Michael Bolden joins Student Press Law Center Board 

white logo saying SPLC and Student Press Law Center on a bright blue background

For immediate release: March 18, 2022
For more information: Hadar Harris, hharris@splc.org

WASHINGTON — The Student Press Law Center is delighted to welcome media, education and nonprofit veteran Michael Bolden to its Board of Directors to serve its mission to support, promote and defend the First Amendment rights of student journalists and their advisers at the high school and college levels. 

Michael is the newly appointed executive director and CEO of the American Press Institute, which helps transform newsrooms for an audience-centered future. Prior to that, he was director of culture and operations at The San Francisco Chronicle and a member of the newsroom’s executive leadership team. In that role he supervised a range of coverage, including business, housing, immigration, race and equity, technology, transportation, and urban design and development. He also tried to foster an internal culture that values diversity and belonging and helps Chronicle journalists develop their full potential.  

Previously, he was a journalism lecturer at Stanford University and managing director of the John S. Knight Journalism Fellowships, where he advised media change agents from around the world. He also served as editorial director for the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, a leading funder of journalism and media innovation. For more than a decade, he was an editor at The Washington Post in positions across the newsroom. He’s also been a reporter and editor in Florida and Louisiana.  

Michael is a graduate of the University of Alabama, was a Maynard Media Academy Fellow at Harvard University and is working on his Master of Liberal Arts thesis at Stanford. He also serves on the boards of directors of the SPJ Foundation, the nonprofit that supports a free press, and EdSource, a nonprofit engaging Californians on key education issues.

“Michael represents the best of thought leadership in journalism,” said Jane McDonnell, chair of the SPLC Board. “We are looking forward to the insights and expertise he’ll bring to help us build on our new strategic plan and respond to the needs of student journalists, which are growing more challenging by the day.”

SPLC’s Board of Directors consists of up to 15 volunteers from across the fields of journalism, education, law, philanthropy and nonprofit management. Board members serve for three-year terms which are renewable for one additional term. 

The Student Press Law Center (splc.org, @splc) is an independent, nonpartisan 501(c)(3) nonprofit working at the intersection of law, journalism and education to support, promote and defend the rights of student journalists and their advisers at the high school and college levels. Based in Washington, D.C., the Student Press Law Center provides information, training and legal assistance at no charge to student journalists and the educators who work with them.