Reynolds School of Journalism Dean Al Stavitsky recently spoke at the Library of Congress during a conference hosted by its Radio Preservation Task Force. The conference, “A Century of Broadcasting: Preservation and Renewal,” was held in April in Washington, D.C. and featured talks and panels with hundreds of radio and television historians, archivists, journalists and graduate students.
A longtime historian of media and former broadcast professional himself, Dean Stavitsky spoke on areas of need for historical research on public broadcasting in his talk entitled “A Historical Research Agenda for the U.S. Public Media.”
“The origins of broadcasting in the United States relate directly to our current media environment,” said Stavitsky. “By studying the roots of today’s electronic media system we can understand how we got here, and perhaps, where we’re going.”
Public media is very important to Stavitsky and has been a priority of his as dean of the Reynolds School. The Reynolds School was the first collegiate journalism program in the nation to partner with NPR for its Next-Generation Radio program, an intensive, weeklong student multimedia training project designed to give aspiring journalists an opportunity to work one-on-one with a professional mentor. KUNR Public Media was moved into the Reynolds School during his leadership.
Previously named a Distinguished Scholar by the Library of Congress Radio Preservation Task Force, Stavitsky—who announced plans to step down as dean at the end of the year—plans to return to his scholarship on media history.
With a particular interest in broadcast history in the Silver State, Stavitsky hopes to write the definitive history of Nevada broadcasting. “Once I go back to a faculty role, I will have time to study and write and go around the state to visit archives and talk to people, and I’m just thrilled about that.”
In 2022, Stavitsky was inducted into the Nevada Broadcasters Association’s Hall of Fame in recognition of his dedicated career in the broadcasting industry.