Jill Geisler

Affiliate, Leadership and Management

Contact Information


If you want to learn the secrets of being a great leader, ask Jill Geisler. For years, she has guided managers – from the novice to the veteran – toward success. In seminars, workshops and within organizations, she brings humor and humanity to her well-informed teaching and coaching.

Geisler holds the Bill Plante Chair in Leadership and Media Integrity at Loyola University Chicago.

She is the author of “Work Happy: What Great Bosses Know,” a workshop-in-a-book that’s helping leaders in all fields, worldwide. Her popular “What Great Bosses Know” podcasts on iTunes U have been downloaded millions of times.

As a Poynter faculty member from 1998-2014, she helped guide Poynter’s leadership and management programs. She came to Poynter after a 26-year career in broadcast journalism and several walls full of national and local journalism honors. Geisler brought experience in reporting, producing, anchoring and unique expertise in management. She became one of the country’s first female TV news directors of a major market network affiliate at the age of 27. She built an award-winning newsroom culture at WITI in Milwaukee. Hers was a teaching newsroom, where coaching and collaboration were as important as ethics and enterprise; where fun and families mattered, too.

Today, in her Loyola role and as principal of Jill Geisler Leadership, LLC, she can be found helping other news organizations improve quality and performance through first-rate leadership. The long, long list of organizations she’s served includes NPR, APME, ASNE, RTDNA, PRNDI, the Associated Press, The McClatchy publications, the Raycom stations group, The Atlanta Journal Constitution, the Minneapolis Star Tribune, The John S. Knight Fellowships at Stanford, and DR - the Danish broadcasting corporation. Amid all this, she’s also in demand as a trainer and coach for leaders in professions of all kinds, including medicine, law, higher ed and technology.

Geisler holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Wisconsin and a master’s degree in leadership and liberal studies from Duquesne University. She’s been inducted into multiple journalism halls of fame, including the prestigious Silver Circle of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. For her career contributions, The University of Wisconsin awarded her its “Distinguished Service to Journalism” honor.

Geisler lives in Bayside (a suburb of Milwaukee), Wisconsin. She is married to Neil Jaehnert. They have two sons, Noah and MacNeil.