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Game on: Amazing David Weiss


Some people might think working in public service provides enough jeopardy for one lifetime. Not MEA-MFT member David Weiss. He has wanted to be on the Jeopardy! game show “since I was a little kid,” he says.


Weiss, a professor of media studies and public relations at MSU Billings, got his chance recently. He appeared on Jeopardy! November 17 after passing an online test then auditioning in Denver.
“The whole process took about two years,” he says.


It paid off. Weiss came in second.


"I was in the lead going into Final Jeopardy, but barely,” Weiss reports. “The final category was ‘Organizations.’ The Final Jeopardy ‘answer’ was quite tough, as host Alex Trebex admitted before he revealed it.”

Weiss had bet enough to guarantee his victory with a correct answer. Unfortunately, he didn’t come up with the correct answer. Neither did his opponents, but due to the betting, he ended up second.

David Weiss on Jeopardy


Want to give it a try? Here’s the clue: “The cofounder of this respected organization refused to appear on the cover of Time Magazine, even with his back turned.” The correct response will provide the name of the organization, not the cofounder.


Answer at the end of this article.


We also learned the following about David Weiss:


What I do and why it matters: I teach primarily media studies classes. This year I’m also teaching political media communications.


I think anything to do with media matters. Interacting with media is what we do most of our waking hours. Especially if you’re under 30, you’re never not interacting with the media. You’re using your cell phone, computer, iPod, often all of them at once.


I used to be in advertising in New York. Now I’m dealing with media from a more critical point of view. I like to think my students are more self-aware of their own media use, plus aware of the political and socioeconomic forces behind the media. Some of my students will go into media as a career. I hope they’ll be more ethical practitioners of media because of what they learn.


Why I belong to MEA-MFT: It’s especially important in a state that pays higher educators so little. I’m very happy there’s an organization I can be part of that’s looking out for me, my colleagues, and ultimately, our students.

What I do in my spare time: I don’t have much spare time lately. But I play Scrabble a lot. I’m the top-rated Scrabble player in Montana. I play in the national tournament every year. I also like hiking, skiing, biking, and movies.

Congratulations, David, and thanks for doing Work That Matters for Montana students!


Read about other Amazing MEA-MFT members.


(Here's the answer to the Final Jeopardy question: ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS)