Nord Wins Top Journalism History Award

David Paul Nord, who earned his Ph.D. in mass communication from Wisconsin in 1979, has won the Sidney Kobre Award for Lifetime Achievement from the American Journalism Historians Association (AJHA).  Nord, Professor Emeritus in the Indiana University School of Journalism, will receive the award at the AJHA annual conference in Raleigh, NC in October.

The Kobre Award is AJHA’s highest honor, recognizing individuals with an exemplary record of sustained achievement in journalism history through research, teaching, and professional activities.

Nord is the author or editor of four books and more than 40 journal articles and book chapters.   “Dave Nord established himself early in his career at Indiana University among the elite of journalism historians,” said Indiana University Journalism Dean Emeritus Trevor Brown.  “His publications and intellectual prowess have earned the admiration of academic historians nationally and internationally.”

Nord was one of the first historians to go beyond the content of newspapers and study how people used the newspaper in their daily lives. His collection of essays in this area was published in 2001 as Communities of Journalism: A History of American Newspapers and Their Readers.

“I simply cannot teach my undergraduate journalism history class without frequent references to Dave’s research,” wrote James L. Baughman, Fetzer Bascom Professor in the School of Journalism & Mass Communication at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.  “Nord’s work usually merits one or two weeks in my graduate seminar. And the students in the seminar, who can be quite exacting critics, always find themselves impressed with Dave’s research.”

Nord spent his entire professorial career at Indiana University, from 1979 until his retirement in December 2011.  In addition to the School of Journalism, Nord was also a Professor of American Studies and an Adjunct Professor of History. Over the years, he served as interim, acting, and associate editor at the Journal of American History, the flagship journal of the Organization of American Historians.

He earned his undergraduate degree at Valparaiso University, followed by an M.A. in History at the University of Minnesota and a Ph.D. in Mass Communication from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.   Nord won the Harold L. Nelson Award, for outstanding contributions to mass communication research, from the Wisconsin journalism school in 2005.

The AJHA award is named in honor of the late Dr. Sidney Kobre, a newspaperman, professor, and author, best known for his book The Development of American Journalism, first published in 1944.