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Johnson Center for Journalism and Communication

The mission of the Johnson Center for Journalism and Communication is to produce culture-shaping Christians in the field of print and electronic journalism. Founded in 2008 thanks to the generous support of Gene and Kathy Johnson, the center brings some of the world’s finest Christian journalists to campus to teach and inspire students through special one-on-one workshops and classes on such topics as business reporting, international journalism, and covering religion.

With their passion for journalism and vision for ministry, the Johnsons have supported an exemplary journalism program in which students receive top-notch training in professional journalism within the context of a Christian worldview.

Enriching the student experience

The Johnson Center has funded:

  • Student media internships
  • Campus workshops with world-class Christian journalists
  • Journalists who participate in a yearly "Topics in Journalism" class
  • Bethel conferences on faith and journalism
  • Student registrations for national journalism conferences
  • An annual summer high school journalism camp
  • Equipment, books, and resources for journalism classes

Johnson Center interns have served at prestigious publications, including:

  • Minneapolis Star-Tribune
  • St. Paul Pioneer Press
  • Kansas City Star
  • Christianity Today magazine
  • Miami Herald

The Johnson Center has educated and trained Bethel students who have gone on to work in various multimedia areas:

  • Newspapers
  • Magazines
  • Movies and documentaries
  • Photography
  • Online editorial
  • Blogs and social media

Outstanding journalists have visited campus for lectures and workshops:

  • Manny Garcia, executive editor of El Nuevo Herald
  • Ray Suarez, broadcast journalist with PBS NewsHour
  • Krista Tippett, host of American Public Media's "On Being"
  • Fred de Sam Lazaro, director of the Under-Told Stories Project on PBS
  • Paul Glader, former reporter with the Wall Street Journal
  • Bill McKibben, author, environmentalist, and founder of 350.org
  • Stephan David, former correspondent with India Today in Bangalore

Interested Bethel students can apply for funding from the Johnson Center.

About the Johnsons

Gene and Kathy Johnson are owners of Press Publications, a group of community newspapers and shoppers in Minnesota and Wisconsin headquartered in White Bear Lake, Minnesota. A national leader in newspaper publishing, Gene has served as president of the Minnesota Newspaper Association, the National Newspaper Association, and Suburban Newspapers of America.

Advisory Board

The Johnson Center Advisory Board was established to support the outreach of the Johnson Center for Journalism and Communication and to extend the influence of Bethel’s journalism program.

Adam Belz
Staff Reporter, Minneapolis Star Tribune
Minneapolis, Minnesota

Dave Berggren '04
Senior Multimedia Communication Specialist, Medtronic
Minneapolis, Minnesota

Monique Kleinhuizen '08 GS'16
New Media Strategist, Bethel University
St. Paul, Minnesota

Manny Garcia
East Region Executive Editor, USA Today Network
Naples, Florida

Paul Glader
Associate Professor of Journalism, The King's College
New York City, New York

Christa Hillstrom
Web editor, YES! Magazine
Seattle, Washington
Founder of www.humangoods.net

Carter Johnson
Publisher, Press Publications
White Bear Lake, Minnesota

David Kansas
Director, Johnson Center for Journalism and Communication
Chief Operating Officer, Minnesota Public Radio/American Public Media Group
St. Paul, Minnesota

Nicolle Mackinnon '09
Editor, Lake Minnetonka Magazine (Tiger Oak Communications)
Minneapolis, Minnesota

John Neibergall
Senior Development Officer, Bethel University
St. Paul, Minnesota

Rohan Preston
Theater critic, Star Tribune
St. Paul, Minnesota

Chris Tompkins '07
Interaction Designer and Researcher, Google
Mountain View, California