Bill Campbell, a longtime newspaper reporter and editor, will become communications director for the city of Jonesboro on March 7, Mayor Harold Perrin announced last week. The appointment is subject to approval of a salary proposal, which was to be submitted to the City Council last week.
“The chance to use my media background, in a job that seems like I’ve been preparing to do for several years, feels absolutely perfect,” Campbell said. “I will help the mayor and all city leaders as they work to keep Jonesboro progressive and growing, and I will offer another set of ears to help understand what residents want and need.”
A native of Camden, Campbell most recently was information technology, business and entrepreneurial reporter and editor for the Tennessee Valley Publishing Co., which has newspapers in Florence and Decatur, Alabama. Campbell replaces Roy Ockert, retired editor of The Jonesboro Sun, who has filled in as interim communications director during the search for a permanent director.
After obtaining a journalism degree from Louisiana Tech University, Campbell worked for the Dallas Morning News from 1997 to 2004 as a senior writer covering mostly sports. During that time he was also a regular analyst on a Fox Sports Southwest weekly television program and occasionally for ESPN.
In 2004 he became a city editor of the News Star, a Gannett newspaper at Monroe, Louisiana. He also hosted a drive-time radio talk show while selling and recording much of its advertising. Campbell moved to Jackson, Mississippi, in 2009 as an assistant city editor for the Clarion-Ledger. He also was involved in developing and maintaining the newspaper’s website and social media.
Because of his work at City Hall and in the state Capitol, he received a Lifetime Citizen of Jackson Award from the City Council. He was there for two and a half years before accepting a position as metro editor at Decatur.