Journalism Professor Honored for Achievement in Diversity Research

Aug. 18, 2009

AUSTIN, Texas — Paula Poindexter, associate professor and graduate adviser in journalism at The University of Texas at Austin, is the inaugural recipient of the Lionel C. Barrow, Jr. Award for Distinguished Achievement in Diversity Research and Education presented by the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication (AEJMC).

The award, jointly supported by AEJMC's Minorities and Communication (MAC) Division and the Commission on the Status of Minorities (CSM), recognizes outstanding individual accomplishment and leadership in journalism and mass communication research, teaching and service that emphasize underrepresented groups by race and ethnicity.

Poindexter is a leading scholar on diversity in broadcast and print news coverage and news media leadership. She also examines research methodologies and ethics, and news media audiences, including the expectations of news consumers of color.

In addition to being co-editor of the book "Women, Men, and News: Divided and Disconnected in the News Media Landscape" and co-author of the textbook, "Research in Mass Communication: A Practical Guide," Poindexter, who earned her Ph.D. degree from Syracuse University, has published or presented about 70 articles, book chapters and papers.

Her article "Race and Ethnicity in Local Television News: Framing, Story Assignments, and Source Selections," one of her most-cited publications which was published in Journal of Broadcasting & Electronic Media, led to her interview in CNN's ground-breaking documentary, "Black in America," which was seen by 2.3 million viewers.

Prior to joining the faculty at The University of Texas at Austin, Poindexter worked as a manager and executive at the Los Angeles Times and as a reporter and producer at Houston's NBC affiliate, KPRC-TV.

Dr. Lionel C. Barrow, Jr., for whom the award is named, formerly was an advertising executive and the dean of the School of Communications at Howard University. As a long-time AEJMC member, he provided key leadership and guidance to the association during his many years of service. In 1968, he founded the Ad Hoc Committee on Minority Education to recruit, train and place minorities in communications. In 1970, he founded and became the acting head of the Minorities and Communication Division. The Communication Theory and Methodology Division renamed its diversity scholarship after Barrow in 1997, the same year he received the AEJMC Presidential Award for his contributions. In 2005, he was recognized with one of AEJMC's highest honors, the Distinguished Service Award, for his outstanding service in promoting diversity within the association and the discipline.

For more information, contact: Erin Geisler, KUT Radio, Moody College of Communication, (512) 475-8071.