Journalist and teacher with expertise in reporting, research, writing, digital publishing, group facilitation, new ventures, international training and interactive community building

Experience & Activities

Consulting editor, National Catholic Reporter2019-

Working with news and business-side colleagues at NCR to develop more comprehensive coverage of and services for Catholic and interfaith groups addressing the climate crisis.

Clerk of the board of the Beacon Hill Friends House 2018-2019

After living in the house 2013-2015, joined the board in 2016. Clerked personnel committee 2016-2018 and served as presiding clerk (chair) of the board June 2018 to June 2019.

Member of pastoral council, The Paulist Center 2015-present

Part of the group helping lead this non-geographic Catholic church in downtown Boston with the tagline of “All are welcome!”

Freelance writer 2013-

Published articles In Boston Globe, National Catholic Reporter, National Geographic, among others

blogger, A Year in a Room and Across the Hall 2013-
A Year in a Room recounts the two years that my wife & I lived at the Beacon Hill Friends House; Across the Hall is an ongoing account of living across the hall from one of our daughters and her family near Coolidge Corner.

adjunct faculty, Northeastern University 2015-2016

Taught media ethics to graduate and undergraduate students 2015-2016. Course description, syllabus, class slides, etc.:

affiliate faculty, The Poynter Institute 2012-2017

Took a buyout from Poynter at the end of 2011, but continued, as an affiliate faculty member, to work in a various Poynter programs. Led a 12-week blended learning program for 40 participants in Hungary, Poland, Czech Republic and Slovakia in 2012 on the topic of covering world development issues. Program included eLearning as well in-person training in each of the countries.

guest faculty, Fachhochschule für Management & Kommunikation, Vienna, Austria 2012-2015

Taught masters-level seminars in entrepreneurial journalism at Vienna’s University of Applied Sciences.

entrepreneurial work 2012-2015

Co-founded in February 2012 a community-based news start-up (Detroit143) focused on tracking the transformation of the city’s 143 square miles of land and water. Here’s the final report on the project.

leader of entrepreneurial journalism and international programs, The Poynter Institute 2009-2011

Led the creation and execution of entrepreneurial journalism program at Poynter, funded by

the Ford Foundation. Program included reporting and writing (

research ( and teaching. Also directed Poynter’s work with international journalists in Poynter programs and Poynter faculty teaching in Africa, Europe, South America and

Asia. In recent years, I’ve taught in South Africa, Austria, Poland, Denmark, Colombia, China and India.

juror, The Pulitzer Prizes in Journalism 2002-2003

Served on the public service jury in 2002 (prize awarded to The New York Times) and the editorial cartooning jury in 2003 (prize awarded to David Horsey of Seattle Post-Intelligencer)

director of Poynter Online & related positions, The Poynter Institute 1999-2009

Led the creation of Poynter Online (, a global resource for journalists and journalism educators that includes news about news as well as analysis and deconstruction of best practices. Directed marketing & publications, including annual publication of Best Newspaper Writing book, quarterly Poynter Report & NYTimes best-seller collection of newspaper front pages, September 11,2001.

editor and director of development, Universal New Media 1995-1999

Helped lead creation of digital arm of Universal Press Syndicate & Andrews McMeel Publishing. Change leadership work with creators, editors and colleagues. Based in Silicon Valley with periodic stints at KC headquarters.

director of electronic publishing, San Jose Mercury News 1992-1995

Led the creation of one of the first newspapers to be published online. (Some of the history recounted here: Served on the newspaper’s operating committee and led the introduction of digital publishing to the company’s news and advertising departments.

various positions at the Detroit Free Press and Knight Ridder 1972-1985 & 1987-1992

Reporting positions included general assignment, city hall bureau chief, Washington correspondent and European correspondent (based in Vienna). Editing roles included city editor, assistant managing editor for investigations and assistant to the executive editor. Winner of Distinguished Service in Journalism medal awarded by the Society of Professional Journalists (1975) and finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in special local reporting (1976).

bureau chief, TIME magazine 1985-1987

Led coverage of the auto industry as well as political and general news in several-state region.


Earn Your Own Trust, Roll Your Own Ethics (w/ Bob Steele) (see p.63) 2005-2010

Clues in the Rubble: A User-First Framework for Sustaining Local News (


Sagan Fellow at Shorenstein Center on Press & Politics, Kennedy School at Harvard University 2009

B.A., theology, magna cum laude, University of Notre Dame 1967-1971


New York Times Washington bureau 1971-1972

St. Petersburg Times 1970

The Day (New London, Ct.) 1965-1969

volunteer work

Board member of the National Catholic Reporter (independent weekly) 1998-2004

Board member of Gallivan Program in Journalism & Democracy, University of Notre Dame 2004-2012

Co-director of parish youth group 2005-2007