(Sponsored and co-sponsored by the Seigenthaler Chair of Excellence)

The press impact in Ferguson, MissouriDavid Fallis, deputy investigative editor of The Washington Post Bernard Lafayette


Laura Gomez2018

The Wall. which won the 2018 Pulitzer Prize for Explanatory Reporting that explored the difficulties and unintended consequences of fulfilling President Trump's pledge to construct a wall along the U.S. border with Mexico. Team members who will part of the program include reporter Laura Gomez, project manager Annette Meade and Mitchell Thorson, interactive graphics editor. A panel discussion will take place at 11:30 a.m. in the Parliamentary Room in the Student Union Buildin g on the Middle Tennessee State University campus. For more information, contact Deborah Fisher at (Part of Pulitzer Prize series). Oct. 3, 2018

War and Its Costs. C.J. Chivers, a former Marine and winner of the 2017 Pulitzer Prize in Feature Writing, (Part of Pulitzer Prize series). Feb. 6, 2018.


Future of Journalism Education Roundtable Report
Future of Journalism Education Roundtable. Discussion during a daylong event between industry leaders and academia on the state of journalism schools, trends, needs and positioning for a new generation.  Oct. 23, 2017.

Read the report / Download a PDF.

The roundtable included presentations by Stephens College President Dianne Lynch on her research project "Above and Beyond: Looking at the Future of Journalism Education," and Allan Richards, associate professor of journalism at Florida International University, on the "JMC Innovation Project."  Other guests included Bill Church, senior vice president of news for GateHouse Media; Martin Keiser, senior fellow with Democracy Fund; Eric Ludgood, assistant news director, Fox 5 News, Atlanta; Greg Luft, professor and chair of the Journalism and Media Communications Department, Colorado State University; Ronald Roberts, CEO and managing partner of DVL Seigenthaler; Tracey Rogers, vice president and general manager of WKRN, Nashville; and Thom Storey, Chair of Media Studies Department at Belomont University. For a full list of participants, see the report.

We captured the four segments of the roundtable on video.

The Opioid Crisis: Follow the Pills. Eric Eyre, winner of the 2017 Pulitzer Prize for Investigative Reporting, and Patrick McGinley, an attorney who worked with Eyre, discussed their fight to open court records that exposed the role of major drug distributors in West Virginia in the opioid crisis. (Part of Pulitzer Prize series). Sept. 28, 2017.

A fact-checker’s tales from the 2016 election. Bill Adair, founder of PolitiFact. (Part of Pulitzer Prize series). Feb. 2, 2017.


Fatal Force. David Fallis, deputy investigative editor of The Washington Post, discusses the news organization’s year-long study of police shootings in the United States and its unprecedented online database documenting all incidents. The project won a 2016 Pulitzer Prize in National Reporting. (Part of Pulitzer Prize series). Sept. 20, 2016

Free Speech on Campus, a panel discussion focusing free speech, academic freedom and hate speech, featuring Laura Kipnis, a cultural critic and Northwestern University communications professor whose essay in The Chronicle of Education prompted a Title IX investigation; Joe Cohn, legislative and policy director for Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, and Ken Paulson, dean of the College of Media and Entertainment, and president of the First Amendment Center. Oct. 25, 2016.

Diane Nash, Civil rights legend speaks to MTSU students on Constitution Day (co-sponsor). Sept. 14, 2016.


From the Front Lines of Ferguson: Covering the New Civil Rights Movement. St. Louis Post-Dispatch Pulitzer Prize-winning photographer David Carson, St. Louis alderman and activist Antonio French, and USA TODAY national reporter Yamiche Alcindor.

