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Mcgill Symposium

2007 Visiting Journalists

Moni Basu, Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Atlanta, GA; Ochberg Fellow, Dart Center for Journalism and Trauma

Margie Mason, medical writer, Associated Press, Hanoi, VN

Dean Miller, managing editor, Idaho Falls Post-Register, Idaho Falls, ID; Nieman Fellow, Harvard University

Richard Prince, columnist, Maynard Institute for Journalism Education; foreign desk copy editor, Washington Post

Harriet A. Washington, visiting scholar, DePaul University College of Law; author, Medical Apartheid

Peter Zuckerman, reporter, Portland Oregonian, Portland, OR


Moni Basu has spent her 17 years at the Atlanta Journal-Constitution as both a reporter and an editor. She has been a page designer, news editor, front-page editor, Sunday editor and assistant international editor.

As a reporter, she has traveled extensively in her native India, reporting on the cyclones in Orissa, former President Bill Clinton's visit to the subcontinent, the conflict in Kashmir, the technology boom in Hyderabad and the devastating earthquake in Gujarat in 2001.

She began visiting Iraq in 2002 and reported on conditions under Saddam Hussein's regime as war was looming. She has made five other trips to Iraq, the last four embedded with the U.S. Army and Marine Corps.

Her passion in life is to write about vivid, provocative stories about people from all walks of life. Her intent is to touch readers' hearts with stories that linger in their minds.

She was born in Calcutta, India, in 1962 and spent much of her childhood living in India, Lebanon, Britain, Australia and the United States, where her father accepted visiting professorships at various universities. She has lived mostly in the United States since 1976.

She has a B.A. in political science and a M.A. in International Affairs, both from Florida State University. She is quite the accidental journalist.

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Margie Mason is a medical writer for The Associated Press who covers the Asia-Pacific region. She is based in Hanoi, Vietnam, but spends much of her time traveling throughout Asia.

She was named to the newly created position in 2005 and has covered a number of outbreaks, including bird flu. She has also reported on general news stories, including the 2004 Asian tsunami and several devastating earthquakes.

She also covered the 2003 emergence of SARS.

Prior to the medical writing position, Mason worked as The AP's correspondent in Vietnam from 2003 to 2005.

She also previously worked for The AP in San Francisco, where she covered the city and its large gay community. She began her career with The AP in Charleston, W.Va., where she worked as a general assignment reporter.

Mason also worked as a reporter at The Florida Times-Union in Jacksonville.

She was awarded an Asian studies fellowship at the University of Hawaii in 1999.

Mason has a degree in journalism from West Virginia University.

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Dean Miller is a Nieman Fellow at Harvard University and managing editor of the Post Register in Idaho Falls, Id., an employee-owned 25,000 morning daily about 90 miles southwest of Yellowstone National Park.

During his tenure, the Post Register has grown circulation while also winning such national awards as the 2003 National Headliners (News Series, 3d) 1998 James K. Batten Award for best civic journalism, and regional awards for the five-state northwestern region. As a reporter, he covered Idaho politics for 10 years, most of those for The Spokesman-Review of Spokane, Wa.

His freelance credits include The Washington Post, The Christian Science Monitor, Nuclear Submarine Review, U.S. News & World Report and High Country News. Miller is the co-author of "Cat Attacks: True Stories and Hard Lessons from Cougar Country." He edited the "The Insiders' Guide to Greater Yellowstone," and the final two volumes in the "Byways" series of SUV guidebooks.

Miller was lead researcher for "Every Knee Shall Bow," Jess Walters' book on the Ruby Ridge case, which was subsequently made into a television movie. At the National Writers Workshops in Nebraska, Oklahoma and Oregon, Miller has been invited to teach a special session on improvement of writing at small newspapers. In 2004, he wrote and produced an interactive public meetings training course for local government officials, which is being taught in multiple sessions paid for the by the Best in the West journalism foundation.

He has appeared on CNN, National Public Radio, PBS and Monitor Radio as an expert on western politics and western predator management.

Miller was born in Tennessee, reared in Vermont and educated at Cornell University. He is a lifelong skier, fly fisherman and whitewater boater.

