MediaFest22 is a unique and inspiring journalism convention experience, bringing together professional journalists, student journalists and college media advisers from every area of journalism, from across the country, to our nation’s capital. Attendees will hear from renowned speakers; benefit from hands-on workshops, general sessions and concurrent breakout sessions; enjoy networking opportunities; soak up everything the exhibit hall has to offer; celebrate during awards presentations, banquets and receptions; unwind during tours of the city and historical sites – and so much more!
Learn about journalism and media trends, new digital tools, emerging technologies and career opportunities. But that’s just the beginning. You’ll also get to delve into topics like tools for investigative journalism and newsroom diversity, as well as covering hot button issues like immigration and healthcare. MediaFest22 will provide a place to network, gain career feedback and explore new opportunities.
MediaFest22 brings together SPJ, the most broad-based professional journalism organization in the country, with ACP and CMA, who have partnered for more than 60 years to host one of the most inspiring student and professional media events.
No matter where you are in your career – an undergrad student journalist, a mid-career journalist or a retiree, MediaFest22 will create the environment for one-on-one connections, inspirational messages from keynote speakers and tools and strategies to take back to your newsroom or classroom.
Keep checking back for more details as events and sessions are added and follow #MediaFest22 on social media for all the latest information. We can’t wait to see you in D.C. this October!
- Pauly DenetclawPauly Denetclaw, a citizen of the Navajo Nation, is Haltsooí (Meadow People) born for Kinyaa’áanii (Towering House People).Read more
- Seung Min KimSeung Min Kim is a White House reporter for The Associated Press, specializing in the Biden administration’s relationship with Capitol Hill.Read more
- Juana SummersJuana Summers is a co-host of NPR’s “All Things Considered,” alongside Ailsa Chang, Ari Shapiro and Mary Louise Kelly. She joined the program in June 2022.Read more
- Woodward and Bernstein
In 1973, Woodward and Bernstein were awarded the Pulitzer Prize for their Watergate coverage at The Washington Post, leading to the resignation of President Richard Nixon and setting new standards for investigative journalism. The pair went on to write two classic best-sellers: All the President’s Men (also a movie starring Robert Redford and Dustin Hoffman); and The Final Days, chronicling the end of the Nixon presidency. On the 50th anniversary of the Watergate break-in, join legendary reporters Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein as they discuss the famous investigative story, how they broke it and its lasting impact on journalism.
The Society of Professional Journalists recognizes Jerry Green, Roland Martin, John Quiñones, Clarissa Ward and Bill Whitaker as Fellows of the Society, the highest professional honor awarded by SPJ, for extraordinary contribution to the profession of journalism.
The Fellows will be honored at SPJ’s annual convention Oct. 27-30 in Washington, D.C. SPJ launched the Fellows of the Society program in 1948 and has named three or more Fellows every year since.
Featured precon session
- Precon Presentation
Mobile Tools and More for Your Newsroom
When: Oct. 26, 1:00-4:00 P.M
Learn how to use the best and coolest mobile apps for reporting and editing on the go. Explore useful, free desktop tools in this hands-on workshop. Make sure to bring a laptop and be ready to learn some new tips and tricks. Participants will get handouts with links to tools, examples, training videos, exercises and much more.
Presenter: Mike Reilley, Founder and Editor, JournalistsToolbox.org and Senior Lecturer in Data and Digital journalism, University of Illinois Chicago
Early bird rates (by October 4):
Retired/Post Grad: $180
Non-member student: $180
Regular rates (October 5 – October 26)
Retired/Post Grad: $260
Non-member student: $180.
On site rates:
Retired/Post Grad: $360
Non-member student: $180
Extra President’s Awards Banquet tickets: $90
View our COVID-19 Policy
- The Filmed Blue Line: How to Get Body and Dash Cam Footage in a Post-Floyd EraJoy Ramsingh, Attorney, Ramsingh Legal (@mjoyramsingh) Joy Ramsingh’s national law practice focuses on government transparency issues. Prior to establishing her firm, Joy served as appellate/Amicus Curiae counsel at the Pennsylvania Office of Open Records, where she also issued hundreds of binding legal opinions in public records appeals. Above all, Joy loves a good FOIA war story.The power of dash and body cam footage is indisputable — one cellphone video sparked a global movement in police accountability. Obtaining this footage allows you to tell the stories that deserve to be told. This session teaches you how these records requests differ from others and gives you practical tools to handle them. Learn to spot request pitfalls, anticipate common agency responses and master compelling arguments to rebut denials. Understand how to preserve appeal deadlines and how to handle delayed responses. Experience a mock agency/requester negotiation session and leave prepared to get footage you need.
- Talking to Strangers: How to Get the Eager, the Reluctant and Even the Haters to Give a Good InterviewDean Nelson, Director, Journalism Program, Point Loma Nazarene University, San Diego Dean Nelson is the founder and director of the journalism program at Point Loma Nazarene University in San Diego, and host of the annual Writer's Symposium By The Sea. His book is Talk To Me: How To Ask Better Questions, Get Better Answers, and Interview Anyone Like a Pro (HarperCollins).Interviewing is the single most important way journalists get information. Yet sometimes the perfect interview feels more like luck than skill. But great interviews aren’t the result of serendipity and intuition. They’re the result of careful planning and good journalistic habits. This session will give you the tools you’ll need to get people to talk to you, and to get worthwhile information from them. This is a useful session particularly for younger journalists who feel perhaps too tied to screens for their information, when it is faces and voices that reveal one’s true humanity.
- 25 Ways to Engage and Volunteer in SPJClaire Regan, President-elect, Society of Professional Journalists Claire Regan is an assistant professor at Wagner College in New York City and a contributing writer for the Staten Island Advance. She is past president of the New York City Deadline Club and president-elect of SPJ national. Ms. Regan completed a yearlong fellowship in journalism ethics at the Poynter Institute and received the Charles O’Malley Award for Excellence in Teaching from the Columbia Scholastic Press Association.SPJ provides so many opportunities for professional and organizational growth. We need and want you to get the most out of your membership, not in a transactional but transformational way. Learn about the various ways you can engage in the Society to get the biggest bang for your membership buck. Get an overview of the many leadership and volunteer opportunities for you to contribute your talents and skills. Finally, take this opportunity to think about the exact talents, skills and outcomes you want from your future volunteer and engagement experiences.
