Michael J. Jordan

Michael J. Jordan is a foreign correspondent and journalism teacher-trainer now based in southern Africa. Over the past 20 years, Jordan has reported from 30 countries, mostly across post-Communist Eastern Europe and former Soviet Union. He was first based in Hungary, then the United Nations, then in Slovakia, and today, in Lesotho – reporting for the Christian Science Monitor, Foreign Policy, Global Post, Harvard’s Nieman Reports, and many others. He is currently producing a documentary film on racial healing in post-Apartheid South Africa, called The Clubhouse.

Meanwhile, over the past decade, Jordan has also taught several thousand student-journalists and professional journalists – on four continents. His teaching career began in New York City, where he was the George Polk Journalist-in-Residence at Long Island University and also served as faculty adviser to the student newspaper. Today, though, his teaching-training clients are in Asia, Europe and Africa.

In Hong Kong, Jordan is a five-time Visiting Scholar at Hong Kong Baptist University, where he teaches Minority and Immigrant Reporting within HKBU’s International Journalism program. In Prague, he’s the Senior Journalism Trainer of a unique, pound-the-pavement Foreign Correspondence Course; since January 2007, he’s guided 21 groups of participants toward their first piece of international reporting. And in HIV-afflicted Lesotho, his home-base since 2011, he trains journalists to raise awareness about the nation’s health crisis through Health Journalism.

In Lesotho, a country that suffers the world’s third-highest rate of HIV infection yet lacks any real journalism education or professional training, Jordan has: led free HIV-journalism workshops for underprivileged Basotho youth at Kick4Life, a football-and-HIV-awareness organization; trained Basotho journalists in how to report on Gender-Based Violence in a more serious, responsible way (sponsored by the U.S. Embassy); created, pro bono, the National University of Lesotho’s “Health Journalism Club,” then taught reporting skills to 10 dedicated student-journalists; and, most recently, steered most important training of his career: coaching journalists in how to explore the most sensitive of all anti-HIV strategies – Voluntary Medical Male Circumcision. That two-month training was sponsored by Jhpiego, a global group affiliated with Johns Hopkins University. Meanwhile, for UNICEF-Lesotho, he also wrote three fundraising proposals on three vital issues here: immunizations, malnutrition and mother-to-child transmission of HIV.

Today, in addition to his feature documentary, Jordan works as a communications consultant for the World Bank in Pretoria, helping to document one of the most important initiatives across Southern Africa: how to tackle Tuberculosis in the mining sector. He’s also a communications consultant for World Vision, helping one of the globe’s largest NGOs raise awareness in Lesotho about the need to improve Maternal Child Health.

Contributions

September 18, 2014

PHOTO ESSAY: On August 30th, an “attempted coup” in Lesotho plunged the country into crisis. Now in its third week, it’s a full-blown diplomatic challenge for all of southern Africa. Recently South African President Jacob Zuma flew to the tiny "Kingdom in the Sky" to mediate. Michael J. Jordan, who covered the meeting for AFP, presents a photo essay on underlying political intrigue of a country on the brink.

August 12, 2014

This year marks the 20th anniversary since South Africa's first democratic elections, which in 1994 drove the final nail into the coffin of Apartheid. To commemorate this event and measure the depth of racial healing between blacks and whites in "The New South Africa," longtime Mantle correspondent Michael J. Jordan launched a documentary-film project, The Clubhouse: A Post-Apartheid Story.

August 7, 2014

This year marks the 20th anniversary since South Africa's first democratic elections, which in 1994 drove the final nail into the coffin of Apartheid. To commemorate this event and measure the depth of racial healing between blacks and whites in "The New South Africa," longtime Mantle correspondent Michael J. Jordan launched a documentary-film project, The Clubhouse: A Post-Apartheid Story.

August 5, 2014

This year marks the 20th anniversary since South Africa's first democratic elections, which in 1994 drove the final nail into the coffin of Apartheid. To commemorate this event and measure the depth of racial healing between blacks and whites in "The New South Africa," longtime Mantle correspondent Michael J. Jordan launched a documentary-film project, The Clubhouse: A Post-Apartheid Story.

July 31, 2014

This year marks the 20th anniversary since South Africa's first democratic elections, which in 1994 drove the final nail into the coffin of Apartheid. To commemorate this event and measure the depth of racial healing between blacks and whites in "The New South Africa," longtime Mantle correspondent Michael J. Jordan launched a documentary-film project, The Clubhouse: A Post-Apartheid Story.

July 29, 2014

This year marks the 20th anniversary since South Africa's first democratic elections, which in 1994 drove the final nail into the coffin of Apartheid. To commemorate this event and measure the depth of racial healing between blacks and whites in "The New South Africa," longtime Mantle correspondent Michael J.

July 22, 2014

This year marks the 20th anniversary since South Africa's first democratic elections, which in 1994 drove the final nail into the coffin of Apartheid. To commemorate this event and measure the depth of racial healing between blacks and whites in "The New South Africa," longtime Mantle correspondent Michael J. Jordan launched a documentary-film project, The Clubhouse: A Post-Apartheid Story.

July 15, 2014

Tucked in the middle of South Africa, the small country of Lesotho has made great strides in recent years by strengthening its democracy and moving toward stability. Yet, it could all be for naught if the country continues to refuse to address the real crisis in the region: HIV.

April 27, 2014

Twenty years after the fall of Apartheid in South Africa, racism isn't the country's biggest problem. Nowhere is this more evident than in the town of Ventersdorp, where the ultra-right separatist Afrikaner Resistance Movement (AWB) was founded. In this once-hotbed of racist fervor, along comes Samuel Phutiagae, the first black man to be admitted membership to the Ventersdorp Golf Club. He's playing golf ... and changing minds.  

June 3, 2013

Members of the Kick4Life Writing Club, to whom I taught HIV Journalism last year. (Photo: mjj)

MASERU, Lesotho – In November 2011, I was newly arrived in Africa, so full of hope, writing dreamily of Lesotho’s “veritable field of dreams” for journalism trainings.

Eighteen months later, rejection slaps me in the face so often, I’m ready to press charges. I’m a pauper on the streets, banging my tin-cup.

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