Grady students recognized as 2017 Cox-SABEW Fellows

Six Grady College students were recognized in New York City during the fall conference of the Society of American Business Editors and Writers (SABEW) through a fellowship organized and sponsored by the college’s Cox Institute for Journalism Innovation, Management and Leadership.

The students recognized as Cox-SABEW Fellows for 2017 were: Denver Ellison, Lisa Fu, Zachary Hansen, Reann Huber, Mollie Simon and Alex Soderstrom. The conference was held at the City University of New York on October 12 and 13.

This Cox-SABEW Fellowship was created to honor students who have taken the initiative to engage in business journalism through class assignments, student media and professional internships, explained Dr. Keith Herndon, director of the Cox Institute. This year’s group marked the fifth year of the partnership with SABEW, which was created in 2013 and has included 20 students to date.

“I’m incredibly thankful for the opportunity being selected as a Cox-SABEW Fellow has given me,” said Soderstrom. “After being introduced to business reporting during my summer internship at the Atlanta Business Chronicle, the SABEW conference has allowed me to delve even further into the world of business journalism.”

Fu, who interned at Fortune magazine, called the Fellowship “a fantastic opportunity for me to network, learn and to explore the field of business journalism with my peers.” Simon, who interned in business news at NPR, said the Fellowship extended her training in an important aspect of news. “Business journalism cuts across so many fields that I know it will touch any topic I have the opportunity to cover in the future,” she said.

In addition to attending the conference, the Cox-SABEW Fellows met with working reporters and editors in the newsrooms of Fortune magazine, Bloomberg and the Wall Street Journal. They also networked with Grady alumni and supporters currently working in business news and other news media organizations.

PILOT Sponsors UGA’s Grady Mobile News Lab for Fall 2017

The National Association of Broadcasters’ (NAB) PILOT innovation initiative will provide funding for VR equipment and training at the Grady College of Journalism.


NAB’s PILOT innovation initiative will sponsor the Mobile News Lab project at the University of Georgia’s Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication during Fall 2017. The sponsorship will provide the lab with new equipment for producing virtual reality content along with materials for training mobile-media best practices.

The Grady Mobile News Lab launched in Fall 2014 to provide students a forum to experiment with mobile production tools and design concepts. Students learn from Grady faculty, guest trainers and industry coaches as they engage in hands-on practice using mobile devices and applications to report and present news. This year, 18 students will work in three tracks: standard mobile video, social media and virtual reality video.

PILOT Executive Director John Clark said, “PILOT is delighted to support the work at Grady College and the Mobile News Lab students who are experimenting with VR to further develop next-generation storytelling.”

Charlotte Norsworthy and Mary Carol Butterfield brainstorm in the Grady Mobile News Lab.

Skip Pizzi, NAB’s Vice President of Technology Education and Outreach, added, “We’re proud to provide a PILOT sponsorship for this innovative program at the Grady College. It is a great opportunity to stimulate tomorrow’s journalists in learning about new tools that will help them better inform and engage their audiences.”

Ann Marie Jorgensen, a senior lab leader at Grady College, said the Mobile News Lab provides students with an environment to take risks and be creative with their story telling. “I’m grateful to work with my classmates in a fun and cutting edge way,” she said. Charlotte Norsworthy, a third-year lab leader, will incorporate her lab project into an undergraduate research thesis about virtual reality. “I am so excited that the Mobile News Lab has provided students such as myself the chance to engage in projects we can be proud of,” she said. “It gives us the opportunity to test the waters, try new things and build off of the strengths of our peers.”

The Grady Mobile News Lab is an extracurricular experiential learning opportunity presented by the college’s James M. Cox Jr. Institute for Journalism Innovation, Management and Leadership.

Keith Herndon, director of the Cox Institute, said NAB’s sponsorship is vitally important because it allows the program to expand into virtual reality, a new area of training. “Students benefit greatly when exposed to emerging technologies in a lab setting,” he said. “It opens them up to thinking about what’s next. Students are engaged when they realize they will lead the next wave of innovation.”

About NAB

The National Association of Broadcasters is the premier advocacy association for America’s broadcasters. NAB advances radio and television interests in legislative, regulatory and public affairs. Through advocacy, education and innovation, NAB enables broadcasters to best serve their communities, strengthen their businesses and seize new opportunities in the digital age. Learn more at


PILOT is a coalition of innovators, educators and advocates dedicated to advancing broadcast technology and cultivating new media opportunities. PILOT propels broadcast television and radio into the future. It provides a platform for innovation, an engine for incubation, a venue for testing new technologies and a forum for broadcaster education. Learn more at

CNN’s Richard Griffiths to be Industry Fellow at Grady’s Cox Institute

Richard T. Griffiths, vice president and senior editorial director at CNN, will serve as an Industry Fellow with the James M. Cox Jr. Institute for Journalism Innovation, Management and Leadership during the spring 2017 semester at the University of Georgia.

Griffiths, who has worked for CNN for 25 years and has announced his CNN retirement effective February 28, will be a resource for journalism students at the Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication.  CNN is sponsoring Griffiths’ role at Grady where he will guest lecture in the investigative journalism and journalism ethics and diversity courses, and will be available to students as an editor and coach on investigative reporting projects.

“I am excited to work with the students at the Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication,” said Griffiths. “In this changing media environment, it’s more important than ever to build strong foundations and share our experiences with the next generation of journalists.”

Keith Herndon, director of the Cox Institute, said having Griffiths available as resource for Grady’s journalism students will be an invaluable educational experience.