- FOIA and College Athletics ReportingWesley Wright, Assistant Director of Student Media, Florida Atlantic University and SPJ Florida Board Member Wesley Wright is the Assistant Director of Student Media at Florida Atlantic University and an SPJ Florida board member. He previously reported on education in three states (Florida, Colorado, and Virginia) prior to becoming a student media administrator.Odds are, your sports reporting is too deferential to the institution you cover, and the administrators and coaches want you none the wiser. Learn how and where public records reporting can be beneficial in finding stories within your university’s athletic department, and how that department folds into your college or university more broadly.
- The (Twitter) Balancing Act: Keeping Safe While Seeking Truth and Reporting It
It’s the social media platform at the core of disseminating information — and the platform that has been the most associated with online abuse toward journalists. So, how do you navigate one of journalism’s catch-22 scenarios — seeking truth and reporting it through Twitter while also taking care of yourself? Hear from two local reporters known for their political coverage, and who have used Twitter to engage and inform, on how they navigate it. You’ll leave with details on being a great reporter on Twitter without feeding the trolls.
- Ashanti Blaize-Hopkins, Santa Monica College Ashanti Blaize-Hopkins is a journalism professor at Santa Monica College in Santa Monica, CA and an Emmy Award-winning journalist, PR expert and author. She has worked as a television news anchor and reporter for local FOX, CBS and NBC stations. Ashanti currently serves as the president of SPJ/LA.
- Sarah Wire, Staff Writer, Los Angeles Times (@sarahdwire) Sarah D. Wire covers the Justice Department and national security for the L.A. Times with a focus on the Jan. 6, 2021 insurrection and domestic extremism. Wire is a Sigma Delta Chi Award winner and was part of the Times’ team that won a 2015 Pulitzer Prize for Breaking News.
- Time Now for the SPJ Story Exchange: Breaking and Enterprise in a Digital Age
The balance between breaking news and enterprise reporting can be, at best, a delicate one for student and professional journalists. Hear from journalists who have done both breaking news and enterprise reporting. If you’re looking for ways to make your stories stronger, then this session is for you. You’ll enjoy the opportunity to hear some great stories, and you’ll return to work ready to seek truth and report it in new ways.
- Elizabeth Smith, Pepperdine University Hi Elizabeth - please fill your bio info right here. Please update the phone number above (I used my SPJ phone #). And, please put your title, Twitter handle, etc. above! Thank you!
- Sarah McCammon, National Correspondent, NPR (@sarahmccammon) Sarah McCammon is a national correspondent for NPR and a frequent guest host of its programs. Her reporting primarily focuses on cultural, social and political divides, including abortion and reproductive rights, and the intersection of politics and religion. She was also their lead correspondent covering President Trump's 2016 campaign.
- April Bethea, Deputy Education Editor, The Washington Post (@aprilbethea) April Bethea is a deputy education editor at The Washington Post, and previously worked as night local editor and a national homepage editor. Bethea also worked at The Charlotte Observer. She currently serves on the SPJ Foundation board, and served on SPJ boards in Charlotte, DC and multiple national committees.
- Working for You and On Your Side: Consumer InvestigationsCaresse Jackman, National Consumer Investigative Reporter, Investigate TV/Gray Television (@CaresseJ) Caresse Jackman is a National Consumer Investigative Reporter based in Washington D.C. with Gray Television’s Investigate TV. Prior to Investigate TV, she was a Consumer Investigative Reporter at WSMV-TV in Nashville, TN and has reported at WWL-TV in New Orleans, WJRT in Flint, MI and WCBI in Columbus, MS.Everywhere you turn, it appears as though there is a new scam emerging from the shadows. It is why consumer investigations are so important. Whether they’re long-form investigations or a two-minute piece, in this session we will share how you can effectively navigate the consumer investigative world while telling compelling stories that build trust between you and the community and show that you’re truly working hard for them. We’ll also share tips and story ideas that you can take home to your news market.
- Fundraising Basics: Principles & Techniques (Part 1)Ann Fitzgerald, Faculty Member, The Fund Raising School at Indiana University’s Lilly Family School of Philanthropy. Ann Fitzgerald is a faculty member at The Fund Raising School at IU’s Lilly Family School of Philanthropy. She is founder of AC Fitzgerald (www.acfitzgerald.com), a consulting firm offering strategic advice and communications to nonprofits. Ann has a master’s degree in philanthropic studies from Indiana University.Part 1: Expand your nonprofit by developing your fundraising skills! In this hands-on session, learn about the current philanthropic landscape to discover where funds are coming from and where you should look. You will learn to utilize the fundraising cycle and six rights of fundraising to connect and develop your nonprofit’s donor network.
- Shooting a Story With Your Mobile PhoneMike Castellucci, Artist in Residence/Storyteller, Michigan State University (@MikeCastellucci) Mike’s stories are featured around the world. His brand of storytelling just won him the National Edward R. Murrow award in New York City. He has been awarded 29 regional Emmys. And he does it differently. Mike uses only his phone, entirely.“Storytelling” has certainly become a buzz word. There was a time in local news a couple decades ago when there was hardly any storytelling. It was just fires, car wrecks, crime. Since then, it has made a resurgence and the most respected journalists are those who can craft a story. In this session, dissect what makes a good story. Learn what one storyteller has learned by telling stories with his phone for the past eight years and how he does it.
