Walter Hussman

One year later, Walter Hussman still denying involvement in Nikole Hannah-Jones tenure standoff

BY: - July 7, 2022

This week marks one year since acclaimed journalist Nikole Hannah-Jones turned down a tenure offer from UNC-Chapel Hill, choosing to instead start a new Center for Journalism and Democracy at Howard University. Policy Watch broke the story of the UNC-Chapel Hill Board of Trustees initially denying Hannah-Jones a vote on tenure, and deeply reported the […]

PW exclusive: A conversation with former UNC journalism school dean Susan King

BY: - April 14, 2022

Despite the frustrations of her stormy final year in office, King remains optimistic about the future of the 'J School' and the profession it supports Last week Susan King was inducted into the NC Media & Journalism Hall of Fame, a career curtain call after completing a decade as dean of the UNC-Chapel Hill’s Hussman School of Journalism and Media.

UNC leaders address investigation into faculty over donor agreement

BY: - April 8, 2022

On Friday UNC-Chapel Hill’s top leaders publicly addressed the controversy over an investigation into the school’s own faculty over a leaked donor agreement. Chancellor Kevin Guskiewicz and Provost Chris Clemens answered questions about the matter at a Friday afternoon faculty council meeting, calling it “an inquiry” rather than “an investigation.” “I want to be clear […]

Documents show new details in “sweeping and disturbing” UNC-Chapel Hill faculty investigation

BY: - April 6, 2022

A UNC-Chapel Hill investigation of its own faculty was much wider and deeper than previously disclosed, according to new documents released under state open records law . Documents released last week show the probe went beyond reading faculty members’ emails to searching backup systems on their computers. It may have included as many as 22 […]

UNC-Chapel Hill makes list of 10 worst colleges for free speech

BY: - March 22, 2022

UNC-Chapel Hill is among the the 10 worst colleges in the nation for free speech, according to an annual roundup by the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education. The non-partisan group, dedicated to free speech and academic freedom on campuses, cited last year’s controversy over the university’s botched hiring of Nikole Hannah-Jones, a story first […]

Walter Hussman returns as UNC’s journalism school faces crisis of values, diversity

BY: - October 15, 2021

The mega-donor's 'hush-hush homecoming' reignites concern among faculty When Walter Hussman returned to UNC-Chapel Hill this week, he hoped to begin mending relations with the journalism school that bears his name. But that proved to be difficult, given the mega-donor’s lobbying against the hiring of Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Nikole Hannah-Jones. 


N&O columnist: Time for UNC to send right-wing mega-donor packing

BY: - October 14, 2021

Be sure to check out columnist Ned Barnett’s fine essay in this morning’s edition of Raleigh’s News & Observer. In “As Hussman returns to UNC, it’s time for UNC to say goodbye,” he offers a clear explanation of why the UNC School of Journalism should end its relationship with the man — right-wing publisher Walter […]

Free speech group: Ongoing UNC leak investigation violates First Amendment, creates “chilling effect”

BY: - August 20, 2021

The Foundation for Individual Rights in Education isn’t satisfied with UNC-Chapel Hill’s answers to lingering questions about the school’s investigation of a leaked donor agreement. Earlier this month, Policy Watch reported  the investigation into the school’s contract with mega-donor Walter Hussman included reading faculty e-mails and questioning professors who have been critical of the Arkansas publisher […]

UNC-Chapel Hill Journalism dean stepping down

BY: - August 17, 2021

Susan King, dean of the UNC Hussman School of Journalism and Media at UNC-Chapel Hill, will step down at the end of this year. In a message to faculty Tuesday, King said she never intended to stay in the position for more than a decade. A search for her successor will be launched this week, […]

UNC questioning professors, accessing emails in Hussman contract probe

BY: - August 4, 2021

A UNC-Chapel Hill investigation into a leaked donor agreement is focusing on professors who have been critical of Walter Hussman, the wealthy Arkansas media magnate whose $25 million pledge to the university’s journalism school led to it being renamed for him. It also includes the university examining faculty emails without their knowledge, according to sources […]

UNC journalism faculty members: Wealthy donors should not define the school’s values

BY: - July 28, 2021

Members of the UNC-Chapel Hill journalism school faculty overwhelmingly reject the notion that a mega-donor's "core values" of journalism should be the official values of the school, according to a recent survey. Instead, the faculty members favor independently determining the school's values.

UNC mega-donor objected to Hannah-Jones essay on reparations for slavery

BY: - June 3, 2021

In the Policy Watch interview with Walter Hussman Jr. published Thursday, the Arkansas-based media magnate and UNC-Chapel Hill mega-donor details his opposition to the hiring of acclaimed journalist Nikole Hannah-Jones as the school’s Knight Chair in Race and Investigative Journalism. As Policy Watch has reported extensively, vocal conservative opposition to Hannah-Jones and The 1619 Project […]