Josh Williams, multimedia editor of The New York Times, speaks. (co-sponsor)

Don’t Sell Your Friends: How Social Media Became Social Programming. Douglas Rushkoff, media theorist, speaks on: (co-sponsor)

Sharyl Attkisson. Award-winning former CBS and CNN investigative journalist  speaks on topics such as governmental intimidation of journalists, and network news’ increasing reliance on pop culture “reporting.” (co-sponsor)

No Voice, No Choice - The Voting Rights Act at 50. Civil Rights Movement icons Revs. James Lawson and C.T. Vivian, as part of Constitution Day (co-sponsor)

First Amendment and Beyond: An Editorial Cartoonist’s Life. Cartoonist Daryl Cagle (co-sponsor)


Leonard Pitts Jr. Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist, speaks on “It’s Time to Face Facts.”

Sebastian Junger. Author of War and the Perfect Storm, speaks on “Dispatches from War: Stories from the Front Lines of History.”

Global Politics in the Post-Obama Era. Featuring international human rights lawyer and media commentator Arsalan T. Iftikhar as speaker.


Living the First Amendment. Lecture with John Seigenthaler and son John M. Seigenthaler.

Uncovering Corruption: Tracking the Special Interest Money that is Making Washington Ungovernable. Sandy Johnson, managing editor of the Center for Public Integrity.


Earl Graves Sr. Founder and publisher of Black Enterprise magazine, speaks.

George Curry. Journalist with Sports Illustrated, St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

From Crime Lab to Crime Fiction.  Dr. Kathy Reichs, producer of the Fox TV series “Bones”.

Gloria Steinem. Feminist, political activist, journalist and co-founder of Ms. magazine.

Chuck Klosterman. Pop culture critic and author.

Establishing Justice: The New Supreme Court. Award-winning National Public Radio legal affairs correspondent Nina Totenberg,


We’re Someplace We’ve Never Been: Race, Diversity and the New America. Eugene Robinson, columnist and TV commentator.

Free Speech on University Campuses: The State of Play.  Gene Policinski of the First Amendment Center and Nashville Scene columnist and Vanderbilt professor Bruce Barry, with a performance by the First Amendment Center’s Freedom Sings multimedia program. (Part of Constitution Day events)

The Internet and the First Amendment.  Robert Cox, president of the Media Bloggers Association.

Panel on First Amendment Freedoms. John Seigenthaler, Richard Land of the Southern Baptist Convention, and former NAACP executive Elaine Jones.

Torture and Truth: America, Abu Gharaib and the War on Terror. Investigative reporter Mark Danner discusses his new book.

Civil Liberties: Surveillance and Terrorism.  Author and editor Roger Newman.

Body Image and the Media.  Documentary filmmaker Jesse Epstein.


Race, the Media, and Presidential Politics: The Truth about the Fact. USA Today columnist DeWayne Wickham.

Women, Media and the Presidential Election. Carol Swain (Vanderbilt Law), Rita Henley Jensen (Women’s eNews editor and founder) and author Maurine Beasley.

Wikipedia. John Seigenthaler, Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales and others debate the reliability, credibility and erroneous information on Wikipedia’s Seigenthaler biographical entry.

The Media and Hillary Clinton. The New Yorker editor Susan Morrison.

Underreported and Overexposed: People of Color in the Media. CNN anchor Fredricka Whitfield.

History in the Making: Press Coverage of the Presidential Campaign. John Seigenthaler, Bill Kovach, John Mashek and Pulitzer Prize-winning Associated Press journalist Walter Mears.

One on One with Candy Crowley.  CNN chief political correspondent.


Terry Gross. Co-executive producer and host of NPR’s Fresh Air, lectures.

Media Ethics Summit Conference (co-sponsor).

Study in Free Expression Theory (co-sponsor).

Will Work Leave You Speechless?  Vanderbilt professor-author Bruce Barry.


Vice President Al Gore.

Covering the Front Lines: The Evolution of War Journalism and the Lasting Effects of War Coverage in Journalism.   David Halberstam, author and former Pulitzer Prize-winning war correspondent for The New York Times.

