996, he was the recipient of the UO Pioneer Award.
Artzt has put as much effort into his community as he did his business. Whether serving as the trustee for the Boys Clubs of Greater Cincinnati or as a member of President Clinton’s Advisory Committee on Trade Policy, Artzt has lent his considerable expertise to improving the world around him. For that dedication to his work and his community, he has been elected to the National Sales Hall of Fame and the National Advertising Hall of Fame.
When Don Belding graduated from the University of Oregon, he had already distinguished himself by being named one of only six honors students that year. He began his advertising career as a non-paid office boy in the Los Angeles office of Lord & Thomas. He needed only 15 years to become the vice president of Lord & Thomas and manager of that same office where he started. In 1943, Belding joined with Fairfax Cone and Emerson Foote to create Foote, Cone & Belding, which eventually became one of the largest ad agencies in the world. But Belding’s contributions were not limited to his own company. As president of the Advertising Association of the West in 1940-42, Belding formed the War Advertising Council and personally directed the history-making campaign on forest fire prevention: Smoky Bear’s “Only YOU can prevent forest fires.” The War Advertising Council evolved into the Advertising Council, the volunteer arm of the nation’s advertising industry.
In 1967, the Advertising Club of Los Angeles instituted the annual Don Belding Award for Outstanding Creativity to commemorate his significant contributions to advertising in the West. Don Belding died in 1969. He was elected to the American Advertising Hall of Fame in 1970.
Paul Brainerd is no stranger to pushing the envelope. As an undergraduate at UO, Brainerd fulfilled the requirements for a journalism major while earning his bachelor’s degree in business. He also served as editor of the Oregon Daily Emerald during 1969-70 when groundwork was being laid for establishing its independence from the School of Journalism. Brainerd was instrumental in that transition. Immediately after receiving his degree, he joined the Minneapolis Star Tribune, where he helped automate the newspaper’s use of computer technology.
Brainerd always had an interest in technology. As a young boy, he built a telephone system so that he and his best friend down the block could converse. He utilized that fascination with technology as the founder and president of Aldus Corporation, the inventor of PageMaker.
The sale of Aldus in 1994 did not signal the end of Brainerd’s contribution to his community. He immediately founded the Brainerd Foundation, which focuses on protection of the Northwest wilderness by providing grants to community-based organizations that are working to preserve and protect the environment.
His philanthropic involvement led many young, high-tech executives to contact Brainerd for advice on how to make charitable donations. He established Social Venture Partners—an organization to encourage and nurture a new generation of philanthropists—which concentrates on supporting education and children’s issues.
To call Charles Duncan’s 55 years of work simply a career does not speak to the insight and humor with which he approached it. For Duncan, the practice of journalism and the education of future journalists was a life’s work—one that included working as a newspaper reporter, an author and columnist, a journalism professor and as dean at Oregon and Colorado.
He worked as a newspaper reporter in Minnesota before taking his first job as a journalism instructor at the University of Nevada in 1940. He went on to teach at four other universities and, in 1950, he began his career at Oregon when he joined the staff as a professor. Duncan became dean of the School of Journalism (1955-1962) and dean of faculties (1965-1971) before retiring in 1979. After retiring, he continued to the university in a variety of roles and contributed columns to the Register-Guard.
He also was the author or editor of three books: An Overland Journey, Bob Frazier of Oregon, and An Orange for Christmas, a compilation of his Register-Guard columns.
Friends and colleagues respected and admired Duncan’s ability to write with grace, style, and a sense of humor. Charles Duncan died in 1997.
By the time Ted Goodwin appeared on in the January 1969 issue of National Geographic as the cowboy who became a judge, he had already served as associate justice of the Oregon Supreme Court for nine years. The man who was pictured on horseback preparing to rope a calf for branding was soon to be appointed U. S. District Judge for the District of Oregon by Richard Nixon. Goodwin’s appearance in the magazine marked the middle of a career that got its start at the University of Oregon and the School of Journalism.
While Goodwin earned his degree, he worked as a reporter at the Register-Guard. While in law school, he was editor-in-chief of the Oregon Law Review. In 1955, he was appointed to the local circuit court. Then in 1960 Gov. Mark Hatfield appointed him to the Oregon Supreme Court, which was followed by Nixon’s appointment to the U.S. District Court in 1969. Goodwin joined the appellate court in 1971. In 1988, he became chief judge of the 9th U. S. Circuit Court of Appeals, which includes nine western states, Guam and the Northern Marianas.
