College Presents Inaugural Award in Investigative Data Journalism

Published: September 29th, 2014

DSC_3056Minnesota Public Radio’s coverage of the cover-up of sexual abuse by the clergy in the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis and the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel’s reporting on delays in hospital screening of newborns won the inaugural “University of Florida Award for Investigative Data Journalism” at the Online News Association’s 2014 Online Journalism Awards banquet, Saturday night in Chicago.

The award, established this year by the UF College of Journalism and Communications, was presented in two categories – Small/Medium and Large. They recognize the growing importance of digital and data journalism and honor high-impact data journalism that is exceptionally well presented.

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Clay Calvert interviews Hustler magazine’s Larry Flynt about 1st Amendment

Published: September 25th, 2014

Larry Flynt and Clay Calvert

Clay Calvert (standing) with Larry Flynt in Flynt’s office in Beverly Hills. (Photo by Steve Johnson.)

Brechner Eminent Scholar in Mass Communication Clay Calvert interviews Hustler magazine publisher and 1st Amendment champion Larry Flynt on the occasion of Hustler‘s 40th anniversary in a video published by The Newseum Institute. The video is produced by Steve Johnson.

Read more and watch the video →

Category: Faculty news

Juan-Carlos Molleda keynote speaker at international colloquium

Published: September 24th, 2014

MolledaJuan-Carlos Molleda was the keynote speaker of the opening plenary at the Global Alliance for Public Relations and Communication Management’s (GA) Research Colloquium on Sunday, Sept. 21, in Madrid, Spain.

The Global Alliance started its operations in 2002.  It is the world’s largest confederation with a secretariat in Lugano, Switzerland, that represents, unites, provides development resources, ands advocates for national and regional professional associations and institutional members of the public relations and corporate communication field.

The name of his keynote address was “What can professionals and scholars learn from each other?” He is also the chair of the Colloquium session “Developing conversations in a globalized world.”

He discussed the virtues of comparative research and how communication technologies are allowing academics and professionals to work together on conducting multinational studies and contributing to the body of knowledge and strategic practices, and explained methodological challenges and theoretical contributions for an evolving and expanding global profession and area of study.

Juan-Carlos also acted as chair of the professional session “Values” at the 8th GA World Public Relations Forum.  The confederation of the world’s public relations and communication professional associations and institutions hosts this event every two years.  The host association is Dircom, the Spanish Association of Communication Directors.

At the Global Alliance’s Research Colloquium and World Public Relations Forum in 2012, delegates from 30 countries agreed on a vision of the communicative organization with three key roles for public relations and communication: The definition of organizational character and values; the creation of cultures of listening and engagement; and the instilling of responsibility in all its dimensions – individual, professional, organizational and societal.

This year, delegates representing 62 countries in the 2014 Forum in Madrid continue this conversation on the gathering theme: “Communication with conscience.”

The outcome of the 2014 Forum centers on the key principles of communicative leadership: How can communication help organizations become leading actors? How can public relations and communication professionals play leading roles in this transformation? What personal journeys have leading communicators had to get them to leadership roles?

Category: Faculty news

Amy Jo Coffey selected for national AEF program, publishes several articles

Published: September 24th, 2014

Amy Jo Coffey

Amy Jo Coffey


Amy Jo Coffey was one of 15 professors selected nationally to participate in the Advertising Educational Foundation’s Visiting Professor Program this summer.

She spent the last two weeks of July as the guest of two media agencies within the Starcom MediaVest Group–MediaVest in New York City and Tapestry in Chicago.

During the program, Amy Jo observed the media planning and buying processes, strategy work sessions, and vendor and strategic partner meetings. She had the opportunity to meet with leaders in consumer insights, research and marketing, and sales from Univision, Telemundo, Spotify, Google, and Facebook, as well as key personnel and executives from MediaVest and Tapestry.

As part of the Visiting Professor Program, Amy Jo also gave a research talk at both agencies, sharing her insights on reaching multicultural, non-English speaking and bilingual audiences in the U.S.

Starcom MediaVest Group is the largest media agency network in the world, and Tapestry, part of SMG Multicultural, is the largest multicultural brand agency in billings in the United States. Both are also among the most awarded for their work. More information on AEF’s Visiting Professor Program can be found at

Amy Jo has also had a stellar research year, publishing several articles in international journals:

  • Coffey, A.J. (2014). “The power of cultural factors in Spanish-language advertising,” Journal of Advertising Research, 54(3), 346-355.

