Atwood Chair of Journalism

The Atwood Chair of Journalism was established at the University of Alaska Anchorage in 1979 by Robert B. Atwood, publisher of the Anchorage Times, and his wife, Evangeline Atwood, to help advance the quality of journalism in Alaska.

The professorship offers UAA students, faculty, media professionals and the public the opportunity to interact with and learn from journalists of national prominence.

Meet Our Current Atwood Chair Larry Persily

Larry Persily

Larry Persily brings almost 50 years of journalism and  public policy experience to his new position as the Atwood Chair of Journalism at the University of Alaska Anchorage for the 2019-2020 school year.

Persily’s journalism career began in 1969 as a college newspaper reporter and continued for the next 30 years. Although he took leave from the profession periodically during the past two decades to work on public policy in federal, state and municipal government, he has returned of late to journalism to help out at the Chilkat Valley News in Haines, the Nome Nugget, Peninsula Clarion in Kenai, and writing for the Alaska Journal of Commerce on topics of critical concern to Alaskans. He also will take over as owner/publisher of The Skagway News on April 1 as he looks to help Alaska’s smaller newspapers.

Persily’s wealth of knowledge and experience in natural resource and budgetary issues will serve JPC students and the UAA community well.

“My work in government will be beneficial to helping students understand not just the policy issues and how to report on them,” Persily said, “but how to cultivate sources, conduct research and look for the stories that seldom are in plain sight.”

"I want students to learn how to find a fact, how to separate facts from fiction -- and to understand the importance of their work."

Persily brings a wide diversity of experience to the Atwood Chair and is looking forward to meeting the Chair’s purpose of advancing quality journalism in Alaska.