David Baxley is an Assistant Professor of Mass Communication. He joined the faculty of Francis Marion University in August 2016. He teaches several foundation and broadcast-track courses inside the department, including Introduction to Broadcast Journalism, Broadcast Field Production and Reporting, Advanced Broadcast Journalism, Broadcast Production, Introduction to Mass Communication, Critical Issues in Mass Communication, and Media Law. He also oversees broadcast students enrolled in internships at local TV stations and media companies. Furthermore, Baxley regularly offers guidance to mass communication students completing thesis requirements in the FMU Honors program.
Baxley worked in television news for over seventeen years prior to coming to FMU. He has experience working as a news producer, reporter, assignment manager and investigative producer at various television stations, including WVTM-TV in Birmingham, Alabama; WHNT-TV in Huntsville, Alabama; KSWO-TV in Lawton, Oklahoma; WAKA-TV in Montgomery, Alabama; and WIAT-TV in Birmingham, Alabama. He hopes to use his experience from inside these newsrooms to help students become better journalists and great communicators!
He earned a Master of Arts degree in Journalism from the University of Mississippi in 2007. Baxley also holds a degree in broadcast meteorology from Mississippi State University and worked as an on-air meteorologist for several years. He taught courses as an adjunct instructor at Troy University in Alabama.
Through the years, Baxley has been recognized for his work in television news, including awards from the Alabama Associated Press and the Oklahoma Broadcasters Association. He is most proud of the Regional Edward R. Murrow Award and a National Headliner Award in 2015 for his work on an investigative series entitled Letters to Sex Offenders.
Baxley wholeheartedly defends freedom of the press. He believes journalists have a truly unique responsibility in our democracy by providing fair and ethical reporting. Doing so, in his opinion, opens up dialogue on important social and moral matters. He believes an informed public through freedom of the press is a right that should never be diminished. Moreover, Baxley wants students to understand the invaluable role of reporters and their watchdog role of government. He routinely attends conferences and participates in webinars to stay up-to-date with First Amendment and public’s right to know issues.
Baxley is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists, Investigative Reporters & Editors, The National Freedom of Information Coalition, and the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication. He has also been inducted into Kappa Tau Alpha, a national journalism honor society.
Baxley is a frequent contributor to the Society of Professional Journalists – Region 3’s Sizing Up The South. You may view those articles here.
If you’re interested in knowing more about the broadcast journalism track inside the Department of Mass Communication, contact Professor Baxley.