Rare Book & Manuscript Library

Joan Konner papers, 1950s-2010s

Summary Information


Papers of Joan Konner, journalist, documentary filmmaker, television producer, author, and former Dean of the Columbia Graduate School of Journalism.

At a Glance

Call No.: MS#1993
Bib ID 14319883 View CLIO record
Creator(s) Konner, Joan
Title Joan Konner papers, 1950s-2010s
Physical Description 30.83 linear feet (24 record cartons and 2 document boxes)
Language(s) English .
Access You will need to make an appointment in advance to use this collection material in the Rare Book and Manuscript Library reading room. You can schedule an appointment once you've submitted your request through your Special Collections Research Account.

The collection is located on site.

Series V: Notebooks is retricted until 2045.



Content Description

Materials include correspondence, speeches, reports, project proposals, photographs, publications, clippings, press releases, notebooks, transcripts of programs, teaching materials, awards, memorabilia and media, including VHS tapes, 3/4" tapes, Betas, audiocassettes, diskettes, etc. Materials cover her career from her start at the Bergen Record, WNBC and PBS to her time at Columbia and her book projects.

  • Series I: Articles and Clippings

    This series contains articles and editorials written by Konner as well as media coverage of her television and documentary work. There are multiple copies of the fragile newsprint and some photocopies.

  • Series II: Biographical Materials

    This series contains Konner's resumes and CVs, including the materials submitted for her tenure review before being appointed Dean of the School of Journalism, 1988. In addition, this series includes Konner's student work and memorabilia collected throughout her career.

  • Series III: Columbia University

    This series contains Konner's files as Dean and Dean Emerita of the School of Journalism. The subject files are organized alphabetically. There is also an extensive collection of remarks (Subseries III.2: Dean's Remarks), from panel introductions to welcome and commencement speeches, organized chronologically. Additional remarks and addresses can be found in Series IX: Speeches.

  • Series IV: Correspondence

    This series contains the correspondence files kept by Konner. It covers a wide range of correspondents from her entire career and includes personal correspondence.

  • Series V: Notebooks

    Konner used notebooks as intimate diaries, for writting down ideas for possible projects, and for drafts of a future memoir. The contents of the notebooks vary widely. These are her personal journals and as such, these records are restricted until 2045.

  • Series VI: Photographs

    This series contains photographs from Konner's career. There are headshoots as well as photos from events such as awards ceremonies and commencement.

  • Series VII: Printed Materials

    This series contains records related to Konner's book projects, both published and unpublished. There are early writtings, including some poetry, but the bulk of the series is related to Konner's collections of thoughts and illustrations published in the 2000s.

  • Series VIII: Projects and Research

    This series, for the most part, contains materials related to Konner's television production work. From her time at WNBC and public television (Danger: Radioactive Waste) to her work on Bill Moyers Journal, Joseph Campbell's Power of Myth, She Says: Women in the News and the Mystery of Love. The materials include background information, proposals, drafts, transcripts, scripts, legal paperwork, publicity materials and reviews. There are also files on some of her early projects, some unproduced projects, and research files for possible projects. Related audio and video content can be found in Series X: Media.

  • Series IX: Speeches

    This series contains Konner's remarks and addresses, as a guest lecturer and as a speaker before professional journalists' associations. Her remarks as Dean of the School of Journalism can be found in Series III: Columbia University.

  • Series X: Media

    This series contains audio and visual matarials. There are audiocassettes but also video cassettes (Betamax, VHS, Mini-DVs, etc.). There are also some CDs, DVDs and thumb drives with digital media content.

  • Series XI: Website

    This series contains links to the archived or captured versions of Konner's personal site: joankonner.com.

Using the Collection

Rare Book and Manuscript Library

Conditions Governing Access

You will need to make an appointment in advance to use this collection material in the Rare Book and Manuscript Library reading room. You can schedule an appointment once you've submitted your request through your Special Collections Research Account.

The collection is located on site.

Series V: Notebooks is retricted until 2045.

Conditions Governing Use

Single photocopies may be made for research purposes. The RBML maintains ownership of the physical material only. Copyright remains with the creator and his/her heirs. The responsibility to secure copyright permission rests with the patron.

The RBML cannot provide access to original time-based media material which has not been first been reformatted for preservation. Researchers are welcome to examine archival time-based media items and decide whether they wish to place an order for Audio/Video reformatting. If copyright and/or condition restrictions apply, it may not be possible to digitize a requested item. Please note that A/V reformatting is handled by an outside vendor and typically takes 6-8 weeks.

Preferred Citation

Identification of specific item; Date (if known); Joan Konner papers; Box and Folder; Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Columbia University Libraries.

Related Materials

Additional materials about Konner's tenure as Dean and even as a student at the Columbia School of Journalism, please consult the Graduate School of Journalism Records (UA#0065); Graduate School of Journalism Photographs (UA#0211); and Graduate School of Journalism Facebooks (UA#0265).


No additions are expected.

About the Finding Aid / Processing Information

Columbia University Libraries, Rare Book and Manuscript Library

Processing Information

This collection was processed by Joanna Rios, Summer 2022. Finding aid was written by Joanna Rios, September 2022.

Revision Description

2022-09-19 Added container list; updated front matter. (JR)

Subject Headings

The subject headings listed below are found in this collection. Links below allow searches at Columbia University through the Archival Collections Portal and through CLIO, the catalog for Columbia University Libraries, as well as ArchiveGRID, a catalog that allows users to search the holdings of multiple research libraries and archives.

All links open new windows.


Heading "CUL Archives:"
"CUL Collections:"
"Nat'l / Int'l Archives:"
Columbia University -- Administration Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Columbia University. Graduate School of Journalism Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Journalism and education Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Journalist Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Television journalists -- United States Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Women in journalism Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID

History / Biographical Note

Biographical Note

Joan Konner (born Joan Barbara Weiner; February 24, 1931 – April 18, 2018), was an American academic and journalist who served as Dean of the Columbia School of Journalism for 9 years.

She received a B.A. from Sarah Lawrence (1951) and her M.S. from the Columbia Graduate School of Journalism (1961). She was a reporter, editorial writer, and columnist for the Bergen (N.J.) Record; a producer, reporter, host and editor, at WNET/Thirteen; a documentary and news producer, writer, director and program director at NBC News; an executive producer for national public affairs programs, and executive producer of "Bill Moyers Journal."

She was also a vice president, director of programming and executive producer for the Metropolitan Division and senior executive producer for national public affairs, WNET/Thirteen. In addition, she was president and executive producer, Public Affairs Television Inc., in partnership with Bill Moyers.

She was the Dean of the Graduate School of Journalism, Columbia University (1988-1997), and the publisher, Columbia Journalism Review (1988-1999). She continued to serve as a professor until 2006.

Awards include 13 Emmys from the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences; Peabody Award, 1980; Alfred. I. duPont Award, 1989; three American Bar Association Awards; Outstanding Broadcast Journalism Educator, from the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication, 1996.