Meet the 2013-2014 fellows

Marquette University’s J. William and Mary Diederich College of Communication has now chosen a total of seven journalists to take part in The Perry and Alicia O’Brien Fellowship in Public Service Journalism. Known as O’Brien Fellows, each journalist chosen for the fellowship spends an academic year on campus researching and producing an in-depth public service journalism project – and working with Marquette students, giving them first-hand experience.

The 2013-2014 O’Brien Fellows are Hal Bernton of The Seattle Times, Dan Egan of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel and Lillian Thomas of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. They began their fellowships in August 2013 and are residing within the college for this academic year.

“All of the journalists chosen as O’Brien Fellows have worked diligently throughout their careers to provide solutions to the most complex problems in their communities,” said Dr. Lori Bergen, dean of the College of Communication. “Our faculty and staff appreciate the chance to work closely with them to encourage progress as they work side by side with our students to provide expert, in-depth reporting.” Bergen has described the fellowship as in-line with “the teaching hospital model” advocated by many journalists and journalism educators nationwide.


Hal Bernton, The Seattle Times

Hal Bernton Hal Bernton has been a reporter with The Seattle Times since 2000. He received the Gerald R. Ford Prize for national defense reporting in 2013 and was a Pulitzer finalist in 2003 for his work with other Seattle Times reporters on “The Terrorist Within.” In 1989, he was part of a team that won the Pulitzer Prize for Public Service for “People in Peril,” a series published by The Anchorage Daily News about Alaska’s native peoples.



Dan Egan, The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

Dan Egan Dan Egan has been covering the Great Lakes for The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel since 2003. He was a Pulitzer finalist for explanatory reporting in both 2013 and 2010. Egan won the Oakes Award for environmental journalism in 2006 and has received four National Headliner Awards for environmental and science reporting.



Lillian Thomas, The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Lillian Thomas is assistant managing editor of special projects at The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Since late 2012, her investigative team has broken dozens of stories about a federal investigation of the city of Pittsburgh that led to charges against the police chief, who resigned, and now has begun to focus on the city’s mayor. Thomas has also been a reporter, city editor and Sunday editor for The Post-Gazette.



Learn about the new 2014-2015 fellows.