A new gift pledge from Adam Levin and the Philip and Janice Levin Foundation will establish the Levin Leaders Initiative, an expanded leadership development program for journalism students presented by the James M. Cox Jr. Institute for Journalism Innovation, Management and Leadership.
The Levin family’s gifts and pledges to the program to date exceed a quarter million dollars. The Cox Institute, part of the Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Georgia, launched its leadership program six years ago and has since trained 85 of the college’s best journalism students.
“The First Amendment is one of the cornerstones of U.S. democracy,” Levin said. “The Levin family is delighted to have our name associated with a program that has such demonstrated success in launching the careers of emerging news industry leaders. More than ever, we need to cultivate champions of the best journalistic ideals. It is essential to the fostering of an informed citizenry.”
The Levin family’s support provides for curriculum development, training materials, speaker expenses, experiential learning opportunities and the annual leadership awards banquet.
Charles Davis, dean of the Grady College, said the continued support of this program by Adam Levin and his wife, Heather McDowell, and the Philip and Janice Levin Foundation is a testament to our shared vision of preparing students for leadership roles in our democratic society. “They understand the vital mission of the news media and are with us as we help build its future,” Davis said.
Levin is a nationally recognized expert on cyber security, privacy, identity theft, fraud, and personal finance and has distinguished himself as a fierce consumer advocate for the past 40 years.
Former Director of the New Jersey Division of Consumer Affairs, Levin is chairman and founder of CyberScout and co-founder of Credit.com. He is author of the critically acclaimed book, “Swiped: How to Protect Yourself in a World Full of Scammers, Phishers, and Identity Thieves.”
His book first brought him to the University of Georgia as a keynote speaker in a privacy issues conference co-sponsored by the Cox Institute, and he has returned several times to speak at Grady about privacy and cyber security. Levin has engaged with many Grady students during his visits and said their caliber and commitment inspired the decision to support a training program that looks to the future of the news media.
Levin’s mission is to educate consumers, businesses, law enforcement officials and lawmakers on identity management and protection, privacy, credit, and election security issues, which has resulted in the publication of his articles in numerous national news outlets. Levin is also a regular on national television and radio programs where he provides expert commentary.
“Levin’s extensive work with the news media provides him with a unique perspective. He understands why professional and ethical standards are important and sees the value in our training and the difference it makes in shaping the careers of emerging news leaders,” said Keith Herndon, director of the Cox Institute. “We are delighted to have the Levin family name on our program and the support it represents as we expand and enhance this initiative.”