Rod Hicks is director of ethics and diversity at the Society of Professional Journalists. He creates projects, conducts training, gives speeches and writes stories about the need for journalists to adhere to high ethical standards and produce stories inclusive of the entire community.
Previously at SPJ, Rod was in a position created to address the issue of dwindling trust in the news media. As journalist on call, he conducted a six-month project in Casper, Wyoming, where he met regularly with a group of people skeptical about the news they receive. The aim was to better understand the root of their distrust. He wrote a report on the project that included recommendations for news organizations to address news consumers’ concerns.
Before joining SPJ, Rod was an editor for The Associated Press in Philadelphia and has held editing positions at newspapers in New Jersey, Alabama, Michigan and Missouri. At the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Rod played a key role in coverage of a deadly city hall mass shooting that was a finalist for a Pulitzer Prize.