- How to Investigate the Privatization of Public Services
Across the country, federal agencies and state and local governments are accelerating the pace of privatization. From water systems to public schools, virtually every type of public service and asset is being shifted to private control. While some claim the private sector is more efficient than government, outsourcing has often resulted in corruption, cost overruns, service failures, less transparency and greater inequality. In this session, journalists will share tactics from their investigations of privatization in public education, the criminal justice system and economic development.
- Jeremy Mohler, Communications Director, In the Public Interest (@futuredebris) Jeremy Mohler is communications director of In the Public Interest, a national nonprofit research and policy organization that studies public goods and services and advocates for a government that works for all of us.
- Tony Messenger, Metro Columnist, St. Louis Post-Dispatch Pulitzer Prize winning journalist Tony Messenger is the St. Louis Post-Dispatch's metro columnist. His first book, "Profit and Punishment: How America Criminalizes the Poor in the Name of Poverty," was published in December 2021.
- Angélica Serrano-Román, State Tax Policy Reporter, Bloomberg Tax Angélica Serrano-Román covers state tax policy for Bloomberg Tax. Before joining Tax, she worked as a reporter and web editor for Puerto Rico’s Center for Investigative Journalism.
- Jeff Bryant, Advocacy Journalist and Director, Education Opportunity Network Jeff Bryant is an advocacy journalist and director of the Education Opportunity Network, a strategy and messaging center for progressive education policy.
- Small Effort, Big Payoff Video and Audio TricksBrian Champagne, Freelance Journalist, Utah State University (@newschamp) Brian Champagne worked 22 years in television news in four markets, including Chief Photographer at KTXL-TV in Sacramento.Stop making your viewers and listeners’ ears work so hard in your stories. That shotgun mic on your camera isn’t as good as you think it is. Learn some simple basics to make your audio sound great, including the most important technical factor when recording sound, when to use headphones, why you can use headphones as a microphone and what to do when your mic cuts out right before an important interview. Learn how to make a small effort get a big payoff for whatever sounds you’re recording. Your viewers will thank you.
- Freelancer-Editor Meet & Greet: Connecting Freelance Journalists and the Editors Who Hire Them
Finding dependable freelancers and the editors who hire them can be an arduous task for both sides. This session will bridge the gap. Attendees will rotate in small groups to meet face-to-face with national and local editors. Editors will offer tips on how to pitch to their outlet, what stories they’re looking for, mistakes to avoid, who to contact and so much more. Attendees will leave with access to specific pitching guidelines and contacts for more than 450 media outlets and editors. Make sure you bring resumes and business cards to this one!
- Stacie Overton Johnson, Freelance Journalist/TV Producer Stacie Overton Johnson is the vice chair of SPJ’s Freelance Community. She has freelanced for HGTV, E! Entertainment, network news outlets, and more. She was the food editor at The National, a daily in Abu Dhabi from 2013 - 2017. She lives in New York, writing for the show Goodtaste.
- Missy Frederick, Cities Director, Eater Missy Frederick is the Cities Director for Eater, overseeing 25 city sites nationwide. She was promoted to management after spending four years as the editor of Eater DC. She has previously worked as a reporter for The Washington Business Journal, The Washington Examiner, Space News, and The Southampton Press.
- Marjorie Censer, Editor, Defense News Marjorie Censer is the editor of Defense News. She was previously editor of Inside Defense. She also worked as the defense editor at Politico and as a staff writer at the Washington Post, the Carroll County Times, and the Princeton Packet. A Fairfax, Va. native, Censer graduated from Princeton University.
- Jourdan Bennett-Begaye, Editor, Indian Country Today Jourdan Bennett-Begaye, Diné, is the editor for Indian Country Today and a board member of the Native American Journalists Association. Bennett-Begaye received her master's degree in magazine, newspaper, and online journalism through the Newhouse Minorities Fellowship at the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University in New York.
- Building the Next Generation of Community and Investigative Journalists
Community and investigative reporting offer journalism students a remarkable range of opportunities to make an immediate difference in people’s day-to-day lives through their work, but teaching the advanced skills needed to “dive deep” can be challenging. This panel will focus on best practices to overcome the obstacles that many student journalists face in carrying out community and investigative reporting projects, as well as ways to publish, market and brand their work in university-based and professional media outlets.
- Mario Murillo, Vice Dean, Hofstra University Herbert School of Communication (@marioradio99) Mario Murillo is a radio professor and vice dean at Hofstra University's Herbert School of Communication. In his 30-plus years in radio, he has served as a program director, host and producer for WBAI Pacifica Radio and a feature reporter for NPR’s Latino USA, among many other assignments.
- Scott Brinton, Journalism Professor, Hofstra University (@ScottBrinton1) Hofstra journalism professor Scott Brinton edits/advises the Herbert School's award-winning Long Island Advocate, the online multimedia publication for off-campus reporting, and Pulse Magazine, and co-directs the university's Summer High School Journalism Institute. He previously was Herald Community Newspapers executive editor and had reported for The New York Times and Newsday.
- Megan Naftali, News Editor, Hofstra Chronicle (@MeganNaftali) Megan Naftali, a Press Club of Long Island scholarship winner, is an editor for Hofstra's Long Island Advocate and news editor of the Hofstra Chronicle, the student newspaper. She is currently enrolled in Hofstra's dual BA/MA journalism degree.
- Chris Vaccaro, Vice President, Digital News, Altice USA, and Director, Hofstra University Graduate Journalism Program (@ChrisVaccaro) Chris Vaccaro is vice president of Digital News at Altice USA, and director of and an adjunct professor for Hofstra's graduate journalism program. He is also SPJ's Region 1 coordinator, and a board member and past president of the Press Club of Long Island.
- Elections in a time of turmoil: What every journalist needs to know
The midterms are just days away. But this year, more is at stake than control of Congress. Our democracy hangs in the balance. Since 2021, two dozen states enacted laws to suppress the vote or permit interference in elections. More than a third of voters believe the 2020 election was rigged, and droves of experienced poll workers have quit, weary of harassment. Three election experts will offer news you can use on recent changes to state election laws, efforts to help citizens who face problems on election day and the rights of journalists to cover what happens at the polls.
