Executive Alert: MU journalism, National Blues Museum pick leaders

Executive Alert is a weekly report on career moves, awards and recognition and other top news about executives from across the Show-Me State.

Career moves

David Kurpius, dean of the University of Missouri School of Journalism | Courtesy of the University of Missouri School of Journalism
David Kurpius | Courtesy of the University of Missouri School of Journalism

The University of Missouri School of Journalism has named David Kurpius as its new dean. Currently, Kurpius works at Louisiana State University, where he’s a professor and associate vice chancellor for enrollment management. He will assume his responsibilities at MU effective July 1, replacing Dean Mills, who has led the journalism school for since 1989.

Dion Brown, the executive director of the B.B. King Museum in Mississippi, has been named the founding executive director of the National Blues Museum in St. Louis. He will assume his new role in June. The museum was established to explore blues and celebrate the genre as a foundation of modern American music.

In the news

During a sentencing hearing this week, former Sprint Corp. chief financial officer Robert Dellinger faced harsh comments from the family of a Vermont couple he killed in a car crash in December 2013. Dellinger told police he was trying to kill himself when his truck crossed a median and crashed into another vehicle, killing a New Hampshire couple and their unborn child. Dellinger could face 12 to 24 years for negligent homicide.

Spence Jackson, spokesman for former Missouri Auditor Tom Schweich | Courtesy of Spence Jackson/LinkedIn
Spence Jackson | Courtesy of Spence Jackson/LinkedIn

Spence Jackson, media director for the late Missouri Auditor Tom Schweich, was found dead of a single gunshot wound on Sunday at his residence in Jefferson City. Schweich committed suicide in late February, and police have said there’s nothing to suggest Jackson’s death was anything other than a suicide. Jackson, 44, held jobs in politics and government for years, also working for Republicans Gov. Matt Blunt and former U.S. Sen. Christopher “Kit” Bond. He left a note that read, “I’m so sorry. I just can’t take being unemployed again.”

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