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Prominent NPR Correspondent to Lead UM School of Journalism

April 24, 2014

MISSOULA – During his lengthy career with National Public Radio, Larry Abramson has covered the fall of the Berlin Wall, chronicled the recovery of New Orleans schools after Hurricane Katrina and analyzed civil liberties turmoil after 9/11.

His next adventure: leading the University of Montana School of Journalism as dean.

Abramson, formerly the national security correspondent for NPR in Washington, D.C., was selected for the position after an extended national search. He will begin his new UM duties July 1. He will replace Denise Dowling, the radio-TV associate professor who has served as interim dean since August 2012.

“Given his range of experience in journalism, I am confident that he will successfully lead UM’s journalism school into the future,” UM Provost Perry Brown said. “It’s exciting to get someone with the breadth of Abramson’s experience in that post as the journalism school celebrates its centennial year.”

Abramson started as national security correspondent in 2012, and he served as NPR’s Jerusalem correspondent in 2013. He was the NPR education correspondent from 2006 to 2011 and NPR senior editor from 1990 to 1997.

In the 1990s, he designed and oversaw the NPR Diversity Initiative, a program to bring more young, minority journalists to public radio. As an educator and teacher, he has designed workshops on radio journalism and reporting ethics.

His accolades include a 2007 Education Writers Association award for a series on reform efforts at Northwestern High School in Baltimore, a 2004 “Cylab” award for coverage of cybersecurity issues, a 1994 Education Writers Association award for a series on Taft High School in Chicago and a 1991 Unity Award for “Crews,” an examination of Latino gangs in New York City.

Abramson holds a master’s and an undergraduate degree in comparative literature from the University of California, Berkeley.
 
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Contact: Perry Brown, UM provost and vice president for academic affairs, 406-531-1593, 406-243-4689, perry.brown@umontana.edu; Stephen Kalm, search committee chair, dean of UM’s College of Visual and Performing Arts, 406-243-4970, stephen.kalm@umontana.edu.