“I am delighted that Jon is joining the leadership team,” said Charles N. Davis, dean of Grady College. “Jon is a Russell Award-winning teacher and an internationally renowned First Amendment scholar, making him a well-rounded choice to lead our journalism department faculty and curriculum.”
Peters, an associate professor who holds an affiliate faculty position in the UGA School of Law, specializes in communication law and policy. His research focuses on internet companies and decisions made about content they host. Peters also studies how economic, political and technological changes affect modern journalism.
His published research has appeared in the Berkeley Technology Law Journal, the Harvard Law and Policy Review, and the Federal Communications Law Journal, among others.
“It’s an honor to be entrusted to serve the department and I am grateful for the opportunity,” Peters said. “I’m thankful, too, to have such a terrific model in Dr. Janice Hume. She has been an outstanding chair, and I’m relieved she’ll be just down the hallway to answer the dozens of questions I’ll have (and that’ll be only the first day).”
Peters assumes leadership for the Department of Journalism on August 1 when Hume assumes the role of associate dean for academic affairs for the College.
In addition to his teaching and research, Peters serves as the press freedom correspondent for the Columbia Journalism Review. He has written about legal issues for Esquire, The Atlantic, Slate, Wired, NBC News, and CNN, and has been interviewed on related topics by The New York Times, The Washington Post, Vanity Fair and NPR, among others.
Peters is a volunteer First Amendment lawyer for the Student Press Law Center and the ACLU. He has also testified in litigation as an expert witness on media law, and he has conducted legal seminars for dozens of news organizations, including the radio program “This American Life” and the podcast “Serial.” In 2020, Peters consulted with the Uzbekistan government as part of a United Nations program focusing on how the government can strengthen public access to the nation’s judiciary as well as public trust in it.
In 2021, Peters was honored as the Russell Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching, UGA’s highest early-career teaching honor, and was recognized in 2019 as the Journalism Teacher of the Year at Grady College.
“My colleagues are the absolute best,” Peters continues. “Every one of them has helped me—in different ways—become a better teacher, researcher, and human being. And our students are phenomenal. They’re smart and conscientious, and they’re so creative and curious. They demand your A-game as an instructor and advisor. All of which is why I’m excited about my new role.”
Peters has a B.S. in journalism from Ohio University, a J.D. from Ohio State University and a Ph.D. in journalism from the University of Missouri.