She also two other articles published recently, which were co-authored with Yan Yang (PhD, ’11) now of High Point University:

  • Yang, Y. & Coffey, A.J. (2014). “Audience valuation in the new media era: Interactivity, online engagement, and electronic word-of-mouth value.” The International Journal on Media Management, 16(2), 77-103.
  • Yang, Y. & Coffey, A.J. (2014). “Audience interactivity on video websites and the business implications for online media platforms.” Journal of Media Business Studies, 11(2), 25-56.

Congratulations, Amy Jo.

Category: Faculty news

Science writers will share expertise as UF Science Journalists in Residence

Published: September 17th, 2014

Two leading science journalists will each spend a week on the University of Florida campus this year as part of the university’s new Science Journalist in Residence Program.

Jennie Erin Smith

Jennie Erin Smith

David Epstein

David Epstein

Jennie Erin Smith, author of “Stolen World: A Tale of Reptiles, Smugglers, and Skulduggery,” will visit the university in early November as UF’s first Science Journalist in Residence, speaking to students in the College of Journalism and Communications, giving a public lecture and interacting with faculty researchers.

David Epstein, author of “The Sports Gene: Inside the Science of Extraordinary Athletic Performance,” will serve as the second journalist in residence in late January.

“The goal of the program is to give students and faculty the opportunity to deepen their knowledge of science journalism through interacting with some of its most captivating practitioners,” said Diane McFarlin, dean of the College of Journalism and Communications.

Smith specializes in science and natural history writing and has a longtime interest in zoos, museums, animals and conservation. A former environmental reporter at the Daytona Beach News-Journal, she currently writes for the Wall Street Journal, The New Yorker and other publications.

“I am honored to become UF’s first science journalist in residence,” Smith said. “Science journalism can mean a lot of things, but all good science writers demonstrate curiosity, impartiality, attention to detail and the ability to simplify complex ideas without distorting them. I look forward to a great exchange of thoughts and experiences, with students and faculty alike, during my week at UF.”

Smith spent years investigating the exotic animal trade for “Stolen World,” which The New Yorker called an “accomplished, often uproarious account of the international reptile trade,” and Salon called “a flabbergasting chronicle of atrocious behavior, foolhardy schemes and dangerous animals, that reads like a real-life Elmore Leonard novel.”

“The Sports Gene” was a New York Times bestseller for Epstein, who has written for Sports Illustrated, Discover, Scientific American, Slate, The Washington Post, National Geographic and many other publications. His TED Talk on the subject has been viewed more than 1.7 million times.

“The fact that the program is specifically looking to promote discussion about science journalism is really meaningful to me,” said Epstein. “I think opening a discourse with journalism students about the power and peril of communicating science will be invigorating both for me and for them.”

UF Provost Joe Glover said that as part of its preeminence initiative, the university wants to create more opportunities for students and faculty to interact with the top leaders in their fields.

“We’re pursuing this goal through the new faculty we’re hiring, but we are also committed to bringing in more leading academics and professionals as guests – esteemed visitors who will both share their wisdom and get some exposure to our dynamic and exceptional university,” Glover said. “The new Science Journalist in Residence program is a great example of that approach, and I look forward to hosting our first two science journalists this year.”


Contact: Quenta P. Vettel, 352-846-3013,
Writer: Joseph Kays

The Innovators Series – Mark Little of Storyful

Published: September 17th, 2014

The Innovators Series kicks off Thursday, Sept. 18 at 6:30 p.m. with Mark Little, founder and CEO of Storyful, the world’s first social media news agency.  He leads a team of journalists and technologists who discover and verify the most compelling content on platforms like YouTube and Twitter.

His company works with the biggest news organizations and social networks in the world, including YouTube, ABC News and the New York Times. The company was acquired by News Corp in December 2013, and entered an agreement with Facebook to power the FB Newswire earlier this year. Mark has more than two decades of experience in journalism. He was an award-winning foreign correspondent for the Irish national TV station RTE. He also presented the network’s top-rated current affairs programme, Prime Time, and was its first Washington correspondent. Mark was educated at Trinity College Dublin and Dublin City University.

For more information, go to:

The Innovators Series - Mark Little of Storyful - Sept. 18, 6:30 p.m., Gannett Auditorium

Sandi Chance speaking at Law School’s Constitution Day event this Wednesday

Published: September 15th, 2014

Sandi ChanceThe Levin College of Law is holding Constitution Day on Wednesday, Sept. 17 from noon – 1 p.m. in the Martin H. Levin Advocacy Center courtroom and foyer. Constitution Day commemorates the signing of the U.S. Constitution in 1787, and each year the University of Florida – along with other public funded universities – celebrate the day with special programs and activities. 

