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Pulitzer Prize Winning Journalist Randy Smith



Welcome to Episode 31 of Products of the Mind. On this episode, I speak with Pulitzer Prize winning journalist Randy Smith.

“I think underneath every journalist is this feeling that by shedding light on an entire situation, you make life a little bit better for the community and help the community move forward in a progressive and enlightened way.”

The focus of today’s talk is the importance of journalism with Professor Randy Smith. Randy’s recollection of the history of journalism, and the development and transformation of investigative reporting over time is quite interesting and informative.

Have you heard of the Hyatt Skyway Collapse of 1979? I hadn’t. Randy recalls the scene of the tragedy and describes both the event and the journalistic aftermath that led him and his staff to win the 1982 Pulitzer Prize for spot news reporting…a news report that likely prevented countless future tragedies.

Randy also reports on his own childhood and upbringing that led him to journalism. He briefly recalls the turmoil of important social movements such as women’s rights, civil rights, and the Vietnam War; and he explains the experience of reporting during important times of transition and protest. He also shares the story of reporting on Jimmy Carter’s progressive “New South” movement, and following the Presidential campaign trail of segregationist governor George Wallace.

Randy provides insight about the importance of journalism as it relates to social change, business, and politics; and, the personal side of investigative reporters. Learn about the important role of entrepreneurship in investigating reporting, and hear about how Jeff Bezos is transforming The Washington Post.

Be sure to listen through the end so you can hear about Randy’s impressive progress in academia and his role in connecting the university with local and state businesses via the Missouri Business Alert; and his work with Alfred Friendly Press Partners where he helps empower the journalists of the future from “information hungry societies.”

This and so much more today with Randy Smith.

You can contact Randy on LinkedIn

Honorable mentions from this Episode:

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The Credits

Products of the Mind is produced by Mana Monzavi.

The illustration accompanying these show notes is by Whit Harris.

The theme music for this episode was provided by Le Chateau. The track name is “Bury You.” Go buy it on Soundcloud!

This episode and these show notes © 2016 David Lizerbram

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