Journalist Jackie Spinner opens up about war experiences

Leah Ulatowski


Leah Ulatowski

Director of Communications David Gallianetti and journalist Jackie Spinner had an in-depth interview about her experience as a war correspondent.

Leah Ulatowski, Executive Editor

Jackie Spinner, former staff reporter for the Washington Post, never imagined she would cover the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, scrawling her blood type onto duct tape every morning and plastering it over her flak jacket in place of a dog tag, knowing anything could happen out in the field.

When editors at the Washington Post asked Spinner to write about the war, she knew the stories were on the ground with the Iraqis and American servicemen. On Sept. 10, Spinner sat down for an intimate interview in the Bradley Building to discuss her experiences with Director of Communications David Gallianetti.

Spinner discussed her relationships with the Iraqis and American troops, the misconceptions some Americans have about Iraqi culture and how journalists are meant to serve as checks on government. She also read excerpts from her 2006 book, “Tell Them I Didn’t Cry: A Young Journalist’s Story of Joy, Loss, and Survival in Iraq,” and took audience questions.

The event certainly was not Spinner’s first visit to Lakeland College; she gave the commencement address to graduates in 2006 and spoke with several classes, including the Mirror practicum, during a visit in 2014. Spinner currently serves as assistant professor of journalism at Columbia College in Chicago.