Campus News Society & Culture

UGA’s Peabody Awards welcome four new board members

Athens, Ga. – The University of Georgia has approved four new members of the George Foster Peabody Awards Board. Joining other distinguished experts who select television and radio’s most coveted prize are Doreen Ringer Ross of Los Angeles, Barbie Zelizer of Philadelphia, Maureen Ryan of Chicago and Steve Bryant of London.

“The selection of Peabody Award recipients depends on the experience and knowledge of our board members,” said Horace Newcomb, director of the Peabody Awards. “It also depends on a shared concern for the significance of electronic media in our lives, our societies and cultures. As stewards of the world’s oldest award for electronic media, we depend on this kind of personal commitment. Our new colleagues will certainly expand and enrich the discussions and debates that determine each year’s very small, select number of recipients.”

Next March, Ringer Ross, Zelizer, Bryant and Ryan will join Newcomb, 2010-11 board chair Raul Garza and ten veteran board members in Athens to choose the recipients of the 70th annual Peabody Awards from a field of more than 1,000 entries from broadcast and cable television, radio and the Internet. The 2010 recipients will be announced on Thursday, March 31.

As BMI’s vice president of film/TV relations, Ringer Ross oversees all activity from the Los Angeles-based department serving film and television composers. She has established many programs for composers, including the Sundance Institute’s Composer’s Lab, and oversees BMI’s film scoring scholarships at USC, UCLA, NYU, Columbia College and Berklee College of Music. Before joining BMI, Ringer Ross held artist development positions at A&M Records, ABC Records and MCA Records and worked in television as a producer on a wide array of programs.

Ryan recently joined AOL Television as its lead television critic after 13 years at the Chicago Tribune covering television, primarily, but also popular culture, the Internet, media and music. Her Tribune website, The Watcher, has been nominated for an Editor and Publisher Espy Award for Best Entertainment Blog, and Variety in 2007 named her one of the six most influential critics in America. She also has done commentary about television for NPR, CNN, MSNBC and other media outlets.

Bryant has been senior curator of television for the British Film Institute since 1988. Author of The Television Heritage (The Broadcasting Debate: 4), the BFI TV100 booklet and numerous papers about television, he is a member of the executive council of the Fédération Internationale des Archives de Télévision/International Federation of Television Archives and is the initiator of the FIAT/IFTA Television Studies Seminar, first held in Paris in May 2010.

Author or editor of seven books, among them Journalism After September 11, Zelizer is the Raymond Williams Professor of Communication at the University of Pennsylvania and former president of the International Communication Association. A media critic who has contributed analysis of cultural memory, journalism and images to Newsday, The Nation and PBS’s NewsHour with Jim Lehrer, she is a former Guggenheim Fellow and is currently a fellow of the Center for Advanced Study of Social and Behavioral Sciences at Stanford University.

Full biographies all 15 Peabody board members are available upon request.

The Peabody Awards, established in 1940 and administered by UGA’s Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication, are the oldest honor in electronic media. Today the Peabody recognizes distinguished achievement and meritorious public service by stations, networks, producing organizations and individuals. For more information, see

Established in 1915, the Grady College provides seven undergraduate majors: advertising, broadcast news, magazines, newspapers, public relations, publication management and telecommunication arts. The college offers two graduate degrees and is home to WNEG-TV, the Knight Chair in Health and Medical Journalism and the Peabody Awards. For more information, see