Josh Stearns

director Local News Lab GR Dodge Foundation

Josh Stearns is a journalist and organizer who works at the intersection of communities and communication. He currently directs the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation’s journalism sustainability project, focused on developing new revenue models for local news rooted in community engagement and creative collaboration.

Prior to joining the Dodge Foundation, he spent 7 years running national advocacy campaigns in support of freedom of expression and media diversity as Press Freedom Director at Free Press. Prior to that, he directed policy and communications for Campus Compact, a national coalition of more than 1,000 colleges and universities committed to the civic purposes of higher education.

His research and reporting have appeared online at the Guardian, Columbia Journalism Review, PBS MediaShift, Mother Jones, Orion Magazine and BoingBoing.

He is a Visiting Scholar in the Journalism and Communication Departments at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst and a lecturer at Harvard’s Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics and Public Policy. In the past he taught at the Center for Public Policy and Administration and the English Department at UMass Amherst.

In 2013 he founded VerificationJunkie.com, a growing directory of tools for social journalism and verification of eyewitness media. He was awarded Storify of the Year and the Lew Hill Media Ally award for my innovative work in press freedom and digital storytelling.

Josh was a founding board member of the Freedom of the Press Foundation and founding member of the First Draft Coalition focused on citizen journalism, eyewitness media and breaking news.

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