Kansas State names Puntney JEA interim executive director

Kansas State names Puntney JEA interim executive director


Linda Puntney

Kansas State University named Linda Puntney, MJE, as the Journalism Education Association interim executive director and will immediately move to conduct a national search for a permanent executive director.

Puntney, the previous JEA executive director for 21 years prior to Kelly Furnas, CJE, will serve the organization as interim executive director beginning immediately and ending July 31, 2017.

“I’m so honored to have the opportunity to serve as JEA’s executive director a second time,” Puntney said. “Kelly Furnas and the JEA board have taken the organization to an exciting level. Maintaining that level and moving the organization even further forward will be a delightful challenge. I look forward to working with the headquarters staff to meet that challenge.”

Puntney served the organization from 1989 to 2010. JEA President Mark Newton, MJE, said Puntney intimately understands the organization, its staff, budget, operations, membership and partnerships.

“Her background in running conventions is exceptional. She knows how to conduct a national election,” Newton said. “Most importantly, like she did before, she will be able to recruit talented persons to apply for the permanent position.”

Additionally, Puntney has taught several classes in the A.Q. Miller School of Journalism and Mass Communications. “Her academic background is diverse and her teaching talents are notable,” Newton said.

“We are delighted to have Linda Puntney back at the A.Q. Miller School in her dual role as interim executive director of the Journalism Education Association and a member of the JMC faculty,” Dr. Birgit Wassmuth, the director of the A.Q Miller School of Journalism and Mass Communications, said. “Because of her previous 21-year experience as executive director, she is a logical choice to lead JEA until the position is filled again with a permanent hire.”

“As our members know, Linda has a long legacy of service to JEA and the talent and desire to be a good steward over the organization, the school and the university while a national search is conducted,” said JEA Educational Initiatives Director Megan Fromm, MJE. “We believe a national search will increase exposure for both the organization and Kansas State, helping us to attract the most qualified candidates and giving both the university and organization time to work together to envision the best possible path ahead.”

Newton said the board will ask K-State to establish the search committee for the permanent position as soon as possible with the hope that K-State and JEA can agree on the next leader prior to the association’s spring convention in April 2017. “Our target date is March 15, 2017,” Newton said.

Newton said he was appreciative of the support of Dr. Wassmuth. “On behalf of the board and our 2,750 members, once again I want to thank Dr. Wassmuth for her commitment to JEA,” he said. “I also want to remind the K-State community — and our members and partners — of our commitment to K-State. Without a doubt, our long and storied history together is a significant constant in our mutual successes.”

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