While his appointment to the 9th U. S. Circuit Court of Appeals required his moving to California, Goodwin has never forgotten his Oregon roots. In 1989, holding the highest judicial appointment ever attained by a graduate from the UO School of Law, he returned to give the Law School commencement address. Goodwin served on the UO Foundation Board of Trustees from 1964 to 1970. In 1972 he received the UO Distinguished Service Award, and in 1990 he was named UO Distinguished Alumnus.
After serving in World War I as an infantry sergeant major, “Ep” Hoyt came to the university and the School of Journalism. In 1926, after working for the Pendleton East Oregonian, he joined The Oregonian as a copy editor. Thirteen years later he was named editor and publisher.
In 1946, Hoyt left The Oregonian to become publisher and editor of The Denver Post, where he reestablished the newspaper’s separate editorial page, insisting on separating news from opinion. He was credited with transforming The Post into one of the best newspapers in the United States.
Hoyt’s nearly 55-year newspaper career was characterized by a persistent desire for and drive toward excellence as well as tireless involvement in national, state and local issues. While with The Oregonian, during World War II, he served as regional chairman of the War Bond committee, director of the domestic branch of the U.S. Office of War Information, president of the Oregon Newspaper Publishers’ Association and national president of the journalism society Sigma Delta Chi.
For much of his tenure in newspapers, Hoyt was a sought-after speaker. He was well known for a series of editorials denouncing Sen. Joseph McCarthy and was among the first to speak out in favor of federal aid to education. He was the first recipient of the University of Arizona’s John Peter Zenger Freedom of the Press Award for The Post’s stand against McCarthy. E. Palmer Hoyt died in June 1979.
From 1941 to 1942, Helen Kitchen served as the first woman editor of the Oregon Daily Emerald. Following college, during World War II, she accepted a job with Reader’s Digest where she spent almost two years before a senior editor arranged for her appointment as a researcher for the Office of Strategic Services, leading her to Egypt and laying the groundwork for her career as an Africanist. She is now considered one of the United States’ most respected and widely published writers on African affairs.
Kitchen returned to Washington D.C. and served in the State Department from 1951-58 as special assistant to the director of research and analysis. In 1957, Kitchen received a Secretary of State’s Award for outstanding service. She has written eight books about Africa and published articles on African affairs and the U. S. Policy making process.
Helen joined the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) in Washington, D.C. in 1981. She later became director of African Studies and consulted for the U.S. Secretary of State’s Advisory Committee to South Africa. In a review of her work published in the Journal of Modern African Studies, Lewis Nkosi wrote, “From the beginning, she has obviously understood her task as being to make some way through the sea of red herrings on which popular journalism feeds, remaining deeply conscious always of the fact that in Africa there are no easy answers.”
It is difficult to find the words to describe Tom McCall and his impact on Oregon. As the driving force behind protecting what he called the “Oregon mystique,” the former governor helped imagine and create the framework for land use and environmental consciousness that has helped protect Oregon from becoming what he called “a hungry hussy, throwing herself at every stinking smokestack that’s offered.”
McCall may be most famous for a 1971 CBS interview in which he invited people to visit Oregon but added, “But for heavens’ sake, don’t come here to live.” Before entering politics in 1949 as then Gov. McKay’s administrative assistant, McCall was a newspaper reporter, radio and television news analyst and political commentator.
He received the Sigma Delta Chi award in 1962 for outstanding documentary in the United States, Pollution in Paradise. He served as Oregon’s Secretary of State in 1965-66 and served two terms as Governor from 1967-74.
As governor, McCall is credited with saving Oregon’s beaches, with producing the nation’s first state land-use planning law and first bottle bill, and with spearheading the clean-up of the Willamette River. For his work in protecting Oregon’s natural beauty he was awarded the Audubon Society Medal, The National Wildlife Federation Conservationist of the Year Award, and The Outdoor Life Conservation Award. Tom McCall died in 1983.
It is no exaggeration to say that Lucile McDonald helped to lead the way for women journalists in Oregon, the United States and around the world. While she was a student at Oregon, she worked for the Daily Guard and was the first woman news editor for the Oregon Daily Emerald in 1917.
After graduation, at a time when few women worked in the newsroom, she began her 36-year career as a newspaper reporter, working at the Bend Bulletin, The Oregonian, and the Salem Statesman Journal. She went on to work for the Cordova Times in Alaska and spent 23 years as a feature writer for The Seattle Times.
