Montana Public Radio

journalism

Gwen Florio is the former editor of the Missoulian. Her journalism career spans over 40 years working for large and small newspapers, including covering wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. She's also the author of seven novels.
Courtesy Gwen Florio

Missoulian editor Gwen Florio resigned from the paper recently, in the wake of the editorial board's controversial endorsement of PSC candidate Jennifer Fielder — an endorsement the paper retracted the very next day. Florio's journalism career spans over 40 years working for large and small newspapers, including covering wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. She's also the author of seven novels. She spoke this week with MTPR's Sally Mauk.

Another round of newsroom reductions has hit newspapers owned by Lee Enterprises. At least seven staff members have recently had their employment end with the publishing company that owns newspapers in major cities across Montana.

According to the Montana News Guild, a long time reporter with the Missoulian left his position after taking a buyout in September. The Guild says Lee last month also laid off a Missoulian copy - design desk employee and a part-time photographer.

Montana Public Radio has won a Regional Edward R. Murrow Award for investigative reporting in Corin Cates-Carney's story about Montana lobbyist spending reports.

The Murrow Awards are the embodiment of the values and principles set forth by Edward R. Murrow, a journalism pioneer who set the standards for the highest quality broadcast journalism. They're among the most respected awards in journalism.


The Billings Gazette laid off three people from their newsroom earlier this month. The latest string of cutbacks in Billings mirror widespread newsroom layoffs in Montana and across the nation.

Elizabeth Jensen in NPR's public editor.
Allison Shelley / NPR

If you have a complaint about something you've heard on NPR, Elizabeth Jensen wants to hear from you. As NPR's public editor, Jensen is the liaison between listeners and the NPR newsroom. Prior to working for NPR, Jensen covered media for the New York Times, the L. A. Times and the Columbia Journalism Review. Jensen is in Missoula to talk about journalism ethics and transparency, and she sat down in our studios with Sally Mauk.

New York Times Chief Washington Correspondent Carl Hulse, MTPR journalist Sally Mauk and Pulitzer-Prize-winning New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd at the University of Montana.
Beau Baker / MTPR

Two New York Times journalists — Pulitzer-Prize-winning columnist Maureen Dowd and Chief Washington Correspondent Carl Hulse — are in Missoula to kick off the Baucus Institute lecture series at the University of Montana. Hulse and Dowd sat down in our studios to talk journalism and politics with Sally Mauk.

Missoula Independent sign.
Josh Burnham

Staffers at the Missoula Independent newspaper say its parent company, Lee Enterprises, is threatening to gut the alternative weekly. Monday, the paper turned to its readers for help.

The Missoula Independent’s staff unionized earlier this year, making it one of only a handful of union papers now owned by publishing giant Lee Enterprises.

Greg Gianforte (right) accepts an award from U.S. Chamber of Commerce rep Chris Eyler (left) and Daily Interlake publisher Rick Weaver, at the Daily Interlake in Kalispell, May 3, 2018.
Nicky Ouellet

Thursday, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce gave Republican Congressman Greg Gianforte one of its Spirit of Enterprise Awards. About 40 local chamber members attended an award ceremony amidst giant rolls of newsprint at the Kalispell Daily Interlake newspaper’s warehouse.

Missoula Independent sign.
Josh Burnham

Staff at the Missoula Independent weekly newspaper voted unanimously this afternoon to unionize.

A year ago, Lee Enterprises bought the Independent. Iowa-based Lee owns papers across 21 states, including in Billings, Butte, Helena and Missoula.

Derek Brouwer of the newly formed Missoula News Guild says unionizing will protect the Independent’s editorial and stylistic independence.

Deborah Potter is the 2018 Pollner professor at the University of Montana School of Journalism. She's a veteran reporter who's covered the White House, Congress, environmental news and national politics.
Courtesy Tate Samata

"Journalism and the Public Trust" is a well-timed course being taught this spring at the University of Montana by visiting Pollner professor Deborah Potter. Potter has covered the White House and Congress for CBS, and environmental issues and national politics for CNN. She recently sat down in our studio with Sally Mauk, to talk about "fake news" and attacks on journalists and news organizations. Polls show two thirds of Americans don’t trust the media to report the news accurately. Potter says the decline in trust has been underway for a long time.

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