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Everette Dennis

Everette E. Dennis

Professor Emeritus

Everette E. Dennis is professor of journalism at Medill and professor (by courtesy) in the Department of Communication Studies in the School of Communication at Northwestern University.

On sabbatical for the 2020-21 academic year, he served as dean and CEO of Northwestern University in Qatar for nine years while concurrently a tenured professor at Medill.

An author, institution-builder and leader in education, philanthropy, foreign affairs and media research, he was founding executive director of the Gannett/Freedom Forum Media Studies Center at Columbia University where he was editor in chief of the Media Studies Journal as well as a senior vice president and head of the International Consortium on Media Studies for the Gannett and Freedom Forum foundations. In those roles, he engaged with major figures in U.S. and international media and became one of the most widely quoted authorities on media topics.

At Columbia, he developed a media technology laboratory, an advanced studies fellowship program, high profile conferences and major research projects. Subsequently, he was founding president of the American Academy in Berlin working closely with Richard Holbrooke and Henry Kissinger.

Prior to joining Northwestern in 2011, he was Felix E. Larkin Distinguished Professor at Fordham’s Graduate School of Business in New York where he headed the program in communication and media management and directed the Center for Communication. Concurrent with his Fordham appointment, he was executive director of the International Longevity Center, a population aging think tank, associated with Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York City and now based at Columbia University.

Previously, he was dean and professor of the School of Journalism & Communication at the University of Oregon and taught at the University of Minnesota where he advanced from instructor to full professor in six years.

Early in his career he served on the faculty at Kansas State with short term appointments at Oregon and Northwestern and was a public information officer for state mental health agencies in New York and Illinois. The focus of his academic work is in media and society, journalistic practice, media economics and management, media technology and digital disruption, media law/ ethics and global communication.

The author, co-author or editor of some 45 books and more than 200 scholarly and professional articles and various monographs, his work has been translated into several languages including Chinese, Farsi, French, Lithuanian, Malaysian, Malaysian, Persian, Russian, Spanish and others. He also edited three book series for Oxford University Press, Sage Publications and West publishing companies.

He led research projects on media credibility and trust, coverage of the Presidency, media use in the Middle East as well as several policy initiatives on media in Eastern Europe, East Asia and Latin America which produced major prescriptive monographs.

Active as a leader and critic in journalism education, he served as president of the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication Education and received several of the organization’s top honors while authoring a national project on curriculum reform in journalism schools with grants from two foundations.

Most recently at NU-Q, he is credited with developing a global and digital academic program, creating an active research culture and hiring world class faculty and staff while enhancing and increasing the student body and engaging in outreach with media and other institutional partners. He originated and led the Media Use in the Middle East project in 8 countries that produced six major monographs and an award-wining interactive website while establishing itself as a partner of the World Internet Project.

Other achievements on his watch at NU-Q included completion of one of the most advanced media education buildings in the world, creation of a museum, The Media Majlis at NU-Q, a robotic newsroom and a Media Innovation Lab. In Qatar he served on the board of governors of AmCham and of the Academic Bridge Program.

His service contributions include a decade as chair of the national advisory committee for the Fred Rogers Center for Children’s Media and Early Childhood Education and a board member/trustee of the International Center for Journalists, International Communications Institute, International Institute of Photography at Eastman House, American Antiquarian Society and others.

Inducted as a fellow in the American Academy of Arts & Sciences in 2017, he is an elected life member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the American Antiquarian Society and a member of the Century Association and the Harvard Club of New York City. He was the first journalism educator to receive a Liberal Arts Fellowship in law at Harvard Law School and had other fellowships at the Institute of Politics and Nieman Foundation.

Dr. Dennis is married to Emily Thompson Smith, an author, consultant and, formerly science writer and technology editor at BusinessWeek where her work won several National Magazine Awards. Their permanent home address is in Croton-on-Hudson, New York.