Lester Holt Among New CPJ Board Members

The Committee to Protect Journalists has named three new members to its board of directors, adding one veteran broadcast journalist and print editors from both coasts.

New to the board are NBC Nightly News and Dateline anchor Lester Holt, Wall Street Journal and Dow Jones Newswires editor-in-chief Matt Murray, and L.A. Times executive editor Norman Pearlstine.

Holt recently received the Sol Taishoff Award from the National Press Foundation. The award is named after the late B&C founder.

"Our profession is under attack every day, from network news broadcasts to local community papers in every corner of the world.

And that's why the job of journalists—to shine light in dark places and hold the powerful accountable—has never been more important," said Holt. "I'm proud to join CPJ's fight to ensure my colleagues across the globe can continue to report, to question, to seek answers and to inform. It's our mission."

Holt was a guest of CPJ at the Times Square New Year's Eve ball-drop, which was dedicated to press freedom.

"Lester, Norm, and Matt are powerful newsroom leaders and we are delighted they are joining the CPJ board of directors," said Kathleen Carroll, chair of the CPJ board. "They know firsthand how treacherous newsgathering has become around the globe. Their voices will be invaluable in CPJ's ceaseless efforts to protect journalists from the despots, autocrats, thugs, and criminals who menace them."

CPJ did not say whether the President fell into any of those categories, though it has registered ongoing, and strong, concern that his attacks on journalists as "fake news" and "enemies of the people," which the President leveled at the New York Times in an ALL CAP tweet Wednesday (Feb. 20), and the White House's equivocal response to the killing of dissident Saudi and Washington Post journalist Jamal Khashoggi, have made journalists less safe. "Essentially, Trump signaled that countries that do enough business with the United States are free to murder journalists without consequence," CPJ said in its December report on the killing of journalists.

John Eggerton

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.