John Hamilton

John Maxwell Hamilton

Jack Hamilton

Hopkins P. Breazeale Professor of Journalism
Louisiana State University
Baton Rouge, Louisiana

Global Fellow
Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars
Washington, DC

Jack Hamilton, a long-time journalist, author, and public servant, is the Hopkins P. Breazeale Professor in LSU’s Manship School of Mass Communication and a Global Fellow at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars.  

As a journalist, Hamilton reported for the Milwaukee Journal, the Christian Science Monitor, and ABC radio.  He was a longtime commentator for MarketPlace, broadcast nationally by Public Radio International.  His work also has appeared in the New York Times, Foreign Affairs, and The Nation.

In government, Hamilton oversaw nuclear non-proliferation issues for the House Foreign Affairs Committee, served in the State Department during the Carter administration as an advisor to head of the U.S. foreign aid program in Asia, and managed a World Bank program to educate Americans about economic development.  He served in Vietnam as a Marine Corps platoon commander and in Okinawa as a reconnaissance company commander.

In his twenty years as an LSU administrator, Hamilton was founding dean of the Manship School and executive vice-chancellor and provost.

Hamilton serves on the board of the International Center for Journalists, of which he is treasurer, and was formerly on the board of Lamar Corporation, listed on Nasdaq as the largest outdoor advertising company in the U.S. as measured by number of displays.  He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and is on the Historical Advisory Board of the U.S. World War One Centennial Commission.

In the course of his career, Hamilton has had assignments in more than 50 countries.  In addition to covering foreign news, Hamilton has written extensively on foreign newsgathering and sought to improve it.  In the mid-1980s he created and directed a Society of Professional Journalist’s project to develop techniques for local reporting of foreign news, especially on relations with developing countries.  He later contributed to a similar project for the American Society of Newspaper Editors.  In the 1980s, the National Journal said Hamilton has shaped public opinion about the complexity of U.S.-Third World relations “more than any other single journalist.”

Hamilton’s two most recent books are Journalism’s Roving Eye: A History of American Newsgathering Abroadand Manipulating the Masses: Woodrow Wilson and the Birth of American Propaganda. Each of them won the Goldsmith Book Prize, as well as other awards.  Other books include Main Street America and the Third World;Entangling Alliances: How the Third World Shapes Our Lives; Edgar Snow: A Biography; Hold the Press: The Inside Story on Newspapers (with George Krimsky); and Casanova Was a Book Lover: And Other Naked Truths and Provocative Curiosities about the Writing, Selling, and Reading of Books.  He is editor of the LSU Press book series “From Our Correspondent.”

Hamilton received the Freedom Forum’s Administrator of the Year Award in 2003.  Other honors include two Green Eyeshade Excellence in Journalism Awards, the By-Line Award from Marquette University, and an MLK Day diversity award from LSU.  He has received funding from the Carnegie and Ford Foundations, among others.  In 2002 he was a Shorenstein Fellow at Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government and from 2019-2020 was a senior associate at the Center for Strategic & International Studies. He has served twice as a Pulitzer Prize jurist. He is a member of the Metropolitan Club of Washington.

Hamilton earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in journalism from Marquette and Boston Universities respectively, and a doctorate in American Civilization from George Washington University.