Her distinctions as a journalist include being the first woman news reporter in South America, the first woman copy editor in the Pacific Northwest, the first woman telegraph editor, courthouse reporter and general news reporter in Oregon, the first woman overseas correspondent for a trade newspaper and the first woman on a New York City rewrite desk. While she was renowned for her reporting, McDonald was also a prolific book author. A Washington State Governor’s proclamation officially named March 9, 1991 “Lucile McDonald Day.” Lucile McDonald died in 1992.
Randy Shilts refused to be boxed in by the limits that society offered him. As an out gay man, he carved a place in journalism that was not simply groundbreaking but internationally influential in changing the way the news media covered AIDS.
As a national correspondent for the San Francisco Chronicle, Shilts was the first newspaper reporter to cover the AIDS epidemic full time. In his book And the Band Played On—AIDS: The First Five Years (1980-1985), he took almost everyone to task on how the first years of the epidemic were handled. In the process, he produced a critically acclaimed book that was translated into seven languages and became a docudrama broadcast on HBO.
He wrote two other books, The Mayor of Castro Street, and Conduct Unbecoming: Gays and Lesbians in the U.S. Military, which was on The New York Times Bestseller List. Shilts was also a staff writer for The Advocate and a reporter for Bay Area television stations.
Shilts list of distinctions include the 1993 Lifetime Achievement Award from the National Lesbian and Gay Journalists’ Association, the 1990 Mather Lectureship at Harvard University and the 1988 Outstanding Author from the American Society of Journalists and Authors.
Randy Shilts died in 1994.
Richard Neuberger’s interest in politics was apparent even in his college years at the University of Oregon. When he was a student in the 1930’s, those people interested in being editor of the Oregon Daily Emerald campaigned for the position, and the student body elected him or her.
Neuberger was the first underclassman elected as editor of the Emerald, where he turned the paper into a forum for controversial campus issues.
During his tenure, there were editorials against fraternities, restrictions on smoking, ROTC and compulsory student fees. Upon graduation, he began his writing career as a sports journalist for The Oregonian. He went on to write for other national publications, including Harper’s, The Saturday Evening Post, Life, Collier’s and Reader’s Digest.
In 1941, Richard Neuberger was elected to the Oregon House of Representatives and in 1948 he was elected to the State Senate. His political career continued when he was elected to represent Oregon in the U.S. Senate in November 1954 and took office in January 1955, where he remained a dynamic force in politics. He died in March of 1960, before the end of his first term.
He was also author of several books including The Lewis and Clark Expedition, Royal Canadian Mounted Police, Adventures in Politics — We Go to the Legislature, and co-authored An Army of the Aged and Integrity—the Life of George W. Norris.
Although Fred Taylor says he had no grand goals when he started out in the newspaper business, he certainly reached heights that most rarely do. Taylor worked for The Wall Street Journal for 30 years and was executive editor when he retired in 1986. That same year, he received the university’s Distinguished Alumnus Award.
Taylor began his career in journalism with the Astoria Budget (now the Daily Astorian) and was a sports writer with The Oregonian from 1952 to 1954. He joined The Wall Street Journal in 1955 when he began working in the New York Bureau as a copy reader which led him in 1959 to being a reporter, a page-one rewrite man and bureau chief in Detroit. In 1964 he originated the “Labor Leader” column in The Journal, and in 1966 moved on to Washington to cover the Pentagon. 1968 found him in San Francisco as the assistant managing editor in charge of West Coast operations where he was promoted in 1970 to managing editor.
In 1977, Taylor returned to New York where he was managing editor and then executive editor until his retirement. Among his responsibilities as executive editor was overseeing the production and editorial content of “The Wall Street Journal Report” on television, a nationally syndicated show produced by the paper.
He currently owns the weekly Coquille Valley Sentinel and is a stockholder in Eugene Weekly. Shortly after his retirement to his native Oregon, he started Prime Time, a monthly tabloid for seniors, which he later sold. Taylor has been a four-time Pulitzer juror and in 1992 and 1996 was chairman of the Pulitzer jury for biography/autobiography.
George S. Turnbull joined the School of Journalism at Oregon as a professor in 1917 and continued to teach through his stint as dean from 1944-1948. Along with Eric Allen, Turnbull laid the foundations and set the tone of the School of Journalism.
Following his retirement, Turnbull taught at Stanford and the University of Nebraska, was a copy editor and editorial writer for The Oregonian and was an associate editor at the Albany Democrat-Herald. He returned to the university to resume research in journalism history and was active in the journalism program into the 1970’s. Overall, he spent more years at the Journalism school than any other faculty member.
In 1971, Turnbull received the UO Distinguished Service Award. He is also the author of A History of Oregon Newspapers, An Oregon Crusader, and Governors of Oregon. George Turnbull died in 1977.