Bill Drummond

Permanent Faculty


William J. Drummond’s career includes stints at The (Louisville) Courier-Journal, where he covered the civil rights movement, and the Los Angeles Times, where he was a local reporter, then bureau chief in New Delhi and Jerusalem and later a Washington correspondent. Drummond was appointed a White House Fellow in 1976 by President Gerald R. Ford, worked briefly for Secretary of State Henry Kissinger and eventually became associate press secretary to President Jimmy Carter. In 1977 he joined NPR and became the founding editor of Morning Edition. He joined the Berkeley faculty in July, 1983.

In addition to teaching students at UC Berkeley, Drummond twice taught an introductory journalism course pro bono under auspices of the Prison University Project for dozens of inmates at San Quentin Prison in the Summer of 2012 and the Fall 2014 Semester.

Among the many awards Drummond has received in his career, these are the most prominent: Recipient National Press Club Foundation award, 1980, Chancellor’s Distinguished Lecturer, University California, Berkeley, 1982, Edwin M. Hood award for Excellence in diplomatic corres., 1983, award of Excellence for outstanding coverage of Black condition, National Association Black Journalists, 1989; Roy W. Howard Award, Scripps Howard Foundation, 1991; 2014 Barry Bingham Fellowship, the Association of Opinion Journalists; John Gardner Legacy of Leadership Award, White House Fellows Foundation, 2015; Leon A. Henkin Citation for Distinguished Service, UC Berkeley, 2016. The citation of the John Gardner Award read as follows:

John W. Gardner challenged all White House Fellows to commit to a lifetime of public service: to return to their communities after their Fellowship year and become agents of change and renewal, and to work to strengthen the White House Fellows Program. Bill Drummond has met John Gardner’s challenge. By any measure, Bill has lived all the values of the White House Fellows program. His life is one of great personal and professional achievement, leadership, and selfless service to community and country.

His most significant recent contribution to journalism came through the partnership he established with the San Quentin News beginning in the summer of 2012. His work with the San Quentin News brought national and international attention to California’s mass incarceration crisis. In 2015 Chancellor Nicholas Dirks gave Drummond a public service award for for his teaching and research at San Quentin.

The San Quentin News has been featured prominently in news stories from coast to coast, and around the world. Prof. Drummond’s own teaching efforts were the subject of a page-one story in the Los Angeles Times and the Daily Mail, the most widely read newspaper website in the world. The numerous citations of his San Quentin work have kept the name of the UC Berkeley School of Journalism at the forefront of the national discussion about incarceration policy.

The Northern California chapter of the Society for Professional Journalists gave San Quentin News its James Madison Freedom of Information Award, and the citation made specific mention of Drummond’s contribution and that of UC Berkeley students. The Association of Opinion Journalists gave him the Barry Bingham Sr. Fellowship in Journalism for his efforts on behalf of bringing underrepresented groups into journalism. As mentioned above, Chancellor Dirks honored Drummond with an Award for Public Service, recognizing his community-engaged scholarship, specifically for the San Quentin News project.

During more than 30 years on the Berkeley faculty, Drummond has been a leader and defender of faculty independence and governance.

Drummond was selected by his peers on the Berkeley faculty to serve as Chair of the Academic Senate for two consecutive terms, 2006-7 and 2007-8. He is the only person in the history of UC Berkeley to have completed two consecutive terms.

Besides prison policy, his research interest lies in incorporating stress-reduction techniques into journalism education. He holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of California, Berkeley and a master’s degree from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. He is a certified massage therapist and holds a private pilot’s license with an instrument rating.


  • MS, Columbia University, 1966;
    BA, University Calif.-Berkeley, 1965


  • White House Fellows Assn.


Sec. Title Time Location

011 J294 Master’s Project Seminar – Drummond
Fall 2019
By appt. By appointment
004 J298 Race and Media
Fall 2019
F 1:00 - 4:00 209 North Gate (Greenhouse)
006 J298 San Quentin Editing
Fall 2019
TBD To be determined
10 J298 Examining Racial Undertones in the American Election
Spring 2019
M 2:00 -4:30 B1 North Gate