Broadcast TV Leader is Keynote Speaker for MSPA Spring Convention

More than 500 journalism students are expected to attend March 21 event at UM

Emily Barr

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OXFORD, Miss. – The president and CEO of a national television broadcasting division has been named speaker for the Pam Hamilton Keynote Address at the Mississippi Scholastic Press Association statewide spring convention.

Emily Barr, president and chief executive officer of Graham Media Group – the television broadcasting division of Graham Holdings Co. – will give the keynote address at the MSPA spring high school journalism convention March 31 at the University of Mississippi. MSPA conventions are the largest gatherings of high school journalists in the state, usually with more than 500 attendees.

“She’s a national-level media expert and one of the most accomplished women in the entire broadcast industry,” said R.J. Morgan, MSPA director. “She’s also passionate about educating young people, so she was a natural fit for such a key slot at our convention. We’re really excited to have her join us.”

Barr oversees seven local media hubs, each in a top-70 market, representing just more than 7 percent coverage in the U.S., Morgan said. The TV stations, web and mobile platforms are recognized as news leaders across the media spectrum: KPRC-Houston (NBC); WDIV-Detroit (NBC); WKMG- Orlando (CBS); KSAT-San Antonio (ABC); a duopoly in Jacksonville: WJXT (fully local) and WCWJ (CW); and WSLS-Roanoke (NBC).

Barr serves on the boards of The Associated Press and the Television Bureau of Advertising. She is the chairman for television for the National Association of Broadcasters and serves on the National Association of Broadcasters Leadership Foundation.

Honored for her civic involvement, Barr is the 2018 recipient of the Golden Mike Award from the Broadcasters Foundation of America and was awarded the Vincent T. Wasilewski Broadcaster of the Year by the Illinois Broadcasters Association in 2014.

Barr and other professional journalists, educators, photographers, videographers and entrepreneurs from across the South will be sharing their skills with students in more than 40 sessions at the convention. Students also can compete for awards in MSPA mail-in or carry-in contests.

Whether students’ interests are in journalism, social media, news writing, feature writing, page design, photography, yearbook, web publishing, broadcast, literary magazine or leadership, Morgan said the spring convention at Ole Miss offers something for everyone.

Registration is $25 per student, which includes breakfast and lunch. Adviser registration is free. To learn more or to register, visit and click on state conventions.

The hashtag for the event is #MSPA20.

For accommodations related to a disability to attend the event, contact Sarah Griffith at 662-915-7146 or For more information about  programs at the UM School of Journalism and New Media, visit