Pulitzer-winning editor hired at NU

Pulitzer-winning editor hired at NU

By John Guilfoil

The School of Journalism, long known for bringing in veteran reporters to educate the next generation of the same, added Walter Robinson, the Pulitzer Prize winning journalist behind the Boston Globe’s investigation into abuse in the Catholic church, as a distinguished professor of journalism last week.

“Walter Robinson will be a wonderful addition to our faculty,” School of Journalism Director Stephen Burgard said in an e-mail interview with The News. “He has a terrific range of journalistic experience that will provide our students with important insights about every kind of newspaper reporting.”

Robinson, called “Robby” by colleagues, graduated from Northeastern in 1974. He received an honorary doctorate last fall when he was at commencement.

Robinson spent over 30 years at The Globe, starting out as a co-op student in the early 1970s – to which he largely attributes his start in journalism.

“Northeastern is a natural fit for me,” he said. “I spent three years as the city editor in the mid-1990s, and a lot of the best and hungriest young writers that came through the door were Northeastern co-ops.”

For the past seven years, he has served as editor of the Spotlight Team, the paper’s investigative arm, and has been an assistant managing editor since 1993.

Robinson has covered several presidential campaigns, the White House and a variety of local political issues, and has reported stories in 48 states and 30 foreign countries.

Now that experience returns home to Northeastern.

“Robby has a special understanding of the nature of co-op and what makes our program special,” Burgard said.

Other members of the journalism faculty are also excited by the addition.

“I’m pleased that [Robinson] will be joining the faculty, because he’s one of Boston’s top journalists,” said Alan Schroeder, associate professor and head adviser in the school of journalism. “He has broken a number of important stories, and he received some of the profession’s most prestigious honors.”

Beginning next spring, Robinson will teach investigative journalism full-time at Northeastern, Schroeder said. He will also remain a part-time member of The Globe staff, working as a consultant and educating other journalists in the field.

In an e-mail to staff obtained by The News, Globe Editor in Chief Martin Baron wished Robinson well in his new endeavor.

“For some time now, Walter Robinson has talked with me about the possibility of doing something entirely different at this stage of his life and career,” Baron said. “I was hoping he would drop the subject. He hasn’t … Northeastern, his alma mater, could not hope for a more stellar recruit to its faculty.”

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