- Jeanette Senecal, Senior Director, Mission Impact for the League of Women Voters Jeanette Senecal is the Senior Director of Mission Impact for the League of Women Voters. For over 20 years, she’s protected voters’ rights, mobilized voters from traditionally underrepresented communities, and supported free, fair, and accessible elections. Jeanette leads the award-winning VOTE411.org website and initiatives such as the Democracy Truth Project.
- Shannon Jankowski, Staff Attorney, Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press Shannon Jankowski is a staff attorney at the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press, providing amicus support for journalists and news organizations. She works on matters involving access to courts and records, defamation, anti-SLAPP motions, newsgathering torts, and other First Amendment issues, including reporters’ rights to cover elections.
- Liz Howard, Senior Counsel, Brennan Center’s Democracy Program Liz Howard serves as senior counsel for the Brennan Center’s Democracy Program. She previously served as the deputy commissioner of elections in Virginia. Howard regularly comments for television, radio, and print media on issues relating to election administration and election security and has testified before Congress and several state legislatures.
- Obstruction of Reporting through PIO Controls and Other Means: Responding to the Controls on Free Speech and Free Press
One of the most damaging threats to free press is the trend over three to four decades in government, businesses and other institutions banning employees and others from speaking to journalists. Sometimes bans are total. Sometimes they prohibit contact without notification of authorities, often through public information offices. They damage our reporting while we tend to think what we get is all there is. What are journalists’ responsibilities to oppose these restrictions? How can we build skills for dealing with blockages and push back on the policy level against the existence of the restrictions on national, state and local levels?
- Haisten Willis, Reporter, Washington Examiner, and Chair, SPJ Freedom of Information Committee Haisten Willis is a reporter for the Washington Examiner and chair of the Society of Professional Journalists Freedom of Information Committee.
- Cinnamon Janzer, Freelance Journalist (@cinnamonjanzer) Cinnamon Janzer is a freelance journalist. She has written for CJR about both the obstruction of reporting through PIOs in the Minneapolis Police Department a year before George Floyd was murdered as well as speech controls placed on CDC employees in the early pandemic days.
- Kathryn Foxhall, Freelance Reporter and Vice Chair, SPJ Freedom of Information Committee (@KathF) Kathryn Foxhall, a reporter of over 40 years, is a point person for opposing gag rules in agencies, businesses, etc., that ban employees and others from speaking to reporters without notifying authorities. Last year she received the Wells Key, the highest honor for an SPJ member, specifically for that work.
- Glen Nowak, Professor and Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Studies, University of Georgia Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication Glen Nowak, Ph.D., is a Professor and Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Studies at the University of Georgia Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication. Previously, he was at the U.S. CDC for 14 years, including six years as the agency’s Director of Media Relations.
- Thinking About the Facts: The Good, the Bad and the UglyChristopher Karadjov, California State University, Long Beach Christopher Karadjov has been a journalist and journalism educator for 30+ years. He has worked in print, broadcast and digital-only publications on two continents in three languages. Karadjov studies journalism practices, media effects and patterns of information flow.Learn how your newsroom can present stronger, more visually appealing content for readers and viewers. In this how-to session you will learn about the changing role of public information officers, given the evolving and dynamic media landscape. Presenters will discuss options to help you connect with experts, find data, graphics, photography and b-roll — all cost-free content to enhance your storytelling. The session also explores how to best approach public information officers who are circumventing your requests and offer tips for building a transparent and resourceful relationship with them. These tips are applicable for reporters covering all beats.
- Lehman College – City Limits Journalism Collaborative
The Bronx is the seventh largest U.S. municipality by population according to the U.S. Census, yet it has minimal coverage of news and politics as a borough of New York City. This urban news desert is ignored by large mainstream media, leaving a vastly underserved population with small grassroots journalism organizations struggling to serve them. The Lehman City Limits Collaborative draws on the lived experiences of journalism students from the Bronx and the credibility and reach of an established online news operation to fill this void. This curriculum-based project prepares and equips new urban journalists to report on their neglected communities.
- Jim Carney, Assistant Professor, Lehman College – City University of New York, (@JimCarney57) Carney teaches Journalism at Lehman College, earned his BA at Fordham and DJ’d at WFUV-FM. At Time Warner Cable, he earned multiple CableAces & Emmys and later led Bronxnet Community TV before joining Lehman. Carney also served as founding Academic Director of the CUNY Online Baccalaureate, Media Communications & Society.
- Daniel Parra, Spanish Language Editor, City Limits (@dparramejia) Daniel Parra, City Limits' Spanish-language editor/reporter, is a seasoned investigative reporter from Colombia. He has worked as a freelancer for more than seven years and has covered war, politics, religion, culture, fashion, and beers. Daniel loves poetry, short stories, and long-form journalism.
- Victor Martinez, Lehman College Journalism Student Victor Marinez is a Journalism Major at Lehman College-CUNY in The Bronx. He is a writer who is obsessed with storytelling, whether that be journalism or fiction. He believes there is no greater feeling than sharing a good story with the world.
- Valeria Martinez, Lehman College Journalism Student Valeria Martinez is a Journalism Major at Lehman College-CUNY, a first generation college student and an immigrant from Mexico. She is passionate about her career in Journalism. Martinez is not only determined, but more than willing to take the extra step to get a story done.
- Tips for Working with Your PIO
Learn how your newsroom can present stronger, more visually appealing content for readers and viewers. In this how-to session you will learn about the changing role of public information officers, given the evolving and dynamic media landscape. Presenters will discuss options to help you connect with experts, find data, graphics, photography and b-roll — all cost-free content to enhance your storytelling. The session also explores how to best approach public information officers who are circumventing your requests and offer tips for building a transparent and resourceful relationship with them. These tips are applicable for reporters covering all beats.
