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To the Editor

I am writing to set the record straight regarding the opinion article written by Jordyn Reiland in the Dec. 10 edition of The Daily Iowan. 

The Daily Iowan continues to have the same access to University of Iowa President Sally Mason that all other news media outlets enjoy. The Daily Iowan is invited to Mason’s briefing sessions along with other Iowa media outlets on a routine basis, roughly every six weeks. The DI also has access to Mason at press availabilities organized by the state Board of Regents. In addition, the Office of Strategic Communication attempts to be responsive to requests from journalists to speak with Mason outside of those scheduled sessions.

Earlier this year, two of the one-on-one interviews that Mason previously provided to staff of The Daily Iowan were canceled because of scheduling conflicts.  

Starting with the fall semester, the president’s media availabilities were broadened to offer all local media outlets the same opportunity to speak with her on an equal footing.

Finally, it is not our practice to preapprove interview topics. We typically ask journalists to tell us in advance of an interview about the topics they may wish to discuss in order to help with preparations for the interview.

Joseph A. Brennan, Ph.D.
UI Vice President for Strategic Communication

Editor's response

In response to the Letter to the Editor from Joe Brennan, the UI vice president for Strategic Communications, I fully stand by my letter to President Mason. The goal of my piece was to reinstate the Daily Iowan’s one-on-one Q&As with the president.

Online comments on ‘Reiland: The sit down’

Well-written and glad you brought to everyone's attention. So much for UI transparency. I have a better idea, simply get rid of Mason. From the time she came on the job she has never fit in with Iowa. Maybe there will not be another Skorton, but from my observations, by being student-friendly and accessible, students liked and respected him and the UI was a better place.

Mike McCracken

Strategic Comm guy Brennan handing out “how to report” to DI staffers beyond the pale. Ultimate disrespect. So much for celebrating the great asset the DI brings to campus. Not exactly a great PR move.

Sara Langenberg

If Mason cannot “handle” the press, what is she doing as president of the University of Iowa? It is a public job.

Elizabeth Zima

Not sure I have ever read a more whining and self-serving piece of journalism in my life.

Anne De Blieck Speer

Regular ‘Sit-Downs’ = a reasonable request.
Honesty & Transparency should be the goal of every UI President as (regular & frequent) communications with the student body (& local community) take place.

Pam Jarvis

Iowa City No. 1

The Johnson County Livable Community Policy Board was delighted to learn that Iowa City has been selected as No. 1 Small Metro in Milken Institute’s Best Cities for Successful Aging.  This ranking was based on eight subcomponents: General, Health Care, Wellness, Financial, Living Arrangements, Employment Education, Transportation/Convenience, and Community Engagement.

If you go to www.livablecommunity.org and on the home page click on the box on the right, you can read the full report.  You can also see what the Policy Board is doing to help make Johnson County the best place in the nation to age successfully.  Johnson County with its urban-rural mix has it all, but we recognize that there is more that can be done.

On behalf of the Johnson County Livable Community Policy Board I urge the county, all of the communities, the businesses, the agencies, organizations and citizens to work together to make Johnson County the best.  Go to www.livablecommunity.org and click the Get Involved tab on the home page to see how you can become involved.  We have current volunteer opportunities such as joining one of the Action Teams or the ability to make a tax-deductible financial gift.

Jeff Kellbach, chairman
Johnson County Livable Community Policy Board

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