Calvert: Man Jailed for Swearing During 911 Call: The Sad Saga of Boyd Green and a Senseless Arrest

Published: March 25th, 2015

HuffPost: Crime on March 25, 2015 published “Man Jailed for Swearing During 911 Call: The Sad Saga of Boyd Green and a Senseless Arrest” a column by Brechner Eminent Scholar in Mass Communication Clay Calvert regarding the First Amendment case Green v. Chitwood.

Category: Faculty Bylines

John Kaplan awarded international course development grant

Published: March 23rd, 2015

John Kaplan

John Kaplan

John Kaplan has been awarded a $5,000 Undergraduate Course Development Grant to design a new course entitled “International Humanitarian Communication.” The course will be a component of UF’s new International Scholars Program, an interdisciplinary campus-wide program offering all degree-seeking undergraduate students an avenue to internationalize their undergraduate experience.

The University of Florida International Center has recently assumed responsibility for implementing the Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP) “Learning without Borders: Internationalizing the Gator Nation,” a key component of UF’s SACSCOC Accreditation.  ​

Category: College News

UF alumna Sharyl Attkisson to speak at UF on March 26

Published: March 12th, 2015

Event Video

Keynote speech kicks off Freedom of Information conference

Sharyl Attkisson

Investigative journalist and author Sharyl Attkisson will speak on “The Rightful Owners of Public Information” on Thursday, March 26, at 6 p.m. in Weimer Hall’s Gannett Auditorium on the University of Florida campus.

Attkisson’s speech will kick off “Breaking Down Walls: The Fight for Open Government,” a two-day conference focused on freedom of information issues. The conference is sponsored by the Joseph L. Brechner Center for Freedom of Information, the University of Florida College of Journalism and Communications, Holland & Knight, and Thomas & LoCicero.

Immediately following Attkisson’s speech, a panel discussion will be held on “Hitting the Wall: Reports from the Frontline of the FOIA Battlefield.” Panelists include Terry Anderson, a former AP reporter who was held hostage in Beirut from 1985-91 and chronicled his days of captivity in the book “Den of Lions,” Ted Bridis, head of AP’s national investigative team in Washington, D.C., and attorney Tab Turner, who has fought a number of battles over the release of government records.

Attkisson’s speech and the panel discussion on Thursday evening are free and open to the public.

Attkisson, a 1982 telecommunication graduate of the UF College of Journalism and Communications and a College Alumna of Distinction, is author of the New York Times bestseller Stonewalled, which addresses the unseen influences of corporations and special interests on the information and images the public receives every day in the news and elsewhere.

“This FOIA conference is made possible by a generous gift from Sharyl,” said Diane McFarlin, Dean of the UF College of Journalism and Communications. “This is a critical issue for our nation, as well as for journalism and we are pleased that so many of the nation’s leading experts on freedom of information issues will be here to participate in this conversation.”

For 20 years, Attkisson was a correspondent for CBS News. In 2013, she received an Emmy Award for Outstanding Investigative Journalism for her reporting on “The Business of Congress,” which included an undercover investigation into fund-raising by Republican freshmen. She also received Emmy nominations in 2013 for “Benghazi: Dying for Security and Green Energy Going Red.” Additionally, Attkisson received a 2013 Daytime Emmy Award as part of the CBS Sunday Morning team’s entry for Outstanding Morning Program for her report: “Washington Lobbying: K-Street Behind Closed Doors.”

In 2012, Attkisson also received an Emmy for Outstanding Investigative Journalism for the “Gunwalker: Fast and Furious” story. She received the RTNDA Edward R. Murrow Award for Excellence in Investigative Reporting for the same story.

Before joining CBS, Attkisson was an anchor and reporter at WTVT in Tampa, WBNS-TV in Columbus, Ohio and WTVX-TV Ft. Pierce/West Palm Beach. She began her broadcast journalism career in 1982 as a reporter at WUFT-TV, the PBS station at the University of Florida. In 1997, she received the University’s Alumna of Outstanding Achievement Award honoring 47 women who have attended the University since its opening.

For those interested in attending the conference, please email or call the Brechner Center at (352)392-2273. For more information on the conference, visit

New certificate program positions College as leader in fundraising education

Published: March 10th, 2015

Fundraising class
The University of Florida College of Journalism and Communications is launching an innovative Graduate Certificate Program in Fundraising Management that will give graduate students and local fundraisers the opportunity to hone their fundraising knowledge and skills in an academic environment.

The nine-credit program began this spring semester with one course, but program coordinator Kathleen Kelly, a UF public relations professor and leading scholar in fundraising, will launch the entire program in fall 2015.

