Richard D. Hadley

Editor at Social Security Administration

Degree(s): BJ '70 (News-Editorial)

Whereabouts: United States, Falls Church, Virginia

What do you do now?
I helped launch and now write for a newsletter of an SSA component agency, a position I came to after decades as reporter, editor and publisher for a series of private sector, independent news organizations.

How did the news-editorial sequence prepare you for what you do now?
I think the hands-on experience and writing stories on a deadline really helped me. Getting to write real stories about real people for the real world puts you in a mindset that helps you to be successful.

What is your favorite J-School memory?
During 1968-1970, there was a lot of action on campus. I had the opportunity to cover the Vietnam anti-war demonstrations, the intervisitation controversy, the Columbia Free Press Underground controversy and the protest march to Jefferson City.

Is there a lesson that you learned through the School that has stuck with you up until now?
Go out and ask a hell of a lot of questions and prize your independence as a journalist.

What did you want to be when you were a kid?
I wanted to be an astronomer until I took calculus and started working on the student newspaper.

What advice would you give to current journalism students?
Cover everything you can. Write as much as you can and interview everyone you can. The more you can do those things, the better off you will be.

What does the Journalism School mean to you now?
The J-School is a benchmark in training, education and socialization in journalism nationwide.

Updated: November 7, 2011