Lawrence Pintak is an award-winning journalist and scholar who has written about America’s complex relationship with Islam since 1980. He was the founding dean of The Edward R. Murrow College of Communication at Washington State University (2009-2016), was named a Fellow of the Society of Professional Journalists in 2017 for “outstanding service to the profession of journalism” around the world, and received the AEJMC Senior Scholar award in 2019.

A former CBS News Middle East correspondent with a PhD in Islamic Studies, Pintak been called the foremost chronicler of the interaction between Arab and Western media. His books and articles focus on America’s relationship with the Muslim world, the role of the media in shaping global perceptions and government policy, and the future of journalism in a digital/globalized world.

Pintak reported on the birth of modern suicide bombing and the rise of Hezbollah in Beirut, the Iran-Iraq War, the Israeli invasion of Lebanon and a variety of other stories across the Middle East. His career extends from the Carter White House to the Indonesian revolution; Armenia to Zimbabwe. He has won two Overseas Press Club awards and was twice nominated for international Emmys. Prior to WSU, Pintak served as director of the Kamal Adham Center for Journalism Training and Research at The American University in Cairo.

He is hosted The Murrow Interview, a series of broadcast conversations with leading figures in international affairs and global journalism and was founding publisher of the online journal Arab Media & Society. His work appears in The New York Times,,, the International Herald Tribune, The Seattle Times and a variety of other publications and he is frequently interviewed by NPR, CNN, Al Jazeera English, BBC and news organizations around the world.

Pintak has assisted journalism schools in the Arab world, the Caucasus and Pakistan, where a curriculum he helped develop has been adopted as the national standard. He is a member of the board of advisers of the Center for Excellence in Journalism in Karachi and is an adviser to the U.S. State Department on the U.S. government-funded project.

His latest book, America & Islam: Soundbites, Suicide Bombs and the Road to Donald Trump will be published by Bloomsbury in June 2019. Previous books include Islam for Journalists (co-editor, 2014); The New Arab Journalist (2011); Reflections in a Bloodshot Lens: America, Islam & the War of Ideas (2006); Seeds of Hate: How America’s Flawed Middle East Policy Ignited the Jihad (2003); and Beirut Outtakes (1988). He holds a PhD in Islamic Studies from the University of Wales.


  1. Liz Abrams says:

    Hi, there.

    My husband and I both work at Joe’s in Chicago. He was your bartender, Staats. I’m a waitress. So… We’re sitting at home, after work, discussing our evenings. He told me that nothing much had happened, aside from meeting a “really cool journalist from NJ.” I had to laugh, as I looked up yout bio (crazy Internet). Thanks for taking the time to engage Staats. Scintillating conversation is lacking, at moments! I hope you come back to visit but, if not, I wish you safe travels and adventure.

    With regards,
    Liz Abrams

    Ps-Staats doesn’t know how to email, so I wrote this for him.

    • It was great to meet him. I’m in Pakistan at the moment, but I’m sure I’ll be back through Chicago at some point and will certainly stop back in at Joe’s — and hopefully meet you as well.

  2. Curt Leslie says:

    The cliche is “Hindsight is 20/20.” The present situation is horrific. What is your take on the explanation that the events of the last twenty five years were designed to do one thing, that is run, up the price of oil over one hundred dollars a barrel?
    Hence the commercial banks loaned the money to develop Bakken. North America has at least one hundred years of light crude, the Saudi’s have a hundred year extension on their production.
    What do you think? Curt leslie 2016-08-13

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