Campus News

Alumni couple establish journalism professorship

Fairness, balance, accuracy and credibility-these values have guided veteran journalists Carolyn and Don Carter throughout their long professional careers and ­personal lives. Their recent ­contributions to the university aim to advance these values in future generations.

The Carters have made sizeable gifts to establish this year the Carolyn McKenzie and Don E. Carter Professorship of Excellence in Journalism in the Grady ­College of Journalism and Mass ­Communication.

“Carolyn and Don’s commitment to improving the practice of journalism led them to establish this professorship at their alma mater,” says Dean John Soloski. “The Grady College is known worldwide for the high quality of its graduates.

This professorship will help the college do even more to educate the next generation of journalists and to help shape the practice of journalism in the United States and throughout the world.”

A search is under way to select the first Carter Professor, who will work with the newspaper industry and college faculty to help improve a whole range of newspaper operations.

“When we enrolled in the Grady College, two years apart, we found the professors, the classes and the inspiration to launch us on a lifetime of journalism,” says Mr. Carter. “Through the professorship, we want to express our appreciation in some useful way for the inspiration and education we received from our study there.”

The Carters express hope their new professorship will enrich the research and teaching of journalistic practices, ethics and credibility for students and professionals alike. 

The Carter chair will focus on issues of fairness, bias and balance, and study the rights of privacy, conflicts of interest, news display and the role of journalists in a community.

“Our belief is that such a professorship will help assure journalistic excellence in a period when journalism is becoming more complex as media merge, technology accelerates and public doubt mounts about its credibility,” says Mr. Carter.

“Carolyn and Don Carter have spent their lives pursuing and creating excellence, from the Atlanta newspapers to Knight-Ridder, the Red & Black and journalism programs nationwide,” says Kent Middleton, head of the Grady journalism department. “Legions of colleagues and friends revere this ­admirable couple for their character, loyalty, humor and wisdom. It will be an honor to work alongside a ­distinguished professor dedicated to ­improving journalism in the name of Carolyn and Don Carter.”