- Sandra Baltazar Martínez, Senior Public Information Officer, University of California, Riverside (@sbaltazarm) Before joining UCR, Sandra’s 18-year career as a bilingual journalist included The Press-Enterprise, The Santa Fe New Mexican, and most recently managing editor for La Prensa (Inland Empire). Among other accolades, she is a Knight Foundation Fellow. Sandra holds a master’s in community journalism from the University of Alabama.
- La Monica Everett-Haynes, Associate Vice President and Chief Communications Officer for Strategic Communications and Public Affairs, San Diego State University (@SDSU) La Monica holds more than 20 years of combined experience as a journalist, communications professional and higher education researcher and scholar. Among other responsibilities, she leads a team that oversees news, marketing, and issues management and crisis communications. She earned a M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Arizona.
- Freelancing 101: How and When to Hang Out Your Shingle
There’s no “best” time for journalists to give freelancing a try — you can get started as soon as you know how to put a story together. Freelancing can be good for student journalists, recent grads, as a full-time pursuit or a side gig to other ventures, when you’re laid off, or as a step-down to retirement. You just need to know how to get started! This session will show you the basics — how to find work through networking and pitching — and provide business tools you need to begin working as an independent journalist.
- Hazel Becker, Freelance Journalist (@spjhazel) Hazel Becker spent 50 years writing, editing and developing publications for niche audiences. She freelanced before and after 30 years of employment with BNA, a D.C. publishing company now part of Bloomberg. In retirement she volunteers for SPJ and is a founding member and former chair of its Freelance Community.
- Katherine Reynolds Lewis, Independent Journalist (@KatherineLewis) Award-winning science journalist Katherine Reynolds Lewis covers children, social justice, and mental health for the Atlantic, New York Times, and Undark. Her book, The Good News About Bad Behavior, grew from Mother Jones’ most-read story. Founder of the Institute for Independent Journalists, she's former national correspondent for Newhouse and Bloomberg.
- Candace Y.A. Montague, Independent Journalist (@urbanbushwoman9) Candace Y.A. Montague is an award-winning online and print freelance journalist in Washington, DC. She has over 12 years experience covering health, racial and gender equality and social justice issues for several local, trade, and national publications.
- Clayton Gutzmore, Freelance Journalist (@moregutz72) Candace Y.A. Montague is an award-winning online and print freelance journalist in Washington, DC. She has over 12 years experience covering health, racial and gender equality and social justice issues for several local, trade, and national publications.
- Creating Compelling Visuals for Breaking NewsAlessandra Freitas, Associate Producer, CNN Award winning multimedia journalist currently working as an Associate Producer at CNN. Alessandra has worked at Dow Jones, ProPublica and HuffPost. She started her career as a reporter in Brazil, and has since produced remarkable multimedia reporting, working in the intersectionality of journalism, innovation & technology and business.We are living in a world of on-going crisis that leads to constant major breaking news. As journalists, we’re often in situations where we have little time to analyze data, extract relevant points and transform complicated numbers into digestible visual content that can offer context and add up to the topic in question. Whether you’re working on a quick turn-around live broadcast or a timely digital story, this session will approach how to quickly spot the right numbers and use the right tools to that save time, while also helping you create engaging and informative graphics.
- Telling the Stories of Vulnerable People: A Conversation About Trauma-Informed Journalism
Whether reporting on gun violence, social justice, COVID-19, sexual assault, climate disaster or gender identity, journalists often speak with people or sources experiencing traumatic events. Knowing how to bring sensitivity and earn trust is essential for telling those impactful stories with honesty. Experienced panelists will offer best practices for trauma-informed reporting, including ways to establish and maintain trust, elicit impactful narratives, tell the story with care and respect and maintain story integrity throughout editing. Panelists will also offer resources for reporters to protect their own mental well-being. There will be time for questions and sharing experiences.
- Sandy West, Independent Journalist Sandy West is a former full-time staff writer for local newspapers, business publications and the Associated Press. She is currently an independent journalist writing on health-related issues, juvenile justice, child welfare. She has reported on the AIDS crisis, murder trials, mental health issues, Covid, and political attacks on transgender youth.
- Ann Hinga Klein, Independent Journalist Ann Hinga Klein, an independent journalist, has covered forced migration, gender identity, climate change, homicide and domestic violence. She reported on the pandemic’s devastation in America’s prisons and jails for The New York Times and was part of a team awarded the 2021 Pulitzer Prize for Public Service.
- Jourdan Bennett-Begaye, Editor, Indian Country Today Jourdan Bennett-Begaye is the editor of ICT. She is the first woman to be the chief news executive and top editor of the 40-year-old newspaper and website. She is Diné and based in Washington, D.C. She is also a Native American Journalists Association (NAJA) board member.
- Naseem Miller, Senior Health Editor, The Journalist's Resource Naseem Miller is senior health editor at The Journalist's Resource, where she also reports on the intersection of journalism and trauma. She was part of the Orlando Sentinel’s 2016 Pulitzer Prize finalist reporting team that covered the Pulse nightclub shooting. In 2017, she co-started the Journalists Covering Trauma Facebook group.
- Write your own FOIA letterNerissa Young, Associate Professor of Instruction, Ohio University (@NerissaYoung1) Nerissa Young has taught or worked in journalism in Mississippi, Ohio, Oklahoma and West Virginia. She is the author of "Mass Communication Law in West Virginia, 2nd Edition." Young has served on SPJ's Watchdog, Ethics and Education committees. She advises the Ohio University SPJ chapter.Attendees at this workshop will walk away with a custom Freedom of Information Act request to the agency of their choice requesting the information of their choice. Bring a device with you, so you can hit “send” and start your search for information at session’s end. This session is great for campus journalists who are stonewalled by administrators. It presents opportunities for investigative and data projects. Anyone who wants to learn to use FOIA is invited.
