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University of Wisconsin–Madison

Advisory Board

The founding advisory board for the Center for Journalism Ethics was established February, 2010. The board meets annually to review center activities, provide advice and counsel, and assist the director in furthering the Center’s mission. A complete list of former board members can be found here.

J. Peter Burgess

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J. Peter Burgess is Professor of Philosophy at the Ecole Normale Supérieure in Paris where he studies the relationship between culture, technology, politics and values.  Burgess grew up in the U.S. Midwest and earned degrees from the Universities of Colorado, Iowa, and Chicago, and Columbia University, then continued graduate studies in Germany and France before settling in Norway to raise a family. He moved to Paris in 2016 to take his current post.

Jamie Farnsworth Finn

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Jamie Farnsworth Finn is a multimedia journalist turned content strategist and digital consultant. She is an adjunct instructor at the University of Delaware’s M.A. in Strategic Communication program, and Head of Content for M.T. Deco, a multidisciplinary digital agency. She is a freelance writer on education for the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, and is a digital communications consultant for Making Caring Common, a project within the Harvard Graduate School of Education.

Finn has nearly 13 years’ experience at network news organizations, where she most recently led the content and digital strategy for NBC News’ education division. Finn also produced multiple live broadcasts on education while simultaneously spear-heading digital engagement to enhance and maintain the broadcasts’ reach.

Prior to honing her digital chops, Finn was a producer at NBC News and CBS News where she covered a range of stories from politics to feature stories and everything in between. Her range of experience includes traveling as part of then President-elect Obama’s press corps, months-long investigation into sexual assault in the military, and profiling programs for incarcerated parents.

She started her career as a page at CBS News and worked her way up to producing for the CBS Evening News with Katie Couric before moving to NBC News to work on Rock Center with Brian Williams, a newsmagazine show. She earned her B.A. in journalism and women’s studies from the University of Wisconsin–Madison. Finn lives in Manhattan with her husband and young children.

Ellen Foley

Ellen Foley is a University of Wisconsin-Madison alumna, an award-winning journalist, an accomplished digital media advisor and a strategic communications corporate executive. She is president of Ellen Foley Ink, a communications consulting company specializing in strategic marketing. Foley worked as Senior Vice President of Corporate Communications at WPS Health Solutions until 2017. She wove an interest in journalism and strategic communications ethics throughout her 33-year career as a daily journalist, a stint leading an election campaign and in her job in the health insurance industry. Foley specializes in complex and community-focused strategic work. Her efforts as editor-in-chief at the Wisconsin State Journal earned the journalists there many awards for online and print projects, including a Pulitzer Prize finalist honor in 2008. In 1988, Foley founded the Violence Against Women Coalition in Minneapolis-St. Paul after the tragic murder of her sister, Mary. The coalition successfully advocated for legislative change of the penalties for sexual predators. In Madison, Foley volunteers as a marketing advisor at Reach Dane, one of the area’s highly regarded providers of early education teaching, including Head Start. She earned a master’s in journalism and a bachelor’s degree in political science, both at UW-Madison.

Sam Freedman

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Samuel G. Freedman is an award-winning author, columnist, and professor. A former columnist for The New York Times and a professor at Columbia University, he is the author of the nine acclaimed books, and recently completed his tenth, which is about Hubert Humphrey, Civil Rights, and the 1948 Democratic convention. Entitled Into the Bright Sunshine: Young Hubert Humphrey and the Fight for Civil Rights, it will be published in July 2023 by Oxford University Press.

A tenured professor at the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism, Freedman was named the nation’s outstanding journalism educator in 1997 by the Society of Professional Journalists. In 2012, he received Columbia University’s coveted Presidential Award for Outstanding Teaching. Freedman’s class in book-writing has developed more than 100 authors, editors, and agents, and it has been featured in Publishers Weekly and the Christian Science Monitor.  Freedman holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism and history from UW-Madison. He lives in New York with his wife, Christia Chana Blomquist, whom he met when both were students at UW.