The certificate program is unique in the United States. Most educational fundraising programs are taught in extension schools of universities, and their courses are noncredit and staffed by part-time practitioner adjuncts. The UF program, in contrast, is part of the College of Journalism and Communications and its courses are for-credit at the graduate level and taught by full-time graduate faculty.

It is also likely the first fundraising program to be co-sponsored by a university-affiliated foundation, the University of Florida Foundation.

The certificate comes at a time when fundraising is one of the highest-paying jobs in the nonprofit sector. According to the Association of Fundraising Professionals, U.S. fundraisers earned an average salary of more than $75,000 in 2013.

“A high demand exists for trained fundraisers, but there’s still a shortage,” Kelly said. “It’s not an occupation talked about by guidance counselors or academic advisers, so most college students don’t realize fundraising is a viable and rewarding career.”

In the program, students will learn the fundamentals and tactics of fundraising from full-time faculty. The certificate can be earned in as little as two semesters.

“And there’s one more perk,” said Kelly. “Those who complete the certificate will be given an exploratory interview with the UF Foundation for available employment opportunities.”

For more information, contact Kathleen Kelly at or 352-392-9359. Also visit the Graduate Certificate in Fundraising Management’s website,

Category: College News

Final day of frank

Published: March 9th, 2015

After spending three days in Gainesville, it was time for the franksters to head home.

frank 2015 ended Friday afternoon following two more sessions of speakers and a closing ceremony, where attendees watched a recap video that compiled images from the week’s events.

As a gathering for a community of public interest communicators dedicated to using strategic communications to drive change, frank is a fairly new event. This was it’s second year – frank: amplified.

Bobby Jones, vice president at Octagon Access, said that was a part of the beginning stages, when frank was just an idea. He said he was interested in being involved because he believes in communicating for the greater good.

From year one to year two, Jones said he has seen frank grow in terms of diversity and that there was a greater range of perspectives this year. He said he feels it’s important to continue the growth and figure out a way to keep the conversations going throughout the year.

Coming from the Knight Foundation, a non-profit foundation, Robertson Adams said coming to frank gave him a new perspective. He said that he was able to see how the different organizations actually utilize communications and tactics to get messages to their audiences.

Mallary Tenore, the managing director of Images & Voices of Hope, said that coming from a small non-profit, it was nice to be able to speak with other organizations to see what kinds of ideas work.

Many people said that the overall format of frank was refreshing.

Lisa Colton, the chief learning officer from See 3 Communications, said that any assumption she had for what a conference was like was challenged. She finds frank to be playful, entertaining, yet stimulating.

Meanwhile, Adams said he found the innovative format to be conducive to having a personal experience.

“It feels more like a comedy club than any kind of seminar that I’ve been to.”

Category: College News

Ted Spiker named Journalism chair

Published: March 9th, 2015

Ted-Spiker-200x300The University of Florida College of Journalism and Communications has named Ted Spiker chair of the Department of Journalism, effective immediately, Dean Diane McFarlin announced Friday. He has been interim chair since last fall.

Spiker brings both professional experience and academic discipline to this role. He joined the College’s faculty in 2001 after working at several magazines, including Men’s Health. He earned his master’s degree from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism and his bachelor’s degree from the University of Delaware.

His new book, “Down Size: Twelve Truths for Turning Pants-Splitting Frustration into Pants-Fitting Success,” is garnering great reviews and Spiker has appeared on several national shows discussing his ideas. He has also co-authored another dozen books, including the YOU: The Owner’s Manual series, and his work has been published in such places as Outside, O The Oprah Magazine, Fortune, Reader’s Digest, Runner’s World,, and many others. In addition, Spiker has done scholarly research on magazine covers and has served as head of the Magazine Division of AEJMC.

His many accomplishments at CJC include leading the interdepartmental faculty task force that redesigned our undergraduate curriculum to put a greater emphasis on digital and take a more consolidated approach with core courses. This process was completed in record time and was approved readily by the University Curriculum Committee.


Category: College News

Former Gainesville resident establishes endowed fund to inspire excellence

Published: March 9th, 2015

Gale King grew up attending the Homecoming parades and dreaming of being a Gator

Gale King

Gale King

University of Florida alumna Gale King has pledged $1 million to the university to establish an endowed fund for excellence that will not only inspire future students but may also provide support for faculty, programs and other related initiatives at the university.

The primary purpose of the fund is to provide scholarships for first-generation, academically exceptional students who, like King, are from families with modest incomes. Herself a graduate of UF’s College of Journalism and Communications, King has expressed that initial preference be given to students pursuing a degree in journalism and communications.