- How to Get Your Investigative Projects Funded
Learn about grants and fellowships that are available to support investigative journalists — and get tips on how to apply for them successfully. This session will provide concrete resources, leads and tips from both leaders of organizations and journalists who have successfully secured funding from them. Gain specific ideas for funding sources that could support your reporting, concrete tips on how to structure effective proposals for funding and contact information for funders who you can follow up with for help applying for funding.
- Eric Ferrero, Executive Director, Fund for Investigative Journalism (@ericferrero) Eric Ferrero is the Executive Director of the Fund for Investigative Journalism, the 53-year-old national organization that provides funding, editorial mentorship and legal help directly to reporters. He has 25 years of experience in nonprofit and philanthropic leadership, working closely with journalists at the local, state and national levels.
- Margaret Engel, Executive Director, Alicia Patterson Journalism Foundation Margaret Engel directs the Alicia Patterson Journalism Foundation, which gives grants to journalists in the name of Alicia Patterson, the founder of Newsday. She was a reporter for the Washington Post, Des Moines Register and Lorain (OH) Journal and was a Nieman fellow at Harvard, studying worker health and law.
- Strength in Numbers: Building Coalitions to Advocate for Press Freedom
Our industry is at a crossroads where journalist access and press freedoms are constantly under attack. This session will show you how to build coalitions between journalism organizations, media unions and First Amendment advocacy groups in your area to help advocate for press freedoms through policy at the state level and beyond. Hear from representatives from the Los Angeles Journalist Coalition who successfully lobbied to get California State Bill 98, legislation that protects journalists from detention or arrest while covering civil unrest, passed into law. Find out how this coalition continues to mobilize when press freedoms are at risk.
- Ashanti Blaize-Hopkins, Journalism Professor, Santa Monica College Ashanti Blaize-Hopkins is a journalism professor at Santa Monica College in Santa Monica, CA and an Emmy Award-winning journalist, PR expert and author. She has worked as a television news anchor and reporter for local FOX, CBS and NBC stations. Ashanti currently serves as the president of SPJ/LA.
- Yvette Cabrera Senior Reporter, Center for Public Integrity Yvette Cabrera is a senior reporter at the Center for Public Integrity covering inequality in economic and social well-being. She reports at the intersection of justice and equity, examining the impact of systemic disparities. She currently serves as vice president/digital for the National Association of Hispanic Journalists.
- Matt Pearce, Reporter, Los Angeles Times Matt is the president of Media Guild of the West, which represents NewsGuild journalists in Southern California, Arizona and Texas. He is a reporter for the Los Angeles Times and a University of Missouri graduate.
- Julie Patel-Liss, Journalism Professor, California State University, Los Angeles Julie Patel is a journalism professor and a national Emmy Award-winning journalist. She previously worked at Fullerton College and before that, the Better Government Association and the Center for Public Integrity, investigative journalism nonprofits. She is currently the president of Asian American Journalists Association's Los Angeles chapter.
- Fundraising Basics: Principles & Techniques (Part 2)Ann Fitzgerald, Faculty Member, The Fund Raising School at Indiana University’s Lilly Family School of Philanthropy. Ann Fitzgerald is a faculty member at The Fund Raising School at IU’s Lilly Family School of Philanthropy. She is founder of AC Fitzgerald (www.acfitzgerald.com), a consulting firm offering strategic advice and communications to nonprofits. Ann has a master’s degree in philanthropic studies from Indiana University.Part 2: Why should a donor give to your organization? It all starts with your mission statement and your case for support. In this interactive session, learn how to increase your fundraising success by developing a strong mission and a compelling and unique case for support. Then discover the tools and techniques to identify and reach the potential donors to support your work.
- Unplugging from the Newsroom with The News YogiLeslie Rangel, The News Yogi | Yoga for Journalists @thenewsyogi Leslie Rangel is an award winning journalist, yoga and mental wellness expert. In 2020, Leslie launched The News Yogi | Yoga for Journalists, an online yoga and meditation studio teaching journalists mental wellness tools to cope with the stress and trauma of news.Do you feel like you’re constantly riding the news hamster wheel with no space for your mental wellness? Join this chair yoga workshop to help protect journalist mental wellness. Participants will begin with accessible intuitive movement, followed by mini discussion on how news impacts the nervous system with an embodiment practice to learn simple yoga and meditation tools to stay regulated in a 24/hour news cycle.
- Up in the Air – Using Drones to Cover Stories
You don’t have to know how to operate a drone to be thinking about how the technology can enhance your storytelling. Come learn from the best about what you need to know to use drones for news gathering. The panel will feature national experts on using drones to report news stories. We will discuss rules and permitting requirements around drone use, how to become trained in the use of drones, and legal implications of using drone footage. Questions from the audience are welcome.
- Denise Dunbar Denise Dunbar is publisher and executive editor of the Alexandria Times newspaper. She has worked for the Commonwealth of Virginia's department of Health and Human Services, the Central Intelligence Agency and the Charlotte Observer newspaper.
- Greg Agvent Greg Agvent is Senior Director of the CNN Aerial Imagery & Reporting unit, CNN Air. Agvent has led CNN’s unmanned aerial systems program since its initiation in 2013. He has overseen the development of all facets of CNN’s aerial operations, including training, safety management systems, operations, risk management and expansion.
- Charles D. Tobin Charles D. Tobin is a litigator, former journalist and Practice Leader of Ballard Spahr's Media and Entertainment Law Group. He defends the media in libel and privacy lawsuits in state and federal trial and appellate courts. He also advises media clients on the developing laws regulating drone use.