This year’s event, “National Security and Privacy After Snowden,” will feature talks and Q&A from Senior District Judge Roger Vinson of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Florida, Jon Mills, Director for UF Law’s Center for Governmental Responsibility, and Sandra Chance, UF journalism professor and executive director of the Brechner Center for Freedom of Information.

A reception will follow in the foyer, with cake and lemonade.


Category: Faculty news

Clay Calvert quoted in The National Law Review

Published: September 15th, 2014

DSC_0007The Marion B. Brechner First Amendment Project is mentioned and Clay Calvert is quoted several times in an article by Tony Mauro that appears in today’s edition of The National Law Journal, the nation’s leading daily newspaper for attorneys.

Tony Mauro is the newspaper’s Supreme Court reporter, and this article focuses on the brief that the Marion B. Brechner First Amendment Project filed with the Court in August in the case of Elonis v. United States.

Read the article here: Clay Calvert quoted in Clay Calvert quoted in The National Law Journal


Category: Faculty news

College-led delegation holds seminar in Colombia

Published: September 15th, 2014

Juan-Carlos panelOur globe-trotting Juan-Carlos Molleda and three of his colleagues held a three-day executive seminar on “Strategic Communications and Public Relations Management” in Medellin, Colombia Sept. 10-13. The seminar was held in conjunction with the Colombia Center of Public Relations and Organizational Communication (CECORP).

In addition to Juan-Carlos, speakers included Marta Hartmann, a lecturer in UF’s Department of Agricultural Education and Communication; Randy Moreau, Chief Financial Officer of Bilzin Sumberg and a lecturer in the College’s master’s program in Global Strategic Communication; and Associate Professor of Telecommunication Michael Leslie.

According to Juan-Carlos, “September is International month for public relations in Colombia. Public relations is expanding in Latin America and the need for professional development is increasing. It is a great opportunity for us to extend the reach of the College and University, and share our leadership in public relations and communications.”Michael[1]

Sessions were held on effective leadership, business and financial essentials for communication professionals, sustainability communications and stakeholder analysis and engagement. It is a program the College hopes to grow and partner with groups from other countries.

The UF delegation also spoke at Remington and EAFIT universities. Potential partnerships for future training and education opportunities were discussed.

22[2]Congratulations on a great seminar.

Category: Faculty news

Letter from UFPD Regarding Recent Assaults

Published: September 8th, 2014

UPD_LogoDear UF students, faculty and staff,

In light of the three assaults that have been reported on or near campus during the past week, I am writing to remind you of the importance of looking out for your own safety and that of others.

The University of Florida Police Department (UFPD) and the Gainesville Police Department (GPD) are investigating three incidents of women who reported being grabbed by an individual and subsequently battered. In response, UFPD and GPD have increased patrols on campus, adjacent to campus and in the Sorority Row area. In all three incidents, the suspect has been described in a similar manner. We are looking for a white male in his late 20s to 30 years old, between 6’4” and 6’5”, and 250 to 260 pounds.

We recognize that these are troubling incidents but want to assure you that both police departments are focusing their efforts toward apprehending the suspect or suspects, and we are asking for your help. If you prefer to remain anonymous, please use the UFPD Silent Witness or contact Alachua/Gilchrist County Crime Stoppers at 352-372-7867. Remember, safety is a shared responsibility so we also ask that you follow the University of Florida Police Department Safety Tips. Those include:

  • Report suspicious activities or individuals immediately by calling 9-1-1. 
  • Always be alert and aware of your surroundings. This is particularly true if you are wearing headphones and may not be able to hear someone near or behind you. 
  • If someone bothers you, don’t be embarrassed to attract attention to yourself. Yell! 
  • Avoid walking alone. On campus, use the Student Nighttime Auxiliary Patrol (SNAP), a safe campus escort service available between 6:30 p.m. and 3 a.m. by calling 352-392-7627 (SNAP) or downloading the SNAP safety application and requesting an escort. 
  • Stay in well-lighted areas, away from alleys, bushes and entryways

Other available resources include U Matter We Care; UFPD Victim Advocates (352-392-5648); and the Counseling and Wellness Center (352-392-1575).

As always, please call 9-1-1 during an emergency or use one of more than 300 Blue Light Safety phones located throughout campus. We also encourage everyone to download the “Tap Shield” safety application that also can be used to contact police. Finally, please follow us for updated information through the UFPD home page, the UF Alert home page, or the UF Public Safety Twitter Page.

Deputy Chief Darren J. Baxley
Associate Director of Operations
University of Florida Police Department