headshot photo of Susan Paterno

Susan Paterno

Wilkinson College of Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences; Department of English
Office Location: Wilkinson Hall 215
Office Hours: By appointment only
Phone: (714) 997-6646
Occidental College, Bachelor of Arts (Latin)
Northwestern University, Master of Science


Susan F. Paterno, director of the journalism program at Chapman University, is an award-winning journalist with more than 20 years experience as a reporter, writer and columnist. A senior writer for "American Journalism Review," Professor Paterno won the National Press Club's 2006 Arthur Rowse Award for Press Criticism. She has written for the Los Angeles Times, the New York Times, U.S. News & World Report, Parenting and many other publications. She has collaborated on a half dozen books, including The Newswriters Handbook and Talk Straight, Listen Carefully: The Art of Interviewing with M.L. Stein, the retired chair of New York University's Department of Journalism and Mass Communications. For nearly a decade, Professor Paterno served on the staff of the Orange County Register, where she won numerous awards for writing and reporting, and several fellowships for post-graduate study. In 1995, Chapman University awarded her the Hua-Cheng Wang Fellowship in Scholarly achievement, the highest honor Chapman confers on a member of the faculty. She holds a post-graduate degree from the University of Southern California, a M.S.J. from Northwestern University and two A.B. degrees from Occidental College in Los Angeles, where she graduated Phi Beta Kappa with honors in American Studies and Diplomacy and World Affairs. She speaks French and Spanish fluently. In 2008, she defeated multi-millionaire Wendy McCaw in a widely publicized libel and defamation lawsuit stemming from the publication of "Santa Barbara Smack Down" in the American Journalism Review.

Recent Creative, Scholarly Work and Publications

"Talk Straight, Listen Carefully," Paterno, Stein; selected by Harvard Kennedy School Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics and Public Policy, as recommended text.
Business Ethics: Ethical Issues in Journalism, edited: Fritz Allhoff; "Intervention Dilemma," Paterno, Susan; Sage Press Publishing, Santa Barbara, Calif.
“Talk Straight Listen Carefully,” Paterno and Stein, selected by Harvard Kennedy School Shorenstein Center as recommended text.
Shadows of Liberty 2014 American Tour, documentary screening in 170 cities nationwide, including The Public Broadcasting System (PBS.) Nominated for Best Documentary Feature by NewFilmmakers Los Angeles.
“Argentine Summer,” Orange County Register, August 2014.
"Santa Barbara Smackdown," Columbia Journalism Review, anthology, "An example o the kind of solid journalism criticism that the American Journalism Review is known for at its best, the kind of analysis and reporting that would be sorely missed if the magazine disappeared."