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Richard Prince writes "Richard Prince's Journal-isms," a three-times-a-week column on diversity issues in the news media, for the Web site of the Maynard Institute of Journalism Education

He also works part-time as a copy editor on the foreign desk of the Washington Post, and from its 2002 founding until September, edited the Black College Wire, a news service for black college students that aims to improve college newspapers and increase their frequency.

He chairs the Diversity Committee of the National Conference of Editorial Writers, and for many years, chaired the Media Monitoring Committee of the National Association of Black Journalists. He continues to moderate the NABJ's listserve.

Prince was an editorial writer and columnist at the Democrat and Chronicle in Rochester, NY, where he worked from 1979 to 1994. There, he became a founding member of the William Monroe Trotter Group, an association of African American newspaper columnists for which he helps maintain a presence on the Web. He has also worked in investigative journalism, editing The Public i, an online news report produced by the Center for Public Integrity in Washington, D.C., from 1999 to 2001. Prior to that, in another foray into the nonprofit world, he worked at Communities In Schools, a nonprofit that helps keep kids in school.

Prince's latest service at the Washington Post follows time there as a reporter, from 1968 to 1977, when he covered local news. He is a native of New York City, having grown up there and on Long Island.

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Harriet Washington's work as a medical writer and editor focuses upon bioethics, history of medicine, African American health issues and the intersection of medicine, ethics and culture. She has worked as a columnist and contributing editor, writing principally on bioethics issues for a number of popular national magazines, such as American Legacy's Healthcare Advantage magazine, Heart & Soul, Emerge, Harvard Health Letter, Health, The Times of London Sunday Magazine, Essence, and Psychology Today. She has written or edited award-winning health education supplements and videotapes for American Legacy magazine, Black Enterprise magazine and Ebony. She has also spent seven years as a health and science editor at two metropolitan dailies and was Page One editor at USA Today.

Washington has published in academic publications as well, among them Nature, the New England Journal of Medicine, the American Journal of Public Health, the Harvard Public Health Review and the Harvard AIDS Review. She is the founding editor of The Harvard Journal of Minority Public Health and has presented her work at universities in the U.S. and abroad.

Her work has also won national awards in journalism. She has won the Harvard Journalism Fellowship for Advanced Studies Public Health in 1992-4. Her 1994 series "Health Care Reform" won the NABJ First Prize award for magazine journalism and her article "Human Guinea Pigs" in 1995 earned her the Unity award for investigative journalism. Her analysis, "The Vitamin Revolution" was selected by Health magazine as one of the best 10 health stories of 1998. In 1999, she won the Congressional Black Caucus Beacon of Light Award and the Communicator Award of Excellence.

She has received several fellowships, including the Council for the Advancement of Science Writing Traveling Fellowship, the Harvard Journalism Fellowship for Advanced Studies in Public Health, the Stanford Professional Publishing Course, and the John S. Knight Fellowship at Stanford University. Washington has also been a senior research scholar at Tuskegee University and most recently was a research fellow in medical ethics at Harvard Medical School.

Washington is the author of Parkinson's Disease, a monograph published by the Harvard Publications Group, She is also the co-author of "Health and Healing for African Americans" and the author of "Living Healthy with Hepatitis C." Her latest work, Medical Apartheid, a social history of medical research with African Americans, was published by Random House in 2007.

Washington is a visiting fellow at DePaul University College of Law. She has taught at New School University, at SUNY, and been an adjunct professor at Rochester Institute of Technology and been a teaching assistant at The Harvard School of Public Health. She lives in New York City with her husband, Ron DeBose.

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Peter Zuckerman covers county government for The Oregonian in Portland, Or. He got his first job as a journalist as the cops and courts reporter for the Post Register, a small daily in Idaho Falls, Id.

At Reed College in Portland, Or., Peter was editor in chief of the student newspaper, The Quest, which he and some friends resurrected after it shut down the year before. After graduating with a biology degree, Peter became a fellow at The Poynter Institute. He has since returned as visiting faculty.

His reporting has won dozens of awards, including the National Journalism Award, given by the Scripps Howard Foundation for the best journalism in America, and the Livingston Award, the largest all-media, general reporting prize in American journalism. He is 27.

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Read the 2007 Symposium report [pdf]