“My life’s trajectory changed when I attended the university and earned my degrees,” said King, executive vice president and chief administrative officer at Nationwide Mutual Insurance Co. “I know without a doubt that an education opens doors, and the experiences and exposures of a university environment develop you in magnificent ways. I also know what it is like to dream and to not have the resources to make the dream come true.

“I have been tremendously blessed, and it my hope is that I can in someway lift others and make it a little easier for them to achieve their dreams and to become all that their hard work, commitment and dedication will enable,” King added. “An education changes you in powerful ways and provides an opportunity for you to make a difference – not only in your chosen career, but for family, community and the world.”

King and her brother were raised by their grandmother, and King credits her for every good thing that has happened in her life. King earned bachelor’s degree in journalism in 1983 and a master’s in public administration in 1986.

King’s career at Nationwide began in 1983 as a claims adjuster in Gainesville. She ascended to the highest levels of leadership in Nationwide’s headquarters in Columbus, Ohio, becoming one of the most successful Gator alumni and women in corporate America. She has been named to Ebony’s Power 100, Black Enterprise Magazine’s “100 Most Powerful Executives in Corporate America,” Savoy Magazine’s “Most Influential Blacks in Corporate America,” and the YWCA Woman of Achievement. At Nationwide, King has responsibility for the company’s human resources strategies for its 33,000 associates, corporate real estate, aviation and security.

In 2007, King also established a scholarship at Santa Fe College in the names of her grandmother and mother. She credits her grandmother’s influence for her career success and altruism.

“I observed what an amazing individual she was in terms of bringing two children into her home and raising them. I saw what happens when someone decides to allow their life to be used for good,” King said of her grandmother.

Diane McFarlin, dean of UF’s College of Journalism and Communications, said King’s decision to create the fund for excellence reflects her desire to help others reach their potential.

“Gale is a giving person in every respect. She gives of her time, her resources and especially of herself. She succeeded against tremendous odds and once she achieved success, she made it her mission to ensure that others coming up behind her would have similar opportunities,” McFarlin said. “Gale’s gift to the University of Florida is going to make it possible for young Gale Kings to advance in life. She is providing a hand-up, a bridge, for students who might drop out otherwise.”

In 2013, King joined the UF Foundation Board of Directors and serves as chair of the foundation’s Talent Management Advisory Council.

“When I see Gale’s success, I’m elevated by the fact that she did it through this great combination of commitment and effort and faith in herself. She’s resolute. She obviously has a core sense of deep values. She’s got a deep sense of personal responsibility,” UF Foundation Chairman Scott Hawkins said. “Her whole story is about improvement and growth.”

The University of Florida is one of the nation’s most comprehensive universities. It has a long history of established programs in international education, research and service, and is one of only 17 public, land-grant universities that belong to the prestigious Association of American Universities.

The College of Journalism and Communications is recognized as one of the best programs in the United States. It offers bachelor’s degrees in advertising, journalism, public relations and telecommunications, and enrolls approximately 2,300 undergraduates. Master’s and doctoral degrees are offered in mass communications.

Photo Credit: Terry Gilliam/Nationwide Mutual Insurance Co.

In the news

Category: College News

Anderson receives Zenger Award—25 years later

Published: March 4th, 2015

Terry Anderson

Terry Anderson

Terry Anderson, an adjunct professor at the University of Florida College of Journalism and Communications, received a belated award last week during a trip to Arizona. In 1990 while still a captive in Beirut, the University of Arizona awarded Anderson the John Peter and Anna Catherine Zenger Award. Last week in a surprise ceremony, he finally received the award.

Anderson was in Arizona to speak on a panel for Arizona Public Media’s “AZ Week.”  He joined the parents of slain freelancer James Foley to discuss “American Journalists Abroad Face Increasing Peril.”

Anderson, a former AP reporter who was held hostage in Beirut from 1985-91 and chronicled his days of captivity in the book “Den of Lions,” is teaching international journalism in the College.

Since 1954, the University of Arizona journalism program has awarded the John Peter and Anna Catherine Zenger Award to a journalist who fights for freedom of the press and the people’s right to know.

It is named for a husband and wife team of pioneering journalists. John Peter Zenger was editor of the New York Weekly Journal in 1734 when he was jailed by British colonial authorities on charges of seditious libel. He had criticized the corrupt administration of New York’s governor, William Cosby. While Zenger was imprisoned, his wife, Anna Catherine Zenger, continued to publish the newspaper. Zenger’s subsequent trial and acquittal is considered a landmark case in the history of freedom of the press, helping to lay the foundation for the First Amendment.  Past Zenger Award winners include Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein, Walter Cronkite and Bill Moyers.

