New Professorship Honors Klan-Fighting Journalist

The children of a Klan-fighting journalist who won a Pulitzer Prize have established a $1 million professorship in his honor at the School of Journalism and Mass Communication.

The W. Horace Carter Distinguished Professorship was created by Carter’s son, Russell M. “Rusty” Carter ’71, a member of the UNC Board of Trustees, and daughters, Velda Carter Hughes ’76 and Linda Carter Metzger to help extend the impact of their father’s legacy. Horace Carter is a member of UNC’s class of 1943.

Carter’s storied career as a journalist includes a campaign in the 1950s against the Ku Klux Klan resulting in more than 100 convictions of Klansmen. Carter and his Tabor City Tribune won the Pulitzer Prize for meritorious public service in 1953 for the campaign waged in the face of violence and repeated threats.

It was the first weekly newspaper to win a Pulitzer.

The professorship honors Carter’s commitment to journalism and gives the school a new tool to recruit and retain the best journalism teachers and scholars in the nation. Faculty members receiving the Carter Professorship will advance the ideals of public service and courage in journalism by training students to be principled leaders in journalism for generations to come.

“Horace Carter has shown the power of journalistic courage,” said Jean Folkerts, dean of the school. “In order to do the right thing, we sometimes must take a stand for an unpopular cause and go against mainstream thoughts in a particular time.”

While at Carolina, Carter was the editor of The Tar Heel, which later became The Daily Tar Heel. After leaving Carolina in 1943, Carter founded The Tribune in 1946. Carter still owns The Tribune, which is published by the company he founded, Atlantic Publishing. He continues to write columns for the paper, has published more than 2,000 magazine articles and has written more than 20 books.

Carter donated his Pulitzer gold medal to the School of Journalism and Mass Communication in 1991 to inspire future journalists to fight for justice and high principles. He was inducted into the N.C. Journalism Hall of Fame in 1983; received an honorary degree from Carolina in 2000; and was awarded the Order of the Long Leaf Pine, the state’s highest civilian honor, in 2007.

The gift counts toward the Carolina First Campaign, the private fundraising drive that began in July 1999 and will end Dec. 31. The campaign has raised more than $2 billion for the University.

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