Harvard, Neiman Foundation Deny Advance Reports on New Curator

Both Harvard University and the Nieman Foundation have denied a suggestion by a Boston Globe television critic that the journalism institute has chosen a new curator, and that the new head is a woman.

"Harvard has a major-league Woman Problem," the Boston Globe's Alex Beam wrote in Friday's paper, "and it would like to use the highly visible Nieman curatorship...to help solve it."

Not so fast, says the Nieman Foundation.

Though Bill Kovach, the current curator, retires this June, University Spokesperson Joe Wrinn said nothing is concrete and that the search for his successor continues.

"I don't believe a decision has been made," Wrinn said. "I don't know where the search is at this point."

Wrinn also said the University would not want to compromise finding a capable candidate for the position for the sole objective of promoting the position of women at the University.

"The search began in earnest after my retirement was announced in early September," Kovach said. "We have been gathering names ever since."

Kovach said he does not know whether the committee is searching specifically for a woman.

But he said the end to the search is "nowhere near."

"I'm sure there are lobbying groups of various kinds, that generally is the case," he said. "I know the search is ongoing, but I have been in an advisory capacity, so I don't know the specifics."

Kovach did say the Nieman foundation is having a reunion in late April for over 500 past fellows, and he would like to attend that reunion with his successor, whoever he--or she--may be.

--Kirsten G. Studlien