Self-Inflicted Wounds — Journalism’s Lost Credibility.  Al Gore, John Seigenthaler, Pulitzer Prize-winning The Washington Post reporter Carl Bernstein, USA Today executive editor John Hillkirk, and The New York Times Jonathan Landman.

Women and Media: Are Women’s Voices Heard in Mainstream Journalism? TV news correspondent Lynn Sherr  of “20/20”.


Rhythm & Blues in Black & White: A Discussion of Race and Music. A panel in conjunction with the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum’s exhibit Night Train to Nashville: Music City Rhythm & Blues, 1945-1970.

When War is Reduced to a Photograph.  Barbie Zelizer, professor at the University of Pennsylvania. 


Embedding Journalists with a Military Fighting Force. Eric Ludgood, CNN vie president of international programming.

The Media and the Emotions of War.  Columbia University professor and author Todd Gitlin.

The Rise and Fall of the Marketplace of Ideas. Communications scholar John Durham Peters of the University of Iowa.

Shaking the Foundation: Investigative Journalism and the Death Penalty.  Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Ken Armstrong.

News Media and Cultural Diversity: Challenges and Best Practices. Panel that includes El Paso Times editor Don Flores and Seattle Post-Intelligencer editor Kenneth Bunting.


Former Vice President Al Gore. A year-long lecture series on “Media and Democracy.”

Race in the New Century: A View from the Newsroom. Panel with Pulitzer Prize-winning Philadelphia Inquirer columnist Acel Moore.

Herman S. Gray. Author of “Watching race: Television and the Sign of Blackness.”

Post Sept. 11 Journalism. Baltimore Sun editor William K. Marimow, a two-time Pulitzer Prize winner.

A Word on Words.  30th anniversary of taping, with two shows dedicated to First Amendment issues. Participants include author David Halberstam, Bill Kovach, and authors Winston Groom (Forrest Gump) and Alice Randall (A Wind Done Gone).

Journalism After 9-11. Panel with former New York Times writer Anthony Lewis, columnist and scholar Geneva Overholser, University of London professor Philip Drummond, and Shaker Elsayed, secretary general of the Muslim American Society.

Creative Freedom and Producing Music Outside the Recording Industry’s Big Business Mainstream.  Ian MacKaye, founder of independent record label Dischord and singer-guitarist for punk band Fugazi.

Jim Newton, deputy metro editor for politics and government at the Los Angeles Times, speaks.


National Security Versus Civil Liberties. Panelists include John Seigenthaler, state ACLU director Hedy Weinberg, and Pulitzer Prize-winning and former NBC News president Michael Gartner.


Tom Wicker. The New York Times columnist.


James Tobin. Biographer of war correspondent Ernie Pyle and the Wright brothers.

Can They Really Say That? Popular Music and the First Amendment. Nina Crowley, executive director of the Massachusetts Music Industry Coalition.


Journalism Education, the First Amendment Imperative, and the Changing Media Marketplace. Speakers include journalism professor and scholar James Carey and media critic, writer and professor Jay Rosen of New York University.


Hodding Carter III. Former newspaper publisher.


The Old News, the New News and the First Amendment. Former Chicago Tribune editor Jim Squires, Dan Hallin of the University of California, and Richard Campbell of the University of Michigan.

 A View from Washington. Nationally syndicated columns Carl Rowan.


Tom Wicker. The New York Times columnist


Political Cartooning and the First Amendment seminar and exhibit. Guest speakers include Sandy Campbell (The Tennessean), David Horsey (Seattle Post-Intellegencer), Etta Hulme (Fort Worth Star-Telegram), Sam Rawls (United Features) and Draper Hill (The Detroit News).


Symposium on the Fairness Doctrine. Guest panelists Wendell “Sonny” Rawls, Fred Graham, Jim Squires, Jerome Barron, and Rep. Jim Bates.

Symposium on the Red Scare. Pulitzer Prize-winning author Studs Terkel is among the speakers.