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Eric Deggans
Carrie Pratt/Simply Blue Studios

Eric Deggans

TV Critic

Eric Deggans is NPR's first full-time TV critic.

Deggans came to NPR in 2013 from the Tampa Bay Times, where he served a TV/Media Critic and in other roles for nearly 20 years. A journalist for more than 20 years, he is also the author of Race-Baiter: How the Media Wields Dangerous Words to Divide a Nation, a look at how prejudice, racism and sexism fuels some elements of modern media, published in October 2012, by Palgrave Macmillan.

In August 2013, Deggans guest hosted CNN's media analysis show Reliable Sources, joining a select group of journalists and media critics filling in for departed host Howard Kurtz. Earlier in the same month, he was awarded the Florida Press Club's first-ever Diversity award, honoring his coverage of issues involving race and media. He received the Legacy award from the National Association of Black Journalists' A&E Task Force, an honor bestowed to "seasoned A&E journalists who are at the top of their careers." Deggans serves on the board of educators, journalists and media experts who select the George Foster Peabody Awards for excellence in electronic media.

He also has joined a prestigious group of contributors to the first ethics book created in conjunction with the Poynter Institute for Media Studies for journalism's digital age: The New Ethics of Journalism, published in August 2013, by Sage/CQ Press.

Deggans has won reporting and writing awards from the Society for Features Journalism, American Association of Sunday and Feature Editors, the Society of Professional Journalists, the National Association of Black Journalists, The Florida Press Club and the Florida Society of News Editors. In 2010, he made national headlines interviewing former USDA official Shirley Sherrod at the NABJ's summer convention in San Diego, leading a panel discussion that was covered by all the major cable news and network TV morning shows.

Named in 2009, as one of Ebony magazine's "Power 150" – a list of influential black Americans which also included Oprah Winfrey and PBS host Gwen Ifill – Deggans was selected to lecture at Columbia University's prestigious Graduate School of Journalism in 2008 and 2005. He has lectured or taught as an adjunct professor at Loyola University, California State University, Indiana University, University of Tampa, Eckerd College and many other colleges.

His writing has also appeared in the New York Times online, Salon magazine, CNN.com, the Washington Post, Village Voice, VIBE magazine, Chicago Tribune, Detroit Free Press, Chicago Sun-Times, Seattle Times, Emmy magazine, Newsmax magazine, Rolling Stone Online and a host of other newspapers across the country.

From 2004 to 2005, Deggans sat on the then-St. Petersburg Times editorial board and wrote bylined opinion columns. From 1997 to 2004, he worked as TV critic for the Times, crafting reviews, news stories and long-range trend pieces on the state of the media industry both locally and nationally. He originally joined the paper as its pop music critic in November 1995. He has worked at the Asbury Park Press in New Jersey and both the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and Pittsburgh Press newspapers in Pennsylvania.

Now serving as chair of the Media Monitoring Committee for the National Association of Black Journalists, he has also served on the board of directors for the national Television Critics Association and on the board of the Mid-Florida Society of Professional Journalists.

Additionally, he worked as a professional drummer in the 1980s, touring and performing with Motown recording artists The Voyage Band throughout the Midwest and in Osaka, Japan. He continues to perform with area bands and recording artists as a drummer, bassist and vocalist.

Deggans earned a Bachelor of Arts in political science and journalism from Indiana University.

More From Eric Deggans

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Story Archive

'Gong Show' Reboot And Other New Game Shows Coming This Summmer

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For our critic Eric Deggans, John Amos's performance as the powerful, hardworking dad on Good Times was formative. CBS Photo Archive/Getty Images hide caption

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CBS Photo Archive/Getty Images

Learning The Lessons Of TV Fatherhood

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Alison Brie stars in Netflix's GLOW, a fictionalized take on the story behind the Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling league. Erica Parise/Netflix hide caption

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Erica Parise/Netflix

Summer TV Starts Strong With These June Premieres

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Adam West, Batman Of The 1960s, Dies At 88, After Short Battle With Leukemia

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Fifth 'House Of Cards' Season Speaks To Trump Era

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Rachel Lindsay works as an attorney in Dallas. She was in the 21st season of The Bachelor and now stars in the 13th season of The Bachelorette. Paul Hebert/ABC hide caption

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Paul Hebert/ABC

'The Bachelorette' May Have A Black Star, But It's Still Set In A White World

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25 Years After 'Twin Peaks,' The Odd Genius Of David Lynch Remains

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Stephen Colbert headlined CBS's glitzy presentation to advertisers at this year's upfronts in New York City. CBS Photo Archive/CBS via Getty Images hide caption

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CBS Photo Archive/CBS via Getty Images

TV Networks Unveil Fall Seasons At 2017 Upfronts

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ABC Announces Plan To Revive 'American Idol'

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2 Shows About Race Offer Different Approaches To Building Bridges

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Actresses Logan Browning (left) and Ashley Blaine Featherson appear in a scene from the Netflix show Dear White People. Adam Rose/Netflix hide caption

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Adam Rose/Netflix

This Time, 'Dear White People' Is Not So Much About Them

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Elisabeth Moss and Alexis Bledel as the Handmaids Offred and Ofglen in Hulu's new limited series, The Handmaid's Tale. George Kraychyk/Hulu hide caption

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George Kraychyk/Hulu

Hulu's 'The Handmaid's Tale' Is Compelling — And Chilling

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