Ron Day receives the Jesse Fine Fellowship in Practical Ethics

Photo of Ron Day

SLIS faculty member, Dr. Ronald Day, has been awarded the Jesse Fine Fellowship in Practical Ethics through Indiana University’s Poynter Center for the Study of Ethics and American Institutions.

The award highlights the creativity of Dr. Day’s approach to this important area of study. Specifically, it supports his development and offering of a course on Library and Information Ethics. The notification letter stated, “Your course … is an excellent fit for the Fellowship’s purpose of fostering education in practical ethics and we are proud to support it.”

The course will be offered for the first time during the Summer II, 2013 session in a condensed format. Watch for S604: Topics in Library and Information Science - "Information Ethics Across Technologies, Media, Institutions, and Societies."

The Poynter Center’s fellowship award demonstrates a strong commitment of Indiana University and the School of Library and Information Science to develop coursework in this foundational area for information professionals.

In an email interview, we asked Dr. Day to comment on the proposed course. He wrote:

•Together with the SLIS courses in Intellectual Freedom and Information Policy, this course will address problems of agency, institutions, and society across a wide range of information technology settings. Whereas the Intellectual Freedom course develops from the point of view of expression and rights of expression, and Information Policy often develops from the point of view of legal and institutional devices and assemblages, such as laws and organizations, this course develops from the point of view of the rational and the social conditions by which choice is made and action produced, both directly by personal and social agents and indirectly through autonomous and semi-autonomous technical systems. These courses give a theoretical and practical foundation for students to engage in professional and everyday considerations of the relation of information and agency across various and overlapping media, computational, and documentary technologies and social assemblages.

About the Poynter Center:
The Poynter Center is an endowed ethics research center at Indiana University Bloomington. The Poynter Center is dedicated to studying a broad range of ethical issues in American public life. Interdisciplinary in aim, the center uses the full resources of Indiana University to initiate research and teaching across traditional academic boundaries.

The center was established in 1972 with funding from the late Nelson Poynter. An alumnus of Indiana University, Mr. Poynter was the chairman of the board of the Times Publishing Company, which publishes the St. Petersburg Times and Congressional Quarterly.

The Poynter Center directs it attention to the entire spectrum of American political and social institutions, drawing on the full resources of the university to carry out its work. The center's projects take a normative perspective. In recent years, the Poynter Center has focused on bioethics, religion, political ethics, research ethics, professional ethics, and technology.

About Jesse Fine:
Jesse David Fine was born July 20, 1907 in Evansville, Indiana. He received an AB degree from Indiana University in 1928 and received his law degree in 1930 from the Indiana University School of Law.

Fine practiced law in Evansville from 1930 to 1936. Fine and his two brothers owned Premier Theaters in Evansville, which at one time included nine theaters. By the late 1950s and early 1960s the brothers had sold or closed a number of the theaters, selling the last theaters around 1966. In 1953 the Fine brothers started WFIE television station in Evansville. They sold the station in 1956. They opened and later sold other stations in St. Joseph and Jefferson City, Missouri.

Fine married Dorothy Seegal in 1958 in Sarasota, Florida. Dorothy and Jesse retired to Florida in 1966. Once he arrived, Fine partnered with two other broadcasters and established a new radio station in Ft. Lauderdale, which was later sold. Fine played golf and did community and charitable work. He wrote the IU Alumni Association in 1978 that he and Dorothy traveled “quite a bit.”

Fine died Nov. 11, 1985 in Hollywood, Florida. Once Dorothy Fine became involved with Indiana University, she wanted to create a fellowship in practical and professional ethics in her husband’s name. She died in 2010. This fellowship is the result of her generosity.

Posted April 17, 2013