“Richard Griffiths has been a key decision maker in the news industry for many years. Bringing his exceptional background to Grady this semester gives our students an intimate opportunity to learn and reflect on how the news business works,” Herndon said.

Griffiths had been in his most recent post at CNN since 2010.  He was named editorial director in 2004 after serving a dozen years in several critical frontline positions as producer, senior producer, executive producer and senior executive producer.  Griffiths joined CNN in 1991 after 7 years as a producer with CBS News.

During an exceptional career, Griffiths led reporting and investigative projects that won multiple George F. Peabody Awards, the Overseas Press Club David Kaplan Award, two Emmys, a National Headliner Award and the Investigative Reporters and Editors Medal.

His nine planned lectures for the journalism ethics and diversity course will be open to all Grady faculty and students. They will be held in Studio 100 at 12:20 p.m. on January 27, February 3, 10, 17, March 3, 17, 31 and April 7 and 14.

Cox Institute celebrates dedication of office and journalism innovation lab

Grady College faculty, students, friends and industry partners gathered Sept. 29, 2016, to dedicate the office and journalism innovation lab of the The James M. Cox Jr. Institute for Journalism Innovation, Management and Leadership.

“It is always a great day at Grady when we can come together and celebrate another milestone in the evolution of our college,” Dean Charles Davis said. “The Cox Institute has been a virtual organization recognized for its programs, but lacking a physical space. Today, we rectify that by dedicating a facility that will be used to train Grady’s students in the art and science of entrepreneurial journalism and media leadership.”

Located inside Studio 100 on the first floor of the journalism building, the office and journalism innovation lab provide space for the growing list of programs and activities the Cox Institute hosts throughout the year.

This video about the Cox Institute was produced by student Mollie Simon
and debuted during the dedication ceremony.

University of Georgia Provost Pamela Whitten spoke at the dedication, noting the transformation of the space.

“About three years ago, your dean walked me into some very dark unused space that happens to be right here and said, ‘Doesn’t it make sense for this to be space assigned to the Grady College? I promise we will use it in ways that will benefit students,’” Whitten said. “It is really a pleasure today to see what you have done with the space.”

Whitten also commended Grady Colelge on its dedication to experiential learning opportunities.

“This college has jumped with more enthusiasm, or at least as much as any other, on our deep commitment to privileging the experience of the undergraduate students at the University of Georgia and recognizing that in 2016, so much valuable learning happens outside of the classroom,” Whitten said.

Keith Herndon, director of the Cox Institute, emphasized the institute’s goal of bringing industry and academia together.

“The Cox Institute plans on working with media companies all across the country, but we are doubling down in Georgia where there is such a hotbed of media activity,” Herndon said. “We want to make sure we have close ties to industry and have their input on the skills and training that students need.”

During the dedication, Herndon announced a new partnership with the Atlanta Press Club. The Cox Institute will be the presenting partner in the organization’s annual awards of excellence.

Herndon and Davis thanked individuals and sponsors who support the work of the Cox Institute, including the Jim Cox Jr. Foundation, which was represented at the dedication by Larry Hooks, an Atlanta attorney.

Consumer journalist Bob Sullivan also was recognized for his contributions to the institute’s growth.

“Bob joined our board of advisors two years ago and has been a fountain of ideas and connections for us,” Herndon said.

In 2013, Sullivan was a reporter for NBC’s In Plain Sight: Poverty in America documentary, which won a Peabody Award. At the time, Sullivan received a certificate for his work on the team. At the dedication ceremony, he was given the mounted medallion version of his Peabody to thank him for his work with the Cox Institute.

“Institutes like ours only prosper and grow when we have industry professionals who believe so strongly in our mission like Bob does,” Herndon said.

Privacy Conference set to explore consumer issues

Increasing news coverage of identity theft, consumer fraud and emerging technologies like facial recognition and drones make it essential for reporters to understand the intersection of technology and consumer privacy.

The University of Georgia is hosting a privacy conference Sept. 30 so that students in journalism and consumer sciences will be better informed about privacy issues and challenges. The conference is co-sponsored by the College of Family and Consumer Sciences and the James M. Cox Jr. Institute for Journalism Innovation, Management and Leadership at the Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication.

“Privacy has become an important issue for consumers and journalists,” said Keith Herndon, director of the Cox Institute. “How we think about our personal information and how we report on that information is changing due to social media and the explosion of mobile platforms.”

Peabody Award-winner Bob Sullivan, a consumer journalist, will deliver a kick-off presentation for the day-long conference, followed by a keynote from Adam Levin, author of “Swiped: How to Protect Yourself in a World Full of Scammers, Phishers, and Identity Thieves.”

“Consumers really, really care about their privacy, even if they don’t often act that way,” Sullivan said. “Nearly every story has a privacy angle today, and understanding the complex issues involved will help you skip past the obvious into the important on dozens of stories in the next year or two.”

In the afternoon, Sullivan will moderate a panel featuring Levin and Steve Rosenboro, Cox Media Group’s managing attorney and chief privacy officer.

The conference will conclude with a look at legal issues surrounding privacy, through a panel with Rosenboro, Grady College communication law professor Bill Lee and UGA Law School faculty member Sonja West.

“Finding the right balance between reporting the news and respecting personal privacy can be tricky for journalists,” West said. “I hope people come away from this panel with an understanding of what factors they should consider when deciding whether the public interest in news outweighs the individual’s right to privacy.”

Attendees will be encouraged to share their experiences from the privacy conference using the hashtag #UGAPrivacyCon.