Meet the Editor

Gordon Billingsley

Editor Gordon Billingsley
Lenexa, KS
  • English

About Gordon

  • Writer and editor with 36-plus years experience.
  • International, national, regional and state awards for investigative reporting, business writing and editorial writing. U.S. Agriculture Writer of the Year and Best U.S. Farm Columnist.
  • Editorial director of Vance Publishing Company, leading a converged newsroom in the production of a B2B international weekly newspaper, three magazines and a Web site.
  • Developer of international magazines and websites for PRIMEDIA (now Penton), a $1.7-billion publisher of consumer and business magazines.
  • Digital media consultant, assisting newspapers and other businesses in developing effective, aggressive products in digital and print media..

Experience

Adjunct Instructor • Johnson County Community College
2015 — Present
Owner • Gordon Billingsley Consulting
2012 — Present
  • Digital and print media consultant assisting newspapers and businesses in developing effective, aggressive digital and print products.
  • Strategic planning, including business impact analysis, business continuity and disaster recovery.

  • Writing coach. Editing. Writing. Photography. Video. 

Digital Media Director • The Ottawa Herald
2003 — 2012
  • Digital product development including websites, mobile sites, shopping carts, email marketing, social media marketing, analytics and SEO in news, advertorial, marketing and advertising for The Herald and for multiple clients.
  • Took The Herald website from 30,000 page views a month to 600,000.
  • First place daily newspaper editorial writing, Kansas Press Association.
  • Led newsroom team that won international daily newspaper reporting awards in explanatory journalism and investigative journalism.
Instructor • Ottawa University
2000 — 2003
  • Taught courses in business writing, media writing, intercultural communication, persuasive communication, editing, and photography.

  • Advised student newspaper, yearbook and forensics/debate team.

  • Served on faculty committees, advised students. 

Content Director and Manager • IndustryClick Inc
1999 — 2000
  • Created and led development of concepts for multi-million-dollar business-to-business Web sites for PRIMEDIA (now Penton), a $1.7-billion publisher of consumer and business magazines.
  • Supervised content, sales, marketing and business staffs. Negotiated online business partnerships and served as liaison to multiple market-leading PRIMEMEDIA agricultural titles. 

Editorial Director • Vance Publishing Corp.
1990 — 1999
  • Led a 35-person newsroom in the production of an industry leading B2B international weekly newspaper, three magazines and a Web site.
  • Created editorial concepts for three successful magazine launches and led creation of the company's first Web site.
  • Created the editorial plan and oversaw operations for the company's largest-ever publishing venture, which included 10 monthly newspaper sections and a book that attracted more than $1 million in sales.
Managing Editor • East Oregonian
1988 — 1990
  • Supervised newsroom and created news policies.
  • Wrote editorials, won first place in Oregon Newspaper Publishers Association editorial writing contest.
  • Redesigned the newspaper, researched and installed a new computer system and wrote the company's first procedures and policies manual.
Instructor/Faculty Managing Editor • Southern Illinois University
1979 — 1988
  • School of Journalism
    • Recruited, trained and supervised a paid staff of 40 students and graduate student writers and photographers for a 27,000-circulation student daily newspaper.
    • Taught credit courses in copy editing and page design, participated in public service activities and supervised credit practicum experiences for student writers.
  • School of Agriculture
    • Adjunct Instructor - Developed the curriculum and taught credit courses in the college’s agricultural communication program.
    • Public Information Specialist - Led the College of Agriculture’s public information program, including executive communications for the dean, photography, news and general and technical publications.
Farm Editor • The State Journal-Register
1978 — 1979
  • Covered Illinois and national agriculture and agribusiness industries.
  • Named U.S. Agriculture Writer of the Year and U.S. Newspaper Farm Columnist of the Year.
Farm Writer • The Danville Commercial-News
May, 1976 — 1978

Education

Southern Illinois University, Carbondale
MS, Journalism, 1983

Thesis

Agriculture Journalism Curriculum Development
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
BS, Agriculture Communication, 1973

Academic Honors

Cum Laude

Academic Awards

Full tuition scholarship

Awards

  • U.S. Agriculture Writer of the Year, CIBA-GEIGY Corp.
  • Best Farm Columnist, Newspaper Farm Editors of America.
  • Best Editorial, Oregon Newspaper Publishers Association.
  • First Place, Daily Newspaper Editorial Writing, Kansas Press Association.
  • First place Web design, Harris Newspapers in Kansas and Iowa.
  • Burton W. Marvin Kansas News Enterprise Award, 2006, for investigative reporting. Presented by the William Allen White Foundation.
  • First-place awards in “Investigative Reporting” and “Explanatory Journalism” in the international (Canada, United States and Bermuda) Inland Press Association contest.
  • First-place in “Best Investigative Reporting” from the Kansas City Press Club’s three-state Heart of America competition.

Boards

  • Professional Advisory Council, Department of Mass Communication, Northwest Missouri State University, Maryville, MO, since 2001.

Academia

Teaching Experience

  • Adjunct instructor, Johnson County Community College, Overland Park, KS: Continuing Education, communication and life & leisure courses.
  • Instructor, University of Ottawa, Ottawa, KS: Business writing, media writing, intercultural communication, persuasive communication, editing, and photography. Advised student newspaper, yearbook and forensics/debate team.

