October 29, 2004

Former newspaper reporter Kate Ripley has been named director of public affairs for the University of Alaska statewide system

Ripley, 38, will assume the $80,000-a-year post on Monday, Nov. 1, said Wendy Redman, vice president of university relations.

“Kate will be responsible for the university’s statewide communications with the news media and the general public, as well as for internal communications for all university locations in the state,” Redman said. “As a native Alaskan she has a good grasp of our state’s history and the demands and promise of our university system. She has proven to be a great reporter, writer and media liaison. That makes her uniquely qualifi ed to handle the kind of communication challenges the university is facing today.”

Ripley was born and raised in Juneau, and is an eighth generation Alaskan. She received a bachelor of arts degree in journalism from the University of Montana, and is pursuing a master’s degree in Northern Studies at the University of Alaska Fairbanks. She was a reporter and editor at both the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner and the Juneau Empire. In addition to articles in numerous publications, Ripley also edited the third edition of “Best Places Alaska,” published by Sasquatch Books. She also produced and hosted KUAC-FM’s weekly live call-in health show, “Evening Rounds.”

Ripley is married to Brian O’Donoghue, an assistant professor of journalism at UAF. They have three children.

A 300dpi resolution color photo of Kate Ripley is available at http://www.alaska.edu/opa.