- Perspectives on Journalism’s Future-KeynoteLauryn Bass“Lauryn Bass is a Multimedia Journalist at WTKR News 3 and host of her own podcast “Blooming and Buzzing.” Lauryn is an alumna of Hampton University where she became CEO of the nonprofit, Campus+. She calls Atlanta, GA her home and strives to be one of the industry’s best storytellers. “ Twitter: @laurynbasstv
- Woodward & Bernstein KeynoteBob Woodward and Carl BernsteinOn the 50th anniversary of the Watergate break-in, join legendary reporters Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein at MediaFest22 as they discuss the famous investigative story, how they broke it and its lasting impact on journalism. Few journalists have impacted American history like Woodward and Bernstein. In 1973, they were awarded the Pulitzer Prize for their Watergate coverage at The Washington Post, leading to the resignation of President Richard Nixon and setting new standards for investigative journalism. The pair went on to write two classic bestsellers — “All the President’s Men” and “The Final Days,” chronicling the end of the Nixon presidency. The 50th Anniversary of Water Gate Washington Post Live Event. Speakers and moderators include: Reporters Bob Woodward Carl Bernstein, and Dan Balz, Chief Correspondent, The Washington Post. The Late Show with Stephen Colbert and guests Bob Woodward & Carl Bernstein during Tuesday’s June 14, 2022 show. Photo: Scott Kowalchyk/CBS ©2022 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The 50th Anniversary of Water Gate Washington Post Live Event. Speakers and moderators include: Reporters Bob Woodward Carl Bernstein, and Dan Balz, Chief Correspondent, The Washington Post.
- Fellows Features – Keynote2022 Fellows of the Society honorees Jerry Green, Roland Martin, John Quiñones, Clarissa Ward and Bill WhitakerThe Fellows of the Society is SPJ’s highest honor for extraordinary contribution to the profession of Journalism. The Society of Professional Journalists recognizes Jerry Green, Roland Martin, John Quiñones, Clarissa Ward and Bill Whitaker as the 2022 Fellows of the Society. These honorees will discuss their careers, share their views on journalism and offer their perspectives on what the future holds for the profession. Green, Martin, Quiñones, Ward and Whitaker honored as SPJ Fellows of the Society
- Expanding Local Coverage Through Data
Even small, local news organizations can harness data to drive coverage. Learn how newsrooms in Los Angeles, San Francisco and Raleigh, North Carolina, are using local data to find scoops, increase engagement and even cover individual neighborhoods. This system, developed by computer scientists and journalists at University of Southern California, turns publicly available data into news, while lowering the costs of reporting.
- Gabriel Kahn, professor, USC Annenberg, @gabekahn Gabriel Kahn is a professor of professional practice at USC's Annenberg School of Journalism. He helped developed Crosstown, a system that allows small, local newsrooms to tap into troves of data to deepen coverage and audience engagement. Kahn was previously a foreign correspondent and editor at The Wall Street Journal.
- Ashley Talley, enterprise executive producer, WRAL Ashley Talley is the enterprise executive editor at WRAL in Raleigh, where she has launched numerous digital initiatives and spearheaded the station's push into using local data.
- Resume Reels & Portfolios: Advice from Recruiters
Ready for the next step in your career? Hear from recruiters and former hiring managers as they share tips on how to get your resume, reel and portfolio noticed, and tricks for landing that next job. Learn how to avoid common mistakes in applications, and hear how to ace the interview.
- Heather Lovett Dunn, Managing Editor & Exec. Prod., Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication, ASU Heather Dunn is a professor of practice at the Cronkite School of Journalism overseeing "Cronkite News" on Arizona PBS. She's the former content director at KPNX and has produced at KPHO, KVOA and KTVK. She's worked with journalists in Albania on election coverage and is a graduate of Ole Miss.
- Lesley Van Ness, Dir. of Talent Acquisition, Gray Television Lesley Van Ness is Director of Talent Acquisition for Gray Television. Van Ness spent thirteen years as a broadcast journalist before making the transition to recruiting five years ago. Van Ness was an MMJ, weekend anchor, and evening anchor during her time on-air. She's a graduate of Illinois State University.
- Patrick McCreery, Owner, Glass City Talent Patrick McCreery is the owner of Glass City Talent, a company that will invest in niche broadcast media entities. Patrick is the former President of Meredith Corporation and served various roles in the company over his near 19-year tenure, including VP/General Manager. McCreery graduated from the Ohio State University.
- AP Style SmackdownClaire Regan, president-elect, Society of Professional Journalists Claire Regan is an assistant professor at Wagner College in New York City and a contributing writer for the Staten Island Advance. She is past president of the New York City Deadline Club and president-elect of SPJ national. Ms. Regan completed a yearlong fellowship in journalism ethics at the Poynter Institute and received the Charles O’Malley Award for Excellence in Teaching from the Columbia Scholastic Press Association.Does your staff follow Associated Press Style? Do they even know what it is? Learn why the AP Stylebook is a definitive reference for journalists when it comes to accuracy, sensitivity and consistency. Hear how you can start using it to make your newspaper or yearbook stronger. Or, if you already use it, how to make better use of its guidance.
- Restoring Public Trust in the NewsDon Colacino, “Trusted Sources” Documentary Don Colacino is a writer, producer, and director with a strong interest in civic and social issues. His prior film, “Winner Take All” is streming on Amazon Prime Video and Tubi. His commercial and industrial work includes films for Autism Speaks and two regionally broadcast television spots for Toyota.A new documentary called “Trusted Sources” focuses on solutions to the steady decline of public trust in news. This interactive panel discussion will include preview clips from the film and practical advice for addressing audience skepticism. What should the public know about how you do your job? What issues have you faced in overcoming media mistrust? Join your peers in envisioning the future of journalism.
- Care and Maintenance of an Anti-Racist Newsroom
This session will include an interactive discussion on what it means to have an anti-racist newsroom and why understanding the concept of anti-racism is important to journalists. It will highlight strategies on recruiting, news coverage, community building and outreach that are applicable to all newsrooms of all shapes and sizes regardless of current staff diversity — from college newspapers and websites to professional operations of all varieties.
- Curtis Lawrence, Columbia College Chicago Curtis Lawrence is an associate professor of journalism at Columbia College Chicago. In addition to teaching, he serves as faculty adviser to the Columbia Chronicle. He is also a member of the college’s Antiracism Transformation Team. During his journalism career, he has worked as a reporter at six daily newspapers.
