The National Press Club Journalism Institute promotes an engaged global citizenry through an independent and free press, and equips journalists with skills and standards to inform the public in ways that inspire a more representative democracy. As the non-profit affiliate of the National Press Club, the Institute powers journalism in the public interest.

The Institute accomplishes this mission by: offering programs to grow the number of people who produce and support journalism that drives civic engagement; protecting journalists from interference so they can fully and fairly represent the communities they serve; and increasing transparency to keep citizens well-informed and their governments and institutions accountable.

The Institute’s 2022-2024 strategic plan was approved in 2021. You can read it here and view a list of the Institute’s guiding principles here.

Board of Directors

President: Gil Klein past National Press Club president
Treasurer:  Paul Merrion, former Washington Bureau Chief for Crain’s Chicago Business
Secretary: Andrea Edney, past National Press Club president

Board Members:

Danielle Coffey News Media Alliance

Sam Feist CNN

Michael Freedman past National Press Club president

Mara Gassmann, First Amendment attorney

Tom Huang Dallas Morning News

Richard Hutzell Fallen Journalists Memorial Foundation

Jen Judson past National Press Club President, Defense News

Anita Kumar Politico

Paul Minehart, Syngenta

Eileen O’Reilly National Press Club President, Axios

Mizell Stewart III Emerging Leaders, LLC

Emily Wilkins, Bloomberg Government


Beth Francesco, Executive Director
[email protected]
Beth leads the National Press Club Journalism Institute, where she manages the team and daily operations, coordinates with the board on strategy, produces professional development programs and training resources, and handles fundraising and events. Prior, she worked behind the scenes to support revenue strategies, create and lead student-focused initiatives and scholarships, handled special projects, and produced programs focused on diversifying newsrooms and coverage. For 10 years, she directed the nationally recognized Student Publications unit at the University of Texas at Arlington. A longtime freelancer for national magazines and regional publications, she started her career in journalism as a copy editor and designer – and later city editor – for the Corpus Christi (Texas) Caller-Times. 

Beth is a 2022-23 Fellow with the Reynolds Journalism Institute at the University of Missouri-Columbia. A frequent presenter at journalism conventions and workshops, Beth received the Associated Collegiate Press’s Pioneer Award in 2022 and was named Adviser of the Year by the Texas Intercollegiate Press Association in 2017. She’s long held leadership positions with journalism nonprofits, having served as interim executive director with the Texas Community College Journalism Association; board member and vice president of programs for the Society of Professional Journalists’ Fort Worth chapter; and president and board member for TIPA. She authored a book, “100 Front Pages,” to celebrate The Shorthorn’s centennial celebration. Beth has a B.A. from the University of Texas at Arlington and a M.A. from the University of North Texas. 

Holly Butcher Grant, Growth Manager
[email protected]
Holly Butcher Grant joined the Institute as Learning Manager in March 2020. Prior to her work with the Institute, she was a Marketing Specialist at law firm Foley Hoag LLP, where she managed content and social media strategy, in addition to building an events and distance learning program to educate existing and potential clients. Before that, she worked at Converge Venture Partners supporting a portfolio of early-stage technology companies and planning events for a network of angel investors. She holds a master’s degree in online journalism from the University of Southern California’s Annenberg School, where she served as senior arts editor for Annenberg Digital News. Before graduate school, she worked in the entertainment industry as an agent trainee at William Morris Endeavor and United Talent Agency.

About the Eric Friedheim National Journalism Library

The Journalism Institute oversees the  Eric Friedheim National Journalism Library of the National Press Club, which offers research services and database access to members. The library also features journalism books, a Bloomberg terminal and Reuters wires access. For questions about use or research support, please contact [email protected].