The founding director and editor of the Center for News Excellence and Engagement is Paula Poindexter, a thought leader, journalism professor at the University of Texas at Austin, and author of Millennials, News, and Social Media: Is News Engagement a Thing of the Past? and the forthcoming, News for a Mobile-First Consumer. Her books as well as her articles, papers, opinion pieces, interviews, presentations, teaching, and public service that have addressed news audiences, journalism practice and journalism education, diversity in news, and presidential election coverage are informed by her professional experience as a manager and executive at the Los Angeles Times and reporter and co-producer for KPRC-TV, the NBC-affiliate in Houston.
A Ph.D. from Syracuse University, Poindexter is the recipient of several national awards that have recognized her research, leadership, and service. She is also the co-founder and editor of Millennials and News, a daily curated source of news for Millennials that is available on Facebook. As the 2013-2014 AEJMC president, Poindexter proposed and developed News Engagement Day, the Center for News Excellence and Engagement, and the annual News Audience Research Paper Award which encourages and recognizes new research that provides insight into today’s news consumers.