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CPB Taps Schaffer to Serve as Ombudsman

She is a Pulitzer Prize winning former journalist and founder and executive director of J-Lab

The Corporation for Public Broadcasting has named Jan Schaffer as ombudsman for a three-year term, effective May 1. She succeeds former Washington Post Senior Editor Milton Coleman, whose term expired.

In this role, Schaffer will be responsible for reviewing and reporting on issues concerning public media programming.

Schaffer is a Pulitzer Prize winning former journalist who currently serves as founder and executive director of J-Lab, an organization that funds and researches innovative approaches to journalism. In her earlier career, she was a federal court reporter in Philadelphia.

Schaffer recently finished a journalism practitioner’s residency at the Rockefeller Foundation’s Bellagio Center in Italy. She has taught Social Journalism at CUNY’s Graduate School of Journalism and Media Entrepreneurship at American University’s School of Communication and is a former fellow at the Tow Center for Digital Journalism at Columbia University.

She currently serves on the Advisory Board of LION [Local Independent Online News] Publishers and has served as an advisor for the Ethics and Excellence in Journalism Foundation and SXSW Accelerator.

The Corporation for Public Broadcasting is a private, nonprofit corporation created by Congress in 1967. It helps support the operations of nearly 1,500 locally owned and operated public television and radio stations nationwide. In 2005, CPB established the Office of the Ombudsman in April 2005 as an independent office to help advance standards of journalistic integrity in public media.