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

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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.

Deggans is also currently a media analyst/contributor for MSNBC and NBC News. In August 2013, he 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. The same month, Deggans 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." And in 2019, he was named winner of the American Sociological Association's Excellence in the Reporting of Social Justice Issues Award.

In 2019, Deggans served as the first African American chairman of 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.

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.

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Story Archive

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Greg Lewis/AMC/Sony Pictures Television

Sunday The Emmys, But First The Deggys

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The second season of Amazon Prime's The Boys comes out on Friday. Karl Urban plays Butcher (from left), and his "boys" Hughie Campbell (Jack Quaid), The Female (Karen Fukuhara), Frenchie (Tomer Capon) and Mother's Milk (Laz Alonso). Jasper Savage/Amazon Studios hide caption

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Members of the District of Columbia Democratic Party attend a drive-in watch party in the parking lot of the Robert F. Kennedy Memorial Stadium to watch Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden accept the Democratic nomination for president on the final night of the Democratic National Convention on August 20, 2020. Drew Angerer/Getty Images hide caption

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Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Sterling K. Brown has been nominated as best lead actor in a drama series for This Is Us and best supporting actor in a comedy series for The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel on Amazon's Prime Video. He's pictured above in Beverly Hills, Calif., in August 2017. Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP hide caption

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Sterling K. Brown: Black Actors Have Waited 'A Long Time To Be Fully Recognized'

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The Evolution Of Ellen: A Talk Show Host Faces New Scrutiny

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Leslie Jones announces the 2020 Emmy nominees for Outstanding Comedy Series Tuesday during the 72nd Emmy Awards Nominations Announcements in Los Angeles. Uncredited/Invision for The Television Academy hide caption

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HBO's 'Weight Of Gold' Examines Olympians' Psychological Struggles

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Final Season Of 'Last Chance U' Focuses On Laney College Football

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Regis Philbin, Longtime TV Host, Dies At 88

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