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Associated Press reporter Meg Kinnard visits with UT Martin students


Contact 1: Erin Chesnut


MARTIN, Tenn. – Meg Kinnard Hardee, a political and legal affairs reporter with The Associated Press who bylines as Meg Kinnard, visited the University of Tennessee at Martin, Feb. 13, to speak with students from the university’s Department of Communications. Her presentations stressed the importance of objective journalism and reliable information sources.

“You really can’t come to the answer of whatever the problem is unless you’re listening to the other side,” she said. “You don’t have to go all the way to where they are, and you don’t have to stay there, but you do at least have to ingest what they are saying in a thoughtful way and respect it.”

She also urged students to stay at the forefront of new technology and be prepared to adapt to changing news formats.

“There is no such thing as ‘just a print journalist’ or ‘just a radio journalist’…. Everybody is multiformat these days. While you’re in school, you have all these training tools available to you. Use them. Practice with them; be comfortable with them,” she said. “Tomorrow Fox News could be calling wanting you to commentate on whatever they are talking about.”

Kinnard, who served as UT Martin’s Fall 2017 commencement speaker, is celebrating 12 years with The Associated Press and has reported on all levels of politics – from local to international – from her home base in South Carolina. She reported extensively on the 2016 presidential race and traveled with both the Sanders and Rubio campaigns.

Kinnard grew up in Memphis and is the only grandchild of the late 8th-District Congressman Ed Jones. She and her husband, Geoffrey Hardee, are co-authors of the upcoming biography “Grassroots Politickin’: The Life and Legacy of Ed Jones.”

She and Hardee are dedicated UT Martin supporters and have contributed to several university scholarships and special funds, including the Ed and Llew Jones Distinguished Lecture Series.

This series is responsible for the appearance of Dr. Temple Grandin, renowned animal behaviorist and autism spokesperson, on the UT Martin campus Feb. 13.

Kinnard holds a Bachelor of Science in Foreign Service in International Politics/International Security Studies from the Walsh School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C., and has completed internships with The Washington Post and the United States House of Representatives Committee for Government Reform. 


PHOTO ID: Meg Kinnard Hardee, a political and legal affairs reporter with The Associated Press who bylines as Meg Kinnard, speaks with UT Martin students

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