About Al

aldec2015-jpg email: tompkins@poynter.org

727.553-4229 (o)

Twitter: @atompkins

Al’s website focused on helping journalists cover gun issues: www.coveringguns.com

Al Tompkins is one of America’s most requested journalism and multi-media instructors.

After nearly 30 years working as a reporter, photojournalist, producer, investigative reporter, head of special investigations and News Director, Tompkins joined the Poynter Institute where he is Senior Faculty for Broadcast and Online.

He is the author of “Aim for the Heart” a textbook about multimedia storytelling that has been adopted by more than 100 universities worldwide.

Tompkins is a FAA licensed drone pilot.

He has a master’s degree in Digital Journalism and Design from USF-St Pete.

He has taught in 49 states, and has taught journalists around the globe including working in Canada, Egypt, Denmark, South Africa, Ecuador, Iceland and Cayman Islands and beyond.

Tompkins is the recipient of some of journalism’s highest awards including The National Emmy, the Japan Prize, The American Bar Association’s Silver Gavel, The Peabody, 7 National Headliner Awards, The Robert F Kennedy Award and The Iris Award. He was inducted into the Kentucky Journalism Hall of Fame and honored with The Governor’s Award from the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences.

Tompkins helped to author the national codes of ethics for both the National Press Photographers Association and the Radio and Television Digital News Association.

He has taught workshops for hundreds of clients in the last 14 years including NBC, Telemundo, CBS, Univision, Entravision, CNN, FOX, ABC, KNBC, WNBC, WCCO, KHOU, WFAA, KING, KARE, KTUU, KCBS, WJLA, WRC, WTVJ, WFOR, WTVF, National Public Radio, The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, CTV, Global TV, Bay News 9, WTSP, WTVF, WEWS, WPTV, News 8 Austin, WTHR, The Sacramento Bee, The Charlotte Observer and many many more. He has also taught on college campuses including Harvard, Boston University, Western Kentucky University, University of Texas-Austin, University of Indiana, University of Kentucky, University of Tennessee, Kansas University, University of Nebraska-Omaha, Belmont University, Florida Gulf Coast, Indiana State University, Ball State University, Eckerd College, University of South Florida, Middle Tennessee State and many others.



  1. And to think it all started at WPKY in little ole Princeton, KY! I believe WNBS, Murray, KY, was next–right? From there it all gets a bit foggy for me. 😉

    Seriously, I have just spent a little time banging around on your website and I am (not surprisingly) impressed–and proud! It’s all good stuff.


  2. Al, I caught your seminar at the University of Kansas (KAB) this week. Spectacular. Clear, late-breaking, relevant.
    Loved it.

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