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Phil Bennett tapped for new role at FRONTLINE

April 21, 2017

Phil Bennett

Phil Bennett, Eugene C. Patterson professor of the practice of public policy studies and journalism, has accepted an additional position as special projects editor of FRONTLINE, PBS’ investigative documentary series.

The former managing editor of the Washington Post will work with the show’s political teams.

“The need for deep, original reporting and accountability journalism about national politics and policy is more urgent than ever,” said FRONTLINE Executive Producer Raney Aronson-Rath in a release. “FRONTLINE and PBS are committed to investigating the important political stories of our time with depth and insight, and producing tough, fair journalism that viewers can trust.”

Bennett has produced documentaries including The Choice 2016, Divided States of America and Trump’s Road to the White House.

Recent FRONTLINE films that Bennett has worked on all feature full length source interviews published alongside the documentaries. This aspect of his work dovetails with the Rutherfurd Living History program here at Duke, which he directs, and his teaching of the undergraduate course, “The Art of the Interview” (Spring, PJMS 364S). 

A novel online navigation system through the film’s scripts, as well as access to source material and interviews are hallmarks of the FRONTLINE Transparency Project, a partnership with Duke that he will continue to lead in his new role.

"Phil's continued professional engagement models the role of a Professor of the Practice, enriches his on-going role in the classroom and in Sanford's DeWitt Wallace Center for Media and Democracy, and contributes to serious national debate on politics and government," said Judith Kelley, Senior Associate Dean in the Sanford School of Public Policy.


Phil Bennett was a co-producer of the highly anticipated FRONTLINE documentary The Choice 2016 which aired nationally on PBS. Here he talks to Sanford's Dean Kelly Brownell about the stories the team uncovered about Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton: