DePauw names new Prindle, Pulliam directors

Monday, June 20, 2022

DePauw University has appointed new directors of the Janet Prindle Institute for Ethics and the Eugene S. Pulliam Center for Contemporary Media, the result of two nationwide searches.

Jeffrey Dunn

Jeffrey Dunn, associate professor of philosophy at DePauw, was named to the position at Prindle, while JP Olsen, former director of original programming at HBO, is taking over at the Pulliam Center.

Dunn received his doctorate from the University of Massachusetts in 2010 and has taught at DePauw since then. He is chair of the philosophy department, a post he also held in 2019-20.

Dunn has been secretary-treasurer of the eastern division of the American Philosophical Association since 2017. At DePauw, he has been a judge for Prindle’s High School Ethics Bowl and a counselor at Express C.A.M.P., a summer day camp hosted by Prindle. He initiated Prindle’s Philosophy for Children program when he offered a winter-term class in 2017 and, two years later, partnered with the institute to invite a leading scholar to campus to discuss the topic.

“I was thrilled when Jeff emerged through our national search, as I have been impressed with his work at DePauw, where he is known for his inspiring courses, his scholarship and his strong administrative work,” said Dave Berque, vice president for academic affairs at DePauw. “Jeff will bring these skills and his deep knowledge of DePauw to this new role, and I am confident his leadership will further strengthen the Prindle Institute.”

JP Olsen

Olsen has spent his entire career in the media, most recently at HBO. From July 2015 until February 2021, he oversaw editorial content for VICE programming, including a news magazine, documentaries and a daily news program. On his watch, VICE programming won 23 news and documentary Emmys, seven Peabodys, multiple Murrow and Overseas Press Club awards and citations from GLAAD and the National Association of Black Journalists. After VICE’s cancellation, he went on to study under filmmaker and fine artist Sir Isaac Julien at the IJ Lab at the University of California, Santa Cruz.

Olsen previously was a producer and writer for Retro Report, a documentary series for The New York Times’ website, and a researcher, producer, co-producer, writer and director for various PBS programming. He was filmmaker-in-residence for the narrative and documentary film seminar hosted by Ohio Wesleyan University and the New York Arts Program and has been a guest lecturer on documentary filmmaking at a number of universities.

“JP Olsen is going to make an ideal director for the Pulliam Center,” Berque said. “His deep industry knowledge, prior experiences working with DePauw students through the New York Arts Program and commitment to collaborating with faculty and staff perfectly position JP to build on the center’s successes as DePauw embarks on our strategic plan.”

Olsen, who holds a master’s degree in journalism from Columbia University, will begin his tenure July 25.

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