To view the panel discussion Anderson participated in, visit:

Category: College News

In memory of Hugh Cunningham

Published: March 3rd, 2015

Hugh Cunningham

Hugh Cunningham

The College has lost a dear friend and colleague who touched the lives of many of our CJC alumni. Hugh Cunningham passed away on Friday, Feb. 27, in Gainesville. He was 93.

In 1955, Hugh was recruited by Rae Weimer to join the budding School of Journalism at UF, where Weimer’s goal was to build the College through experience by hiring practicing journalists. As a professor at the University, Cunningham led groundbreaking programs providing practical and hands-on experience for UF journalism students at the Gainesville Sun and St. Petersburg Times, and graduates he mentored became recognized journalists.  He worked alongside such CJC legends as John Paul Jones Jr., H.G. “Buddy” Davis, Jack Detweiler, Jon Roosenraad, Jean Chance and Jo Anne Smith.

During the latter part of Hugh’s 35 years at UF he served as the university’s director of communications. On his 80th birthday, the University of Florida established the Hugh W. Cunningham Professorship of Journalism Excellence with contributions from former students and others.  Master Lecturer Mike Foley holds that professorship today.

Last Friday Jean Chance shared one of her favorite stories about Hugh: She said that when Rae Weimer was in the hospital just before he died, Hugh went there every day and read the newspaper to Rae. This is just one example of how generous Hugh was with both students and colleagues.

Hugh is predeceased by his wife of 57 years Eleanor Hendrix Cunningham, daughter Kay Puder and grandson Casey Puder of Gainesville, as well as by his brother William A. Cunningham of Granbury Texas. He is survived by sons Rob (and Amy) and Chuck (and Aries); by granddaughters Allison (Amador), Wendy, and Alyx; by three great-granddaughters; and by Nicole Haynes, loving caregiver to him, his wife and their daughter for the past eight years.

A memorial service will be held at Faith Presbyterian Church (5916 NW 39th Avenue Gainesville, FL 32606) on Thursday, March 5, 2015 at 4:00 p.m. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to the Community Presbyterian Church (20098 North US Highway 441 P.O. Box 616 McIntosh, FL 32664) or to Faith Presbyterian Church. Interment will occur a day prior to the memorial service and will be private to family. Arrangements are in the care of Forest Meadows Funeral Home. An online guestbook is available for condolences at

To see the Gainesville Sun’s article on Hugh’s legacy, go to:

Category: College News

frank gathering takes over downtown with street fair and concert

Published: February 27th, 2015

The Preservation Hall Jazz Band performs at Bo Diddley Community Plaza in downtown Gainesville. (Photo by Will England)

The Preservation Hall Jazz Band performs at Bo Diddley Community Plaza in downtown Gainesville. (Photo by Will England)

To end a day filled with speakers, frank invited the Gainesville community to join it and its attendees for night of food, fun and live music.

On Thursday evening, more than 3,000 people gathered in Bo Diddley Downtown Community Plaza for a street fair to hear music from opening act Flat Land and headline performer Preservation Hall Jazz Band, while enjoying meals from local food trucks.

Opening the gathering up to the community was something that attendee Murray Devine said he had never seen at another conference, which is a sentiment that was shared by other franksters.

Kristen King a senior account executive at Fenton, said that it gave her a chance to connect with people outside the frank community and actually experience the town.

“I think it’s great we are getting a little bit of the local Gainesville flavor,” she said.

Meanwhile, her coworker, Jamie Joyce agreed and said that he loved that frank has been spread throughout downtown and that he has been able to get a vibe for the local community because of it.

Devine, the Communications Project Manager at Community Foundation of Sarasota County, also said that within frank he found a community. Only knowing one person before he came, he said that being a part of a Krewe has allowed him to meet and connect with more people than he typically would have at a larger conference.

As Anat Shenker-Osirio said, with so many speakers on stage for a limited period of time, there isn’t a chance to have a robust discussion with the expert while he or she presents his or her topic. However, she had that the way frank is set up, it gives people a lot of time together to have one-on-one conversations. She said that she found having a gathering where people are on the same schedule listening to the same things, allows for more discussion during the breaks.

Having the opportunity to learn from colleagues in the public interest communications field and gather wisdom from other communicators is why Chuck Alexander, from Burness Communications, said he came to frank this year.

He said that the sessions have been incredible and that he is inspired with a renewed energy by the potential he sees that communicators have to change the world.

For Bobby Jones, vice president at Octagon Access, having the opportunity to share, and to listen to others is one of the aspects he enjoys most about frank. He said he finds that the things people are doing are so interesting – even foreign in some ways – and that he finds it fascinating to hear about the different things that people are dedicating their lives to.

Category: College News