Michael Jordan is a Bratislava, Slovakia-based freelance journalist and journalism teacher/trainer who returned to Central Europe in June 2006. He works as a foreign correspondent and teaches journalism to independent and minority students living among these young democracies, and now in Hong Kong as well. His reporting expertise encompasses Central-Eastern Europe, the Balkans, ex-Soviet republics, the United Nations and Middle East.
Meanwhile, Jordan has recently served on the teaching faculty in three different countries: as Visiting Scholar at Hong Kong Baptist University; the University of Saints Cyril and Methodius in historic Trnava, Slovakia; and Masaryk University in Brno, the second-largest university in the Czech Republic.
Jordan has also helped develop several journalism trainings, like for Roma (a.k.a. “Gypsy”) journalists in Slovakia, Macedonia, Bulgaria and Romania, and for the TOL Foreign Correspondence Training Course in Prague, where he has so far trained some 400 participants from 30 countries. (See CV for more detail.)
Earlier in his career, Jordan was from 1995-2000 the Budapest-based correspondent for the Christian Science Monitor newspaper, among others. While reporting from across Eastern Europe and the Balkans, he also explored military issues for Jane’s Defence Weekly and produced country media surveys for the London-based World Press Freedom Review – from Hungary, Serbia, Macedonia and Albania.
He then returned to New York to report from the United Nations, among other subjects, and to launch his teaching career. Until May 2006, Jordan was George Polk Journalist-in-Residence at Long Island University in Brooklyn, where he taught journalism for nearly four years; served as faculty advisor to the LIU student newspaper for more than two; and steered the Campus Internship program. He was for three years a judge on the prestigious George Polk Award panel, which bestows one of America’s top annual prizes for courageous investigative journalism.
Recommendations of Jordan’s teaching and training are available upon request.
While based in Brooklyn, Jordan continued to write for the CSMonitor – for whom he has now been a correspondent for 16 years – and contributed U.N. coverage to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Philadelphia Inquirer, Houston Chronicle and Denver Post. Jordan saw other pieces published in Dallas Morning News, San Francisco Chronicle, Salon, and Jerusalem Report, and reported from Kosovo, Belarus, Uzbekistan, Azerbaijan and Georgia.
Meanwhile, Jordan continues with production of his feature-length documentary film, “Between Two Evils,” which explores why so many Holocaust survivors who remained in Eastern Europe joined the Communist Party as a first step in rebuilding their lives. Among other documentary activities, he has worked as an editorial consultant, proposal writer, and co-wrote the script for “Anti-Semitism in the 21st Century: The Resurgence,” a PBS film that aired in January 2007 and won a Cine Golden Eagle Award.
Jordan has been a sought-after public speaker about the United Nations and Mideast conflict. (See CV for more detail.)
In 2006, he received his Master of Science in International Affairs from The New School (NY).
While he speaks his English mother-tongue pretty well, Jordan has also begun specializing in obscure, impractical languages: his conversational Hungarian is just enough to frustrate the Hungarians, who expect him to speak even better; his survival Slovak is chatty enough to earn smiles from the Slovaks — and puzzled looks from the neighboring Czechs. (“Why is this foreigner speaking to me in broken … Slovak?”) Add to that, a smattering of Cantonese that enables him to haggle for treasures in Hong Kong.
Jordan first launched his journalism career in 1990, after earning a Bachelor of Journalism from the University of Missouri’s renowned School of Journalism, established in 1908 as the world’s first J-school. (Though he wasn’t there to confirm this fact.) After three years of newspapering in California, he moved to his father’s birthplace – Budapest – to carve a niche among the foreign correspondents covering post-Communist Eastern Europe.