College of Letters, Arts & Social Sciences
School of Journalism and Mass Media
Director and Associate Professor
Campus Locations: Moscow
With UI Since 1999
Ph.D. Washington State University: American Studies (1999)
M.Ed. University of Wales: Journalism History (1980)
B.A. University of Idaho: Journalism-News Editorial (1976)
Political reporting: Media history
American politics: The relationship between public opinion and public policy
Kenton Bird has been director of the School of Journalism and Mass Media since 2003. Kenton holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Idaho, where he was editor of the student newspaper, the Argonaut. He attended University College, Cardiff, Wales, on a Rotary fellowship, earning a master’s degree in journalism history, and Washington State University, earning a Ph.D. in American Studies. His dissertation was a study of the political career of Thomas Foley, former speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives.
During his 15-year career as a reporter and editor, Kenton worked for newspapers in Moscow, Lewiston, Sandpoint and Kellogg, Idaho, and spent a summer working at the Washington Post. In 1989, he was chosen as a congressional fellow of the American Political Science Association, working as a congressional staff member in Washington, D.C. Kenton spent three years on the faculty at Colorado State University before returning to the UI in 1999 as a full-time faculty member.
In 2002, Kenton was one of three UI faculty members chosen to be a Humanities Fellow of the College of Letters, Arts & Social Sciences. He was on sabbatical in New Zealand during the spring and summer of 2010.
- Reporting That Matters: A Look at Public Affairs Coverage From a New But Grounded Perspective, textbook, with John Irby, Susan English and David Cuillier, Allyn & Bacon, 2007.
- Brandon Rottinghaus, Kenton Bird, Rebecca Self and Travis Ridout. “It’s Better than Being Informed’: College Aged Viewers of the Daily Show and the Effects of Humor on News Seeking, Consumption and Retention.” In Laughing Matters: Humor and American Politics in the Media Age, edited by Jonathan Morris and Jody Baumgartner, Routledge, 2007.
- "Sarah Palin's a journalist, too," British Journal Review, December 2008, Vol. 19, Issue 4.
- Community newspapers
- Civic engagement
- Public involvement