Jayhawk Journalist
The William Allen White School of Journalism & Mass Communications at the University of Kansas
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Class Notes

Who, What & Where


Find out what your J-School classmates are doing now

Colleen McCain Nelson (j'97) was inducted into the KU Women's Hall of Fame in April. Nelson is a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and former political reporter. She currently is vice president and editorial page editor at the Kansas City Star.

Colleen McCain Nelson (j'97) was inducted into the KU Women's Hall of Fame in April. Nelson is a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and former political reporter. She currently is vice president and editorial page editor at the Kansas City Star.

1970s

Ken Krehbiel (j’76) is executive director of the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics. Read the news release.

Cindy Long (j’76) is media relations manager with Family Features Editorial Syndicate in Mission, Kansas. Watch the video.

Gerald Seib (j’78) is featured in The Wall Street Journal's "The Face of Real News" campaign.

1980s

Jim McCrossen (j’84) was awarded the National Scholastic Press Association Pioneer Award at the Journalism Education Association. McCrossen, the longtime teacher and adviser at Blue Valley Northwest High School, was honored for his long tenure of advising and service to the Kansas Scholastic Press Association board and summer workshops, including KU's summer journalism workshop.

Jim McCrossen (j’84) was awarded the National Scholastic Press Association Pioneer Award at the Journalism Education Association. McCrossen, the longtime teacher and adviser at Blue Valley Northwest High School, was honored for his long tenure of advising and service to the Kansas Scholastic Press Association board and summer workshops, including KU's summer journalism workshop.

Mike Jensen (j’89) vice president of marketing and external affairs for Olathe Health, received the Olathe Chamber of Commerce Volunteer of the Year Award. He and his team raised nearly $4 million for the initial construction of Hospice House in Olathe, Kansas. Jensen also oversees the Olathe Medical Center's Community Health Improvement Plan. 

1990s

Stephen Wade (j’90) was appointed president of The Augusta Chronicle and its Chronicle Media portfolio of businesses. Read the story.

Kelly Duffy (j'91) and Nicole Vap (j'91) received awards in the Radio Television Digital News Association regional awards. Duffy is news director at KOAA-TV News 5 in Colorado Springs, which received an award for overall excellence, small market. Vap is a producer for KUSA in Denver, which won 12 awards in the large market regional division, including three that Vap produced.

Ranjit Arab (j’93) has accepted a position as senior acquisitions editor at the University of Iowa Press.

Chad Lawhorn (j’95) received the Clyde M. Reed Jr. Master Editor Award at the Kansas Press Association Convention. The award recognizes a Kansas editor for a lifetime of achievement that involves commitment to community, the Kansas newspaper industry, and the state.

2000s

CJ Jackson (j'04) and Johanna Maska (j'04) were the hosts of a series of discussions in the spring semester titled “President Trump: The First 100 Days” at the Dole Institute of Politics. Maska is former director of press advance for President Obama and played a key role in his 2008 and 2012 presidential campaigns. As the founder of Ad Astra Strategies, Maska is a growth and strategy advisor to early-stage companies. Jackson is the author of POLITICO’s 2016 Blast and teaches a class on covering presidential elections in the University of Southern California’s Annenberg School of Communications. Jackson spent nearly 10 years with The Associated Press covering Congress, politics and a variety of policy beats. See an interview with Jackson on "Good Morning KU."

CJ Jackson (j'04) and Johanna Maska (j'04) were the hosts of a series of discussions in the spring semester titled “President Trump: The First 100 Days” at the Dole Institute of Politics. Maska is former director of press advance for President Obama and played a key role in his 2008 and 2012 presidential campaigns. As the founder of Ad Astra Strategies, Maska is a growth and strategy advisor to early-stage companies. Jackson is the author of POLITICO’s 2016 Blast and teaches a class on covering presidential elections in the University of Southern California’s Annenberg School of Communications. Jackson spent nearly 10 years with The Associated Press covering Congress, politics and a variety of policy beats. See an interview with Jackson on "Good Morning KU."

Katherine Hollar Barnard (j’03) launched her own legal marketing agency called Firesign, which will help attorneys attract, win and retain business. Barnard, most recently the chief marketing officer at Shook, Hardy & Bacon LLP, said she was inspired to launch Firesign to address friction between lawyers and the clients they serve. Read the story.

Sennett Rockers (j’03, c’03) graduated from the University of Pennsylvania Law School. He is a financial services industry consultant for PwC in New York.

Andy Marso (j’04) has joined The Kansas City Star to cover health care. Since August 2014, Marso has covered health care at Kansas News Service, which is part of KCUR and was formerly called Kansas Health Institute News Service. Read the story.

Haley Harrison (j’06), became anchor of the KMBC 9 News weekdays at 5 p.m. and at 9 p.m. on KCWE.

Jonathan Kealing (j’07, c’07) was named executive editor at PRI.org in January. Kealing has been with PRI since 2011.

Rachel Karwas (j’08) is the assistant director, special events, at the University of Arizona Foundation in Tucson, Arizona, where she plans Board of Trustees meetings and other events.

Steven Levy (j’08) is assistant manager with KC Rising, which works to grow globally competitive sectors and trade, innovation and entrepreneurship, and human capital for the greater Kansas City area. He and his wife, Liz, have a son, Grant Samuel, who was born in June 2016.

Jessica Sain Baird (j’09) recently became content manager at Central Park Conservancy, which restores, manages and enhances Central Park in New York in partnership with the public.

Kelsey Hayes (j’09, c’09) manages the production desk of POLITICO Europe in Brussels, Belgium.

2010s

Jonathan Shorman (j’12) has joined the Wichita Eagle as its statehouse reporter. Read the story.

Tejinder Singh Sodhi (j’13) accepted a position to head the Bureau of Republic TV in Jammu, India. Read the story.

Victoria Baldwin (j’14) is senior strategist with Octagon Sports Marketing in the greater New York area.

Hannah Wise (j’14) is one of 28 women chosen to attend Poynter's Leadership Academy for Women in Digital Media

Ashley Booker (j’15) is a communication associate at the Kansas Health Foundation. She had been a reporter at The Hutchinson News since June 2015.

Former J-School Dean Mike Kautsch was inducted into the Kansas Newspaper Hall of Fame on April 7. Kautsch was at the J-School for 18 years and was dean for 10 years. Read the KU News story.