Robert Gebeloff

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Robert Gebeloff is a projects reporter at The New York Times specializing in data journalism. He works on stories that blend traditional reporting with investigative and social science techniques. His reporting on how the coronavirus pandemic exacerbated racial disparities was part of the coverage awarded the 2021 Pulitzer Prize for Public Service, and he has twice been a Pulitzer finalist for coverage of the legal system. He teaches data journalism as an adjunct professor at Columbia University. Before joining The Times in 2008, he worked at regional newspapers in New Jersey and Michigan and graduated from UW-Madison in 1991 with degrees in journalism and political science

Jill Geisler

Jill Geisler is the Bill Plante Chair in Leadership and Media Integrity at Loyola University Chicago. Geisler teaches and coaches newsroom leaders worldwide. She also serves as the Freedom Forum Institute Fellow in Women’s Leadership, heading its Power Shift Project, which helps media organizations build cultures free of harassment, discrimination and incivility. Prior to accepting the Loyola chair, she spent 16 years guiding the leadership and management programs of the Poynter Institute. Her first career was in broadcast journalism as a reporter and anchor, and one of the first female TV news directors in the United States at WITI-TV in Milwaukee. She is the author of the book “Work Happy: What Great Bosses Know” and writes a management column for the National Press Club Journalism Institute. Geisler has been inducted into multiple media halls of fame. She holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism from UW–Madison and a masters in leadership studies from Duquesne University.

Mike Gousha

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Mike Gousha serves as senior advisor in law and public policy at Marquette University Law School. An award-winning journalist, Gousha served as distinguished fellow in law and public policy from 2007 to 2021, and helped lead efforts to create the Law School’s Lubar Center for Public Policy Research and Civic Education. Gousha spent 25 years as anchor and reporter for WTMJ-TV in Milwaukee and 11 years as a political analyst for WISN-TV, where he hosted the statewide public affairs program UpFront with Mike Gousha. He has moderated numerous televised political debates in Wisconsin, including the final debate of Wisconsin’s historic 2012 recall election for governor. Gousha is also the co-producer of a PBS documentary that aired nationally in 2020, recounting the nearly half-century that Milwaukee was led by socialist mayors.

Gousha is a member of the Milwaukee Press Club Hall of Fame, as well as the Wisconsin Broadcasters Hall of Fame. He received the Associated Press’ Carol Brewer Award for long-term contributions to broadcast journalism in Wisconsin and the University of Wisconsin Journalism School’s Distinguished Public Service Award. Gousha also is the recipient of the United Community Center’s Friends of the Hispanic Community Award and the Milwaukee Urban League’s Whitney M. Young, Jr. Legacy Award. He graduated from UW-Madison with a degree in journalism.

Katie Harbath

Katie Harbath is a global leader at the intersection of elections, democracy, civic, and tech. She is the founder and CEO of Anchor Change, a civic tech strategies firm focused on developing solutions at the intersection of tech, policy, and business focusing on global issues related to democracy, elections, and civic engagement online. Prior to starting her own firm she was a public policy director at Facebook where, over the course of ten years, she was credited with building out and leading a 30-person global team responsible for managing elections. She also played a significant role in building another team of over 30 people that works to get governments and elected officials around the world – at the local, regional, and national levels – to use Facebook and Instagram as a way to connect and engage with constituents.

This work included managing the global elections strategy across the company by working closely with product teams to develop and deploy civic engagement and election integrity products including political ads transparency features; developing and executing policies around elections; building the teams that support the government, political, and advocacy partners; working with policymakers on shaping the regulation of elections online, and serving as a spokesperson for the company about these issues. Katie was involved in this work in major elections for every country around the globe including the United States, India, Brazil, United Kingdom, European Union, Canada, Philippines, and Mexico.

Prior to Facebook, Katie held senior strategic digital roles at the Republican National Committee, the National Republican Senatorial Committee, DCI Group and multiple campaigns. Katie is on the boards of the National Conference on Citizenship, Democracy Works and the Center for Journalism Ethics at UW–Madison. She was named one of the top 50 people to watch in politics by Politico in 2014 and a Rising Star by Campaigns and Elections magazine in 2009. Katie holds a BA in journalism and political science from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. 

