Spong PR in Minneapolis Hosts Missouri Journalism Reception

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Alumni, Friends Meet the School’s New Dean and Network

Minneapolis (Dec. 10, 2015) — Missouri School of Journalism alumni and friends gathered at Minneapolis-based Spong public relations agency on Dec. 8 to meet Dean David Kurpius, network and receive an update from the University of Missouri campus.

President of Spong PR Julie Batliner, BS ’96 agricultural journalism, welcomed the group and introduced Kurpius.

Kurpius, who joined the School in July, is using his first months to meet with alumni, industry professionals and others as part of a listening tour. He is also meeting individually with the School’s more than 200 faculty and staff. Kurpius said he will use the feedback he has received as part of the strategic planning process that will begin in January.

Among the highlights Kurpius shared are the First Amendment Defender Award senior Tim Tai will receive from the Radio Television Digital News Foundation for student work being picked up by major news outlets and a top five placement in the feature writing category of the Hearst Journalism Awards.

The event included a tour of the agency, located in downtown Minneapolis. The creatively designed space is topped off by a 17,000-square-foot patio on the roof with a garden and perfect view of the Minnesota Twins’ Target Field. It is a responsibly-designed space structured to go beyond environmental and green initiatives to help its people achieve sustainable schedules and a better quality of life.

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Sarah Tillou, BJ ’13; Lauren Woods; Courtney Ledo, BJ ’13, MA ’14; Doug Spong; Mindy Handberg.

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Dean David Kurpius; Ellie Bathe.

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Mindy Handberg; Ron Handberg.

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Eric Johnson; Doug Spong; Associate Dean for Undergraduate Studies Lynda Kraxberger; Greg Williamson.

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Reynolds Journalism Institute Executive Director Randy Picht; Patty Davies, BJ ’82; Evan Davies, BJ ’82.

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Dean David Kurpius; Lori Keekley; Jeff Kocur.

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Dean David Kurpius shares updates from the J-School and campus.

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Brendan Watson, MA ’07; Dean David Kurpius; Lynn Wilson; Barb Wilson.

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Glenda Holste, BJ ’68; Director of Advancement Colin Kilpatrick.

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Guests take a tour of Spong PR. The agency is a responsibly designed space structured to go beyond environmental and green initiatives to help its people achieve sustainable schedules and a better quality of life.

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Associate Dean for Undergraduate Studies Lynda Kraxberger; Laura Widmer; Jeff Kocur.

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Katie Spielberger; Katie Moritz, BJ ’13.

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A vibrant mural graces a wall in the agency.

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Host Julie Batliner, BS ’96 agricultural journalism, president of Spong PR; Dean David Kurpius.

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Host Julie Batliner, BS ’96 agricultural journalism, president of Spong PR; Dean David Kurpius; Sarah Tillou, BJ ’13; Courtney Ledo, BJ ’13, MA ’14; Lauren Woods.

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Dec 10, 2015

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