Knight-Wallace Staff

Charles Eisendrath

Charles R. Eisendrath ’75 has been the director of the Knight-Wallace Fellows at Michigan since 1986. After reporting briefly for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, he joined the Baltimore Evening Sun, and then TIME Magazine, which posted him in Washington, London, Paris and Buenos Aires, where he was bureau chief. In 1974 Charles Eisendrath came to the University as a journalism Fellow and after his Fellowship stayed to run the Journalism Master’s Program. His articles and comments on media topics have appeared frequently in publications such as the New York Times, Newsday, Los Angeles Times, Miami Herald, Chicago Tribune, Philadelphia Inquirer, International Herald Tribune and European Wall Street Journal as well as NPR’s “All Things Considered,” ABC’s “Good Morning America” and Michigan Public Radio. His academic writing and television work include The World Press Encyclopedia, Columbia Journalism Review, Journal of Contemporary French Civilization and two five-part educational television series: “City Desk” and “Foreign Assignment: USA.” Charles is the founding director of the Livingston Awards for Young Journalists, the largest all-media, general reporting award in the country. He chaired the American Board of the International Press Institute, IPI, from 2006 to 2009.

Birgit Rieck

Birgit Rieck has been with the Knight-Wallace Fellows program since May 2004 and, as assistant director, manages the daily activities, seminars and news tours. Until 2004 she administered the Livingston Awards for Young Journalists. Birgit received a Master’s Degree in Cultural Anthropology and Education from Johannes Gutenberg University in Mainz, Germany, after finishing fieldwork in Uganda and Rome. She also completed a two-year management training with InterContinental Hotels Group in London. Before coming to the United States she was a reporter and program host for “Stadtradio Karlsruhe,” one of the first privately owned radio stations in Germany.

MaryEllen Doty

Mary Ellen Doty has managed the finances at Wallace House since August 2003 and assisted Charles in his position as the chairman of the International Press Institute North American Committee. Before coming to Wallace House, Mary Ellen was the office manager for The Housing Bureau for Seniors in Ann Arbor. She did accounting for the Daniel L. Bowers Co. in Rochester Hills, MI. Mary Ellen has a BA in Social Work from the University of Michigan and took Masters Classes in Accountancy at Walsh College.

Patricia Meyers-Wilkins

Patricia Meyers-Wilkens has been at Wallace House since October 2007. She spent 10 years working as a reporter, columnist and editor for a weekly newspaper in southeastern Michigan. Originally from New York and a graduate of Rutgers University, she and her family moved to Michigan in 1987. She currently resides in a little log cabin on the lake in the Irish Hills area.


Melissa Riley

Melissa Riley administers The Livingston Awards for Young Journalists and plans conferences and special events for the Knight-Wallace Fellows. Melissa began her career in marketing and advertising for Trans World Airlines. She worked as a production coordinator on commercial films and television advertisements and was a producer at Saturday Night Live. In 1997, she founded the television production department for the BBDO advertising agency office in Moscow, Russia, and managed it. A native of California, Melissa graduated from the School of Journalism and Mass Communications at San Jose State University. After living overseas, in Russia, Israel and Malaysia, Melissa is happy to call Ann Arbor her home.


Melissa Riley

Sarah Prince came to Wallace House as an administrator in November 2014. She has prior experience in teaching, mentoring, writing, and office management. After graduating from Michigan State University with a bachelor’s degree in English, she worked for The Ann Arbor News as editorial aide and editorial aide supervisor. She then went on to receive a master’s degree in secondary education from the University of Michigan. Following a short stint as a high school English teacher, she is happy (and surprised) to be back in the world of journalism and higher education.

Melissa Riley

Travis Holland has been leading writing workshops at Wallace House since Fall 2008. He is the author of The Archivist's Story, and a contributing editor at Fiction Writers Review. In 2007, The Archivist's Story was listed among the best books of the year by Publisher's Weekly and the Financial Times, and was a Guardian Readers’ Pick. He is the winner of the 2008 VCU Cabell First Novelist Award, and was a finalist for the 2009 Impac Dublin prize. His stories have previously appeared in PloughsharesFive Points,  and The Quarterly.

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