Phil Haslanger

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Phil Haslanger has straddled the worlds of skepticism and belief in two careers. A UW–Madison grad (BA in sociology in 1971, MA in journalism in 1973), he worked at The Capital Times from 1973 to 2008 as a reporter, city editor, editorial page editor and managing editor.

During his time on the editorial page, he served as president in 2002 of what was then the National Conference of Editorial Writers. More recently, he was on the board of the Religion News Service and served as president in 2016. He now chairs their advisory council. He was named to the Wisconsin Newspaper Association Hall of Fame in 2021 and was named a distinguished alumni of the UW-Madison School of Journalism and Mass Communications in 2022.

During the 2000s, he began exploring a career in ministry and was ordained in 2007 as a minister in the United Church of Christ. He served as a pastor at Memorial UCC in Fitchburg until retiring in 2017. Then he served for about two years as a parish associate at Christ Presbyterian Church in Madison, retiring again in 2024. He serves on the boards of JustDane and Pres House. He is married to Ellen Reuter and has two sons and two daughters and seven grandchildren

Neil Heinen

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Neil Heinen is the former Editorial Director for WISC TV and Madison Magazine. Heinen has served on the Board of Directors of the Association of Opinion Journalists (formerly the National Conference of Editorial Writers) including serving as president in 2007, and is a past president of the AOJ Foundation. He received the organization’s highest honor of Life Membership in 2013. He is a member of the clinical faculty of the Kettering Foundation, and for 15 years was a member of the adjunct faculty of Edgewood College.

Heinen has won numerous professional and community awards including the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr., Humanitarian Award, Robert H. Wills Freedom of Information Award, the Urban League of Greater Madison Community Champion President’s Award, The Charles Hamilton Houston Institute Difference Maker Award and the National Association for Community Leadership Distinguished Leadership Award. He was born in Milwaukee in 1951, is the oldest of eleven children, and is a graduate of Marquette University High School in Milwaukee and the University of Wisconsin–Madison. He lives in Madison with his wife Nancy, and their dog Macaroon.

Carrie Johnson

Carrie Johnson is a Justice Correspondent for the Washington Desk. She covers a wide variety of stories about justice issues, law enforcement and legal affairs for NPR’s flagship programs Morning Edition and All Things Considered. During the 2019-2020 academic year, she will be a Nieman Foundation Fellow at Harvard University. Prior to coming to NPR in 2010, Johnson worked at the Washington Post for 10 years, when she closely observed the FBI, the Justice Department and criminal trials of the former leaders of Enron, HealthSouth and Tyco. Earlier in her career, she wrote about courts for the weekly publication Legal Times. Her work has been honored with awards from the Robert F. Kennedy Center for Justice and Human Rights, the Society for Professional Journalists and the Society of American Business Editors and Writers. She has been a finalist for the Loeb award for financial journalism and for the Pulitzer Prize in breaking news for team coverage of the massacre at Fort Hood, Texas. Johnson is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Madison and Benedictine University in Illinois.

Martin Kaiser

Marty Kaiser is the first Howard Distinguished Visiting Fellow at the University of Maryland Phillip Merrill College of Journalism, where he is helping to launch the new Howard Center for Investigative Journalism. Kaiser was Editor/Sr. Vice President of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel from 1997 to 2015. Under his leadership, the Journal Sentinel earned a national reputation for its journalism and digital innovation. Kaiser’s newsroom won three Pulitzer Prizes and was honored as a finalist six other times. In 2009, Editor & Publisher magazine named Kaiser Editor of the Year. He was  president of the American Society of News Editors 2009-2010. In addition to the Journal Sentinel, he worked for the Baltimore Sun, Chicago Sun-Times and Florida newspapers in Sarasota and Clearwater. He earned his bachelors at The George Washington University and completed the Northwestern University Kellogg Graduate School of Management Executive Program.

John Lansing

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John F. Lansing is a veteran media executive and journalist who has spent decades leading complex, award winning media companies. He is passionate about the role of free and independent journalism in a healthy democracy. Recently retired after almost five years as President and CEO of NPR, Lansing oversaw one of the country’s most iconic news organizations.

