Indiana University

Skip to:

  1. Search
  2. Breadcrumb Navigation
  3. Content
  4. Browse by Topic
  5. Services & Resources
  6. Additional Resources
  7. Multimedia News

Media Contacts

Beth Moellers
IU School of Journalism

George Vlahakis
University Communications

Last modified: Thursday, December 11, 2008

Longtime foreign correspondent Joe Coleman joining faculty of the IU School of Journalism

Dec. 11, 2008

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Longtime foreign correspondent Joe Coleman, who speaks five languages and is the bureau chief for the Associated Press in Tokyo, will join the faculty of the Indiana University School of Journalism beginning in spring 2009.

Coleman has reported from Asia, Latin America, Africa, Europe and the Middle East and most recently has been based in Paris and Tokyo.

Coleman will serve as the Roy W. Howard Professional in Residence, which is named for the longtime leader of Scripps Howard and an ardent believer in the importance of international reporting.

Howard grew up in Indianapolis, delivering the Indianapolis Star and Indianapolis News as a boy. He became one of the leading journalism figures of the 20th century in the United States and throughout the world.

Scripps Howard owned newspapers from New York City to San Francisco, including many in the Midwest, and the United Press -- a worldwide news wire service.

The School of Journalism has a long-established relationship with the Howard family. It oversees the Roy W. Howard Archives; cosponsors the Roy W. Howard National Collegiate Reporting Competition, which takes top student journalists nationwide to Japan and Korea each year; and includes among its faculty appointments the Roy W. Howard Professorship, held by Professor David Weaver, BA'68, MA'69.

Dean Brad Hamm said Coleman is a good fit for the position named for Howard.

"For as much as Roy W. Howard loved journalism and global travel, especially in Asia, I believe he would have enjoyed long talks with an outstanding journalist such as Joe Coleman, who has reported from around the world for almost 20 years," said Hamm, a scholar of Howard.

Coleman, who has a master's degree in international affairs from Columbia University and a bachelor's in English literature from Vassar, began his career by traveling to Bogota, Colombia, in 1989 to cover the drug cartel war against the Colombian government.

"I was there two weeks and got a job because there was so much news," said Coleman, who was hired by United Press International as a stringer-correspondent.

Coleman spent the past four years leading AP's Tokyo bureau and directing multimedia coverage of stories such as the Asian tsunami, global warming and issues in North Korea. Coleman played an important role in the tsunami coverage.

"There was no question that this was the biggest story in the world for about a month, and Joe's contributions were key to what was one of the AP's best and most-praised performances on an international story in many years," said AP's Asia-Pacific editor Patrick McDowell.

After five years as AP's Tokyo bureau chief, Coleman might have become bureau chief in London or Moscow. But he was ready to explore journalism in a different way -- through books and in-depth magazine articles -- and to work with student journalists.

"No matter what's happening in the newspaper business, we still need thoughtful, well-prepared reporters," Coleman said. "And I think through working with students and thinking more deeply about these questions, I'll become a better journalist myself."