2023 Kansas Newspaper Hall of Fame

Congratulations to our Kansas Alumni

Patricia Weems Gaston

After a stellar career at the Washington Post, Patricia Weems Gaston joined the University of Kansas. She graduated from the William Allen White School of Journalism at KU in 1981 and added a master’s degree in sports management from The George Washington University. She is a William Allen White Trustee. Current Lacy C. Haynes Professor of Journalism and Professor of the practice at the William Allen White School of Journalism and Mass Communications. She is a 1994 Pulitzer Prize winner as co-editor of the series on violence against women at the Dallas Morning News.  

Bonita Gooch

Bonita Gooch has been a positive force in Kansas journalism since she bought The Community Voice in Wichita in 1996. Gooch earned her B.A. in journalism at the University of Kansas. The Community Voice, now in its 28th year, is a trusted source of news and information for the African-American communities of Kansas and the Kansas City Metro area. It is one of the largest non-daily newspapers in Kansas. She received the Kansas Department of Commerce and Housing's Minority Advocate Award in 1999. 

Steve Haynes

Steve Haynes began his professional newspaper career at the Kansas City Star. He eventually became the co-owner, publisher and editor of Haynes Publishing Co for nearly 30 years until his retirement. Haynes is a William Allen White Foundation Trustee.

Colleen McCain Nelson

Colleen McCain Nelson is the executive editor of the Sacramento Bee, McClatchy Regional Editor for California. She is a 2010 Pulitzer Prize winner and a William Allen White Trustee. She previously served as vice president and editorial page editor of the Kansas City Star and White House correspondent for the Wall Street Journal, covering the Obama White House for four years. McCain Nelson is also a member of the KU Women's Hall of Fame. 

Marjorie McLaughlin

Marjorie McLaughlin was the former publisher of the Miami County Republic. She was an integral part of the family that published newspapers in Paola for 84 years. She received a degree in English from the University of Kansas in 1938. 

Susanne Shaw

Susanne Shaw is a retired professor, graduate director and associate dean at the KU School of Journalism and Mass Communications. She is also the former executive director of the Accrediting Council on Education in Journalism. Shaw is a William Allen White Foundation Trustee and joined the KU journalism faculty in 1971. Shaw has dedicated five decades of her life to journalism education at the University of Kansas and worldwide. 

Vickie Walton-James

Vickie Walton-James is the managing editor for National Public Radio (NPR) who also led a team leading coverage of the terrorist attacks of 9/11 in Sept. 2001. She is responsible for newsgathering efforts of all NPR desks, shows and platforms. 

Katherine Klinkengerg White

Katherine Klinkenberg White is the former assistant curator at the Library of Congrats. She also edited William Allen White's Pulitzer Prize-winning autobiography. Klinkenberg White was a researcher for Time magazine and participated in a flyover of New York City with Amelia Earhart piloting the plane.  

Congratulations to our Affiliates

Jeannie Eblen

Jeannie Eblen is the former copy editor for the Kansas City Star and Lawrence Journal-World. She is the namesake of a scholarship given to KU JMC Students, "Tom and Jeannie Eblen in Honor of the Glorious Red Pen Scholarship." She copyedited multiple projects through the Kansas Press Association and helped maintain the KPA's library of more than 200 Kansas publications. Her husband, Tom Eblen, was the general manager of the University Dailey Kansan. Jeannie was known as the "newsroom mom." 

Sarah Kessinger

Sarah Kessinger is the editor and publisher of the Marysville Advocate. She is also a William Allen White Foundation Trustee. 

Susan Lynn

Susan Lynn has been the editor and publisher of the Iola Register since 2001, a year after joining her Fall of Fame father, Emerson Lynn, at the newspaper. She began her college career studying journalism at the University of Kansas. Susan is a William Allen White Foundation Trustee.