He has a long list of media leadership positions, including CEO of the U.S. Agency for Global Media and president and CEO of the Cable & Telecommunications Association for Marketing.

Lansing spent almost 20 years working at the E.W. Scripps Company, including nine years as President of Scripps Networks Interactive, the company’s cable network division after managing the company’s ten broadcast stations. He had local leadership roles at the Scripps ABC stations in Detroit, (WXYZ) and Cleveland (WEWS).

Lansing served for several years as a visiting faculty member at the Poynter Institute for Media Studies, and as a member of the National Board of Advisors of George Washington University’s School of Media & Public Affairs in Washington DC. He was recently named a senior fellow at the USC Annenberg Center on Communications and Leadership Policy in Washington.

He is a graduate of Bellarmine University in Louisville and is married to Jean Rausch Lansing, a Madison native and a 1991 cum laude graduate of the University of Wisconsin Law School.  The couple have four adult children.

Alexandria Mack

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Alexandria Mack is an award-winning storyteller based in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. In her current work, she helps spread the stories of Northwestern Mutual Foundation’s philanthropic efforts across the city.  Previously, she produced segments for Milwaukee PBS’ legacy program “Black Nouveau” that shares stories of trials and triumphs African-Americans face in the city. She also is the former co-host of the station’s first podcast “Speaking Of…” which was recognized with a 2022 Public Media Award. Alexandria’s storytelling has been recognized by the National Association of Black Journalists, Chicago/Midwest Emmys and Milwaukee Press Club. Prior to her time at Milwaukee PBS, she earned a bachelor’s in journalism from UW-Madison as well as a master’s degree in journalism from the University of Southern California. When she’s not lost in a new book or podcast, you can find “Lexi” making memories with her husband and daughter.

Renee Moe

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Renee Moe is President and CEO of United Way of Dane County, a leader in the worldwide United Way network and across the nonprofit sector. A military kid who grew up on three continents, Renee has a JBA in Journalism and Mandarin Chinese, and an MBA from UW–Madison. She has been recognized with the YWCA Woman of Distinction Award, Wisconsin Women of Color Network Power of Unity Award, Brava Woman 2 Watch, UW Business School 8 Under 40 and served as President of Downtown Madison Rotary.

United Way’s mission is to unite the community to create measurable results and change lives, mobilizing the community’s caring power to stabilize and empower families. Through significant community listening and understanding community data, United Way prioritizes education, financial stability, health and civic engagement as the building blocks of a stable life and thriving Dane County. Renee and United Way believe in the potential that lies within all people, and are committed to fostering environments that accelerate belief in and empowerment of that potential. A committed advocate for change, Renee lives in Madison with husband Jason Salus and their children Nick and Nora.

Jonathan O’Connell

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Jonathan O’Connell is a reporter at The Washington Post, where he works on business investigations. Since joining the Post in 2010, he has covered commercial real estate, economic development, federal stimulus efforts during the covid pandemic and President Donald Trump’s real estate business.

His work has won awards from the Society for Professional Journalists and the National Association of Real Estate Editors. He is a two-time finalist for the Gerald Loeb Awards for business journalism. He is a 2001 graduate of UW–Madison where he majored in journalism and English. Previously he worked for business publications in Connecticut and in Virginia, and at the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, in its Washington bureau. He lives in Washington, D.C.

Nick Penzenstadler

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Nick Penzenstadler is an investigative reporter at USA TODAY where he works on national investigations. He has piloted reporting collaborations at USA TODAY with ProPublica, The Center for Public Integrity, Tegna broadcasting and Kaiser Health News. He has appeared on CNN, MSNBC, NBC and NPR promoting his work.

Before joining USA TODAY, he was a city hall reporter at The Post-Crescent in Appleton, Wis. He served as the state’s correspondent for USA TODAY’s national news desk. Previously, he worked as a military and general assignment reporter at the Rapid City Journal in South Dakota. Penzenstadler graduated from UW–Madison in 2010 with with a B.S. from the School of Journalism and Mass Communication and Department of Political Science. He served as a reporter, editor and publisher at The Badger Herald from 2006-2010. He lives in New Berlin, Wisconsin with his wife Kate and twin daughters.

Manu Raju

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Manu Raju is CNN’s chief congressional correspondent, covering Capitol Hill and campaign politics. Raju is a veteran reporter in Washington, having previously served as a top Capitol Hill correspondent at Politico for seven years. Prior to his time at Politico, Raju reported for The Hill newspaper, Congressional Quarterly and Inside Washington Publishers. He has long been a frequent guest on political talk shows on TV and radio.

Raju has won multiple journalism awards for his reporting on the major battles consuming Washington and his coverage of campaign politics. In 2012, Raju was part of a team of four reporters who won the White House Correspondents Association’s prestigious Merriman Smith award for presidential reporting under deadline pressure for their coverage of the debt ceiling crisis. In 2015, Raju also was awarded first prize by the Society of Professional Journalists in D.C. for beat coverage of the 2014 midterm elections, and a Folio: Eddie Award for a feature profile on Senator Elizabeth Warren. In 2017, Raju won the Joan Shorenstein Barone award, given annually for best congressional reporting by the Radio and Television Correspondent Association. Raju got his start in media working at the student newspaper The Badger Herald at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, his alma mater.

Chuck Stokes

Chuck Stokes is the editorial/public affairs director for WXYZ-TV/Channel 7 in Detroit, Michigan. Additionally, he serves as moderator and producer of Spotlight on the News, Michigan’s longest-running weekly news and public affairs show. Before he became Channel 7’s editorial/public affairs director, Stokes worked as the station’s executive producer of special projects in news. And prior to joining WXYZ-TV, Stokes was employed at WTVF-TV in Nashville, Tennessee, as a producer and on-air reporter. Stokes has accumulated a long list of personal awards and achievements including 12 Emmys for editorial reporting and two Emmys for documentary reporting. In 2001, Stokes received the “The Lifetime Achievement Award” from the Detroit Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists. He is a past president of both the National Conference of Editorial Writers and its Foundation. In 2011, Stokes was inducted into the Michigan Association of Broadcaster’s Hall of Fame and in 2012 he received the “Life Membership Award” from the Association of Opinion Journalists (formerly called the National Conference of Editorial Writers).

Owen Ullmann

Owen Ullmann is the executive editor of the International Economy Magazine. From 1999 to 2019, he held a variety of senior management and editing positions at USA TODAY, including managing editor for special projects. Prior to joining USA TODAY in 1999, Ullmann worked in Washington, D.C., covering economics, politics, foreign affairs and the White House for Business Week magazine, Knight-Ridder Newspapers and The Associated Press. He has won two awards from the White House Correspondents’ Association for coverage of President Reagan. He received his master’s degree in 1973 from the School of Journalism and Mass Communications at the UW-Madison, which has twice honored him with awards for distinguished journalism.

Natalie Yahr

Natalie Yahr is a reporter for the Capital Times in Madison, Wisconsin, where she writes about the local economy with a focus on the challenges and opportunities facing workers, entrepreneurs and job seekers. Since joining the Cap Times in 2019, she has tracked local union drives, explored why in-demand care workers in Wisconsin make so little, investigated a moving company whose surprise bills sometimes topped $30,000, and profiled more than 60 local entrepreneurs.

Natalie has won awards from the Milwaukee Press Club, the Society for Professional Journalists and the Wisconsin Newspaper Association, and she’s published work in Wisconsin Watch, WWNO-FM, Scalawag, Columbia Journalism Review and the New York Times.

Natalie served as a fellow of the Center for Journalism Ethics in 2019, while earning a master’s degree in journalism at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and she has contributed stories to the center’s website since. Her writing for the Center has explained how journalists can report more ethically on child abuse, crime, mass shootings, police violence and Native American communities. “Why Should I Tell You?,” her 2019 guide to less- extractive reporting, has been read by journalists and added to journalism school curricula across the country.

Before becoming a full-time journalist, she trained as a Spanish-English interpreter and coached adult students working to earn their high school equivalency diplomas. She lives in Madison with her husband, son and two cats.

A complete list of former board members can be found here.