JLI Adds Two Members to its Board of Directors

Public Relations and Media Executives Amira Barger and Ritch Colbert Join Journalistic Learning Initiative Board

October 4, 2021 (Eugene, Ore.) – The non-profit Journalistic Learning Initiative (JLI) recently added two new members to its board, bringing the total number of board members to six.

*Amira Barger, MBA, CVA, CFRE, is executive vice president of Health, Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion at Edelman, the world’s largest public relations firm with 6,000 employees. Previously, she was at Ogilvy & Mather. Barger is a strategy consultant and adjunct instructor of marketing and communications at California State University – East Bay. She partners with brands to craft targeted public relations campaigns critical to the nation’s well-being. Her expertise is in the public, nonprofit, and private sectors. Barger is also a speaker and consultant on strategic planning, marketing, communications, fundraising, and volunteerism. She is based in northern California near San Francisco.

*Ritch Colbert is an established entrepreneur with expertise in series television, digital media, program sales and acquisition, and broad-spectrum business development strategies, working in the United States and international media markets across all platforms, existing and emerging. He is a principal and founder at PPI Releasing, a full-service media distribution company focusing on the needs of content buyers, licensees, and distributors, and finding talent and products to meet those needs effectively and efficiently. Colbert lives in Los Angeles.

“We are delighted to add two seasoned media professionals to our executive leadership team,” said JLI Co-founder and Executive Director Ed Madison, Ph.D. “We hope our board will leverage its collective leadership experience to guide JLI in its next phase of growth to scale our impact within Oregon’s communities of need.”

Founded in 2015, in collaboration with the University of Oregon School of Journalism and College of Education, the JLI empowers students to discover their voice, improve academic outcomes, and engage in self-directed learning through project-based storytelling. Students learn to research, interview, write, edit, and collaborate, making them more effective communicators. Since its inception, JLI has helped more than 5,000 young people in Oregon and California succeed.


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