John K. “Jack” Hartman, 73, of rural Powell, received the Ashland High School Distinguished Alumnus Award on Oct. 5.
The event honors AHS graduates who have made significant achievements as adults in their careers and/or have served as benefactors to others. Hartman graduated from Ashland High School in 1963, where he was sports editor of the Panorama, a three-year tennis letterman, and a National Honor Society member.
He received a bachelor’s degree in journalism in 1967 from Bowling Green State University, where he was sports editor and editorial page editor of the BG News, a student council member, and a student broadcaster. He received his master’s in radio-TV-film in 1977 and his doctorate in communication in 1986 from BGSU.
His career highlights include: sports editor of Ashland Times-Gazette, 1968-1971; public information officer, Ashland ODOT, 1971-1974; instructor of journalism, BGSU, 1977-1979; copy editor, Toledo Blade, 1980-1984; and professor of journalism, Central Michigan University, 1984-2015.
Dr. Hartman wrote two books, “The USA TODAY Way in 1992” and “The USA TODAY Way 2 The Future” in 2000, about the trend-setting national newspaper. He has been widely quoted regarding journalism, including in the New York Times and the Washington Post. His reporting was honored by the Ohio Associated Press and Gannett Newspapers.
Named emeritus professor upon his retirement in 2015, he was inducted into the CMU Journalism Hall of Fame in 2018.
Hartman was chosen the Al-Jazirah Newspaper International Chair of Journalism by King Saud University, visiting in 2008, 2009, and 2010.
He and his wife, Kay, were both elected as delegates to the Democratic National Convention in Boston in 2004. He covered the DNC in Denver in August 2008.
Elected five times to the Bowling Green Board of Education, he served from 1978-1997. He was president twice.
The Hartmans were chosen Family of the Year in Bowling Green in 1981.
A resident of Powell since 2008, he has held several appointed positions in Liberty Township. He has been a media columnist for the Columbus Free Press since 2015 and has taught for Kent State University and Tiffin University.
Hartman and the former Kay Franks, a 1966 Ashland High School graduate, were married in 1967. They have three daughters: Kimberly Brueck of Green, Alicia Wolshire of Dublin, and Jackie Ashley of Chapel Hill, N.C.; and seven grandchildren: Isaac Kinaitis, Ian Kinaitis, Adam Wolshire, Ella Wolshire, Aiden Brueck, Samantha Ashley and Paige Ashley.