Rachele Kanigel is chair of the Journalism Department at San Francisco State University and a professor in the department. She teaches Newswriting, Reporting, News Entrepreneurship, The Contemporary Magazine, Magazine Writing and Magazine Editing. She also writes, mostly about health and medicine and about journalism education, for magazines and websites.
She was a newspaper reporter for 15 years for daily newspapers, including The Oakland Tribune and The News & Observer of Raleigh, North Carolina and was a freelance correspondent for TIME magazine. She has also written for U.S. News and World Report, Prevention, Health, San Francisco Magazine, Organic Style, People, Reader’s Digest and other magazines. She was a frequent contributor to PBS MediaShift.
She is the editor of The Diversity Style Guide, a website designed to help media professionals write with accuracy and authority about a complex, multicultural world. A companion book, also called The Diversity Style Guide, was published by Wiley in 2019. She works with media organizations to help develop style guides and to train staff in inclusive language.
In 2017, she was named a Fulbright Specialist in journalism education; in 2019, she taught and trained faculty in the new mass communication B.A. program at Royal Thimphu College for 10 weeks.
She is a past president of the College Media Association, the leading voice of collegiate media and the professionals who work with college media organizations. Her book, The Student Newspaper Survival Guide, was published by Blackwell Publishing (now Wiley-Blackwell) in 2006; a redesigned and extensively updated second edition was published in 2011.
In 2006 she was named Journalism Educator of the Year, Four-Year Division, by the California Journalism Education Coalition and in 2010 she was honored with the Beverly Kees Educator Award by the Northern California chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists. She is a member of SPJ, as well as the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication, Journalism & Women Symposium and the Online News Association.
She served as executive director of the Institute for Education in International Media (ieiMedia), which sponsors summer multimedia study-abroad programs. She has directed ieiMedia summer programs in Jerusalem (2013); Perpignan, France (2010 and 2011); and Urbino, Italy (2009) and taught storytelling in Cagli, Italy (2007). In 2020, she will teach in ieiMedia’s program in Valencia, Spain.
She holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism from San Francisco State University and a master’s degree from Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism.
She lives in Oakland with her husband, Laird Harrison. They are the parents of two fine men, Dashiell and Trevor.