- Suzanne McBride, Dean of Graduate Studies, Columbia College Chicago, @sgmcbride Suzanne McBride is a professor of journalism and dean of the School of Graduate Studies at Columbia College Chicago. She also works as an editor at the Chicago Sun-Times and runs the local news web site AustinTalks.org, which covers Chicago's West Side. She was a Fulbright Scholar in Ireland.
- A Fatal Fire in the Bronx: The Power of Investigative Reporting
A New York Times investigation shows how the main safety system failed in a New York City high-rise, turning it into a deadly chimney of smoke that left 17 people dead. Four journalists on the team explain how they reviewed design documents, inspected the building in person and gathered photos and video to understand how the catastrophe unfolded and concluded that the deaths were preventable. Detailed 3D graphics bring the storytelling to life.
- Claire Regan, president-elect, Society of Professional Journalists Claire Regan is an assistant professor at Wagner College in New York City and a contributing writer for the Staten Island Advance. She is past president of the New York City Deadline Club and president-elect of SPJ national.
- Anjali Singhvi, New York Times Anjali Singhvi is a reporter and graphics editor for The New York Times. She covers a variety of topics and her work primarily focuses on investigative visual journalism. She is a trained architect and holds a master’s degree in Urban Planning/Urban Analytics from Columbia University. Anjali joined The Times in 2016.
- Evan Grothjan, New York Times Evan Grothjan has filmed virtual reality projects for The New York Times on five continents, from the skies of Rio de Janeiro to the ice of Antarctica. As part of a team of Times journalists, he was recognized as a 2015 Pulitzer Prize finalist for work surrounding the Paris terror attacks. Before The Times, he was a freelance cameraman.
- James Glanz New York Times
- Weiyi Cai, New York Times Weiyi Cai is a graphics and multimedia editor at The New York Times. She previously worked as a data visualization developer for Thomson Reuters and as a graphic editor and designer at The Washington Post. She joined The Times in 2019.
- Presenting Journalism’s Story to Congress
Journalists are used to covering Congress. But what about when they want to lobby members for measures that make government actions more transparent, or create protections for journalists like a shield law? We’ll learn about the effectiveness of past efforts and how to best go about advancing journalism’s interests in our nation’s capital.
- Al Cross, Director, Institute for Rural Journalism and Community Issues, University of Kentucky Al is a former chief political writer for the Louisville Courier-Journal. He was inducted into the Kentucky Journalism Hall of Fame in 2010. He's also a past national president of SPJ, and a member of the SPJ Foundation Board of Directors.
- Congressman John Yarmuth Democratic Congressman John Yarmuth is in his 8th term representing Kentucky's Third Congressional District. He has chaired the House Budget Committee since 2019. Congressman Yarmuth is also a member of SPJ
- On the Beat: Covering the Courts
The court beat involves criminal, civil, family and juvenile court cases. There are also federal courts, including immigration. The journalists on this panel will share tips on covering the most newsworthy trials and finding stories at the courthouse that you may not know are happening. Learn how to build trust and find sources among judges, defense attorneys, prosecutors, public defenders and more. Find out the basics you need to know to cover a trial before it gets started, including plea bargains and motions to throw out a case.
- Daniela Ibarra, Crime & courts MMJ, @DanielaIbarraTV, KTUL-TV Daniela Ibarra is a MMJ/reporter at KTUL-TV in Tulsa, Oklahoma, focusing on courts and crime. Her reporting on a loophole in the state’s protective order statute led to a change in law. She's currently an At-Large Director for SPJ. Ibarra graduated from the University of North Texas.
- Jane Harper Jane Harper has covered state & federal courts for The Virginian-Pilot since 2015. She discovered her passion for working the courts beat in the late 1980s, doing so for newspapers in Texas, Maryland and Virginia. Harper was named Outstanding Journalist of the Year for 2021 by the Virginia Press Association.
- Erica Hernandez, Digital Journalist/Courthouse Reporter, @erica_KSAT, KSAT-TV Erica Hernandez is an Emmy award-winning journalist covering courts and the criminal justice system for KSAT in San Antonio. Hernandez has more than 10 years of experience in the broadcast news business. She started her career in Laredo, Texas, as a reporter/producer covering courts in Webb County.
- Uncover and Enhance Your News Stories with Census Bureau Data
Equipped with data from the 2020 Census and American Community Survey, journalists can augment and enrich their reporting on a variety of social topics. In this presentation, you will learn the fundamentals of both the 2020 Census and ACS, as well as how to access data from each. Presenters will also demonstrate how to customize data to meet your needs. They’ll also share updates and provide resources relevant for journalists.
- Ryan Ricciardi, Statistician (Data Scientist), U.S. Census Bureau Ryan Ricciardi is a Statistician who works on American Community Survey (ACS) at the U.S. Census Bureau. In his role, Ryan helps data users access and interpret ACS data. He also conducts webinars and creates resources for ACS data users.
- Maria Valdisera Maria Valdisera is a Program Analyst for the U.S. Census Bureau and is excited to be demonstrating our data dissemination tool, data.census.gov! Since joining the Census Bureau in 2021, Maria has also created video tutorials and facilitates virtual workshops on accessing Census data through data.census.gov.
- Headless Body in a Topless Bar: Headline Writing 101Claire Regan, president-elect, Society of Professional Journalists Claire Regan is an assistant professor at Wagner College in New York City and a contributing writer for the Staten Island Advance. She is past president of the New York City Deadline Club and president-elect of SPJ national. Ms. Regan completed a yearlong fellowship in journalism ethics at the Poynter Institute and received the Charles O’Malley Award for Excellence in Teaching from the Columbia Scholastic Press Association.Every story deserves a strong headline, but it takes some journalists a whole career to become good at writing one. You can do it in just 50 minutes thanks to this session, which will offer three simple steps to help you master this critical skill.
- Journalist Safety Update 2022Chris Post, Director, @ChrisMPost, International Media Support Group Chris Post is an award winning photojournalist, and a media