Niketa Patel to Take the Reins of the Newmark J-School’s Executive Program

  • By Newmark J-School Staff

Patel succeeds Anita Zielina as the head of the Executive Program in News Innovation and Leadership

Niketa Patel, renowned digital journalist with over 19 years of experience in audience development, partnerships and product, will start as senior director of leadership programs at the Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism at CUNY on November 1.

Patel will run the school’s leadership initiatives, including its flagship program for media managers – the Executive Program in News Innovation and Leadershipdesigned to empower and train a new, more diverse generation of journalism leaders at the intersections of editorial, product, business and technology. In just three years, the Executive Program has already impacted the career trajectory of a talented and diverse cohort of emerging newsroom executives from around the world, such as Sewell Chan (Texas Tribune editor-in-chief), Susanne Amann (Der Spiegel managing editor) and Styli Charalambous (Daily Maverick CEO and publisher), among many others.  

“We are delighted to have Niketa Patel join our expanding community. The leadership initiatives are a priority for the Newmark J-School, because a new type of leadership is crucial for the future of the industry into which we are sending our graduates,” said Dean Graciela Mochkofsky.  

“Niketa already knows and loves our school and the Executive program. She has served as an executive coach for the past year, and she is someone who will continue to grow and shape it into the future. She is a trail-blazing leader who understands the business and technology of modern newsrooms and the need for more representation and equity in our industry. She is a proven mentor and an inspiration to journalists everywhere,” said Marie Gilot, executive director of J+, the professional development arm of the school. 

“As an experienced leader and change maker, I couldn’t be more excited to take the reins of Newmark J-School’s leadership programs. I cannot wait to inspire and empower new, more diverse cohorts of journalism leaders that are better equipped to oversee editorial, product, business and technology efforts,” Patel said. 

Patel served as Senior Director of Partnerships and Platforms at The 19th, overseeing editorial partnerships with a focus on republishing, co-publishing, collaborations, and events. She built and cultivated strategic partnerships with national, local and community newsrooms with an eye towards reaching diverse audiences. 

Prior to that, Patel managed Print and Digital News Partnerships in the U.S. for Twitter. In this role, she collaborated with newsrooms and journalists on strategic initiatives, product adoption, and best practices, as well as safety and training which spanned across Twitter’s wide range of products and tools. 

Chosen after a nationwide search, Patel will succeed Anita Zielina, who founded the Executive Program and will remain on as Executive in Residence, instructor and coach. 

Patel is currently on the Online News Association’s Board of Directors and has been a long time member of ONA, AAJA & SAJA.