Pulitzer Prize Winner

Barrows named interim adviser to The East Carolinian


East Carolina University has hired Pulitzer Prize winning journalist Frank Barrows, former managing editor for the Charlotte Observer, to serve as interim advisor for The East Carolinian, the student-run newspaper.



Barrows will serve in a consultant advisory role that oversees the day-to-day publication and online needs of students with The East Carolinian newspaper. He began work Feb. 6.

“We continue to show our support for our students at The East Carolinian and providing a skilled, trusted resource to advise them has been a high priority,” said Dr. Virginia Hardy, vice chancellor for student affairs.

Hardy said this step is one of many the university has taken to reorganize and strengthen its student media, which also includes the Buccaneer, channel 31 and the Rebel.

Barrows’ career spans five decades in journalism and includes 13 years as managing editor of the Charlotte Observer, the largest daily newspaper for the Carolinas. In that role he directed newsgathering efforts, overseeing a staff of 240 and an $18 million annual budget.

Barrows was one of two local-news editors whose hands-on supervision guided the extensive 1987 reporting on evangelist Jim Bakker that earned the Pulitzer Gold Medal, print journalism’s highest honor.

“Frank Barrows’ impressive journalistic career makes him the perfect person to ensure that the students’ rights are protected, while at the same time offering all the guidance necessary to make challenging and often difficult, decisions every day,” Hardy said.

He will provide journalistic expertise to students in news reporting, feature writing and story development, online journalism, editing, photography, formatting and layout, production techniques and processes, business operations, communications and public relations.

His role includes working on campus as well as regular and consistent communication with The East Carolinian’s editor-in-chief and student journalists via phone, conference call and other means as necessary.

While working with The East Carolinian students, Barrows will also assist in developing a strong orientation/training plan for incoming and outgoing student news staff and provide recommendations for building more consistent and sustainable long term business plans for The East Carolinian.

About Frank Barrows

  • Under his leadership the Charlotte Observer won hundreds of state and national journalism awards for its coverage, most notably for investigative journalism and public service. Barrows served in multiple roles, from a sports columnist to projects reporting and news and feature editing.
  • Co-founder and first president of the North Carolina Open Government Coalition.
  • President and founding member, Greater Charlotte chapter of Society of Professional Journalists.
  • Member, American Society of News Editors, serving on that organization’s ethics and values committee.
  • Chaired Knight Ridder newspapers’ company-wide credibility and standards committee.
  • As a sports journalist focused on basketball, but also covered stock car racing, the summer Olympics and college football.
  • Currently a monthly columnist for Charlotte Magazine, and has written for a number of national publications.
  • Majored in political science at St. Andrews University in Laurinburg and pursued that subject at the University of Virginia’s graduate school. Studied the management of innovation at Harvard Business School during the 2007-2008 academic year.
  • Won the Ethel Fortner Writer and Community Award in 2000.

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