Returning to campus? Read our Fall 2021 Reopening Plan.

Creators in Residence to Help Advance Entrepreneurial Initiatives

  • By Newmark J-School Staff
Yvonne Leow (left) and Hillary Frey
Yvonne Leow (left) and Hillary Frey

The Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism has appointed two distinguished media leaders and entrepreneurs as its first Creators in Residence to support its entrepreneurial programs. Yvonne Leow, founder and CEO of Bewilder, and Hillary Frey, former executive editor of HuffPost, will join the school for one year beginning October 18.

The Creators in Residence will support, coach, and mentor media entrepreneurs in the school community, teach workshops, take part in events and convenings, and create case studies on successful niche media and journalism creators. They will work under Jeremy Caplan, director of the Entrepreneurial Journalism Creators Program, a 100-day online program that supports niche media creators on their path to sustainability. Financial backing for the new roles comes from the Facebook Journalism Project.

“What we’re hearing from media entrepreneurs is that they need more ongoing support to become sustainable,” said Anita Zielina, director of strategic initiatives at the Newmark J-School. “They need mentoring and coaching; they want to be able to learn from international and U.S. case studies of successful creators. We are excited that we’ll be able to offer this support to our students, alumni, and entrepreneurs affiliated with our programs from now on.”

Prior to launching Bewilder, Leow consulted for media and tech companies, including for the Knight Foundation, NYU’s Membership Puzzle Project, Sequoia Capital, and Nextdoor. She has written about the creator economy for the Reynolds Journalism Institute and has almost a decade of digital journalism experience working as a senior Snapchat editor for Vox.com, director of video for Digital First Media, and west regional video producer for the Associated Press. 

Leow was the youngest fellow to join the John S. Knight Journalism Fellowship at Stanford University, has served as the national president for the Asian American Journalists Association, and is a graduate of UCLA.

For the past 10 years, Frey has run newsrooms at Adweek, Yahoo News, NBC News, Fusion, and HuffPost. As executive editor at HuffPost, she led the management team in contract negotiations with the unionized newsroom, oversaw the launch of the award-winning HuffPost Life service journalism vertical, and produced the Listen to America bus tour, during which more than 45 HuffPost journalists interviewed 1,700 people in 25 locations across the country and worked with local media organizations to understand the most pressing issues after the 2016 election.

Frey, a veteran digital newsroom executive, said she is committed to empathetic leadership, sustainable growth in media, and mentoring the next generation of journalists.