  • Faculty Managing Editor, Southern Illinois University-Carbondale School of Journalism: Editing and layout. Advised 40-student newsroom of the daily student newspaper.

  • Adjunct Instructor, Southern Illinois University-Carbondale School of Agriculture, Department of Agricultural Education and Mechanization: Practicum experiences and internships in communications, journalism and photography.

Publications

  • Billingsley, Gordon L.: “Burridge Davenal Butler,” Biographical Dictionary ofAmerican Journalism, Joseph P. McKerns, Ed., Greenwood Press, Westport, Conn., 1989.

  • Billingsley, Gordon L.: “Irvin Shrewsbury Cobb,” Biographical Dictionary ofAmerican Journalism, Joseph P. McKerns, Ed., Greenwood Press, Westport, Conn., 1989.

  • Billingsley, Gordon L.: “Elijah Parish Lovejoy,” Biographical Dictionary ofAmerican Journalism, Joseph P. McKerns, Ed., Greenwood Press, Westport, Conn., 1989.

  • Billingsley, Gordon L.: “Frank Ernest Mullen.” Biographical Dictionary ofAmerican Journalism, Joseph P. McKerns, Ed., Greenwood Press, Westport, Conn., 1989. Billingsley, Gordon L.: “Curriculum Delphi Technique Aids Curriculum Planning,” Journalism Educator, 39(2):7-10:14, Summer 1984.

  • Billingsley, Gordon L.: “Newspaper Use of a University’s Regional Farm Column,” ACE Quarterly, 66(3):19-24, July-Sept. 1983.

    Invited Reviews

  • Billingsley, Gordon L.: Frederick R. Steiner and John E. Theilacker, editors, Protecting Farmland. Westport, Conn.; AVI Publishing Co. Inc., 1984. In Illinois Issues, January 1985, p.41.

  • Billingsley, Gordon L.: Howard, Robert P. James R. Howard and the Farm Bureau. Ames: Iowa State University Press, 1983. In Illinois Issues, May 1983, p.25. 

    Papers and Presentations

  • Billingsley, Gordon L.: “Broadcasting Pioneer: Frank Ernest Mullen,” at the first U.S. Agricultural Communicators Congress, Washington, D.C., June 24-27, 1984.

  • Billingsley, Gordon L.: “Agriculture and Agriculture News in the United States,” an invited paper at the Japanese Editors American Press Tour, sponsored by the American Committee of the International Press Institute, Springfield, Ill., Sept. 14, 1981.

  • Billingsley, Gordon L.: “Training Word Processing Operators,” an invited paper presented at the International Convention of Office Systems Executives, sponsored by the IBM Corp., Tarpon Springs, Fla., May 20, 1981.

  • Billingsley, Gordon L.: “A User’s Perspective on Word Processing,” an invited paper presented at the 1981 convention of Guide International, an organization of data processors, Atlanta, Ga., May 14, 1981.

    Editing

  • Copy editor/adviser for Chapter 16: Terrell W. Herzig, Tom Walsh, Lisa A. Gallagher, editors, Implementing Information Security in Health Care. Chicago, Ill.; HIMSS, 2013.

  • Copy editor for two chapters: Gary L. Bloomfield, Stacie L. Shain and Arlen C. Davidson, authors, Duty, Honor, Applause: America’s Entertainers in World War II. Guilford, Conn.; The Lyon Press, 2004.

    Photography

  • Conceived, shot, developed and printed black and photos for “Introduction to Agricultural Sales,” a textbook by Walter J. Wills, from Reston Publishing Co. Inc., Reston, Va., 1982.

  • Shot, developed and printed photos for U.S. Department of Agriculture publications: “Good Support, Leadership Build Progressive Illinois Cooperative,” and “Randolph Service Company: Its Economic Impact,” 1982. Publication Development,

    Design and Redesign

  • The Ottawa Herald, Ottawa, KS, daily newspaper, redesigns in 2005, 2010

  • The Campus, Ottawa University student newspaper, redesign in 2001.

  • Produce Concepts, Vance Publishing, Lenexa, KS, editorial plan and design leadership for an international magazine for foodservice buyers and users of produce in 1999.

  • Global Produce, Vance Publishing, Lenexa, KS, editorial plan and design leadership for magazine for worldwide buyers of Western Hemisphere produce in 1997.

  • Produce Merchandising, Vance Publishing, Lenexa, KS, editorial plan and design leadership for magazine for U.S. and Canada retail buyers of produce in 1992.

  • The Packer, Vance Publishing, Lenexa, KS, editorial plan and redesign of a weekly, market-leading international newspaper for the produce industry in 1990.

  • The East Oregonian, daily newspaper, Pendleton, OR, redesign and pagination system in 1988.

  • AgWeek, prototype weekly agriculture newspaper for Illinois, Copley Newspapers, La Jolla, CA, in 1984.

    Consumer and Trade Research

  • Fresh Trends: a leading national consumer survey of produce 1994-1999 purchasing and consumption behaviors. Vance Publishing Corp., Lincolnshire. Wrote the survey, supervised instrument launch and analysis and oversaw results publications.

  • Fresh Forward: A Delphi (trademark of the Rand Corp.) technique 1999 futurist study of the North American Produce Industry. Vance Publishing Corp., Lincolnshire, Ill., 1999. Conceived the project, oversaw creation of survey instruments, instrument launch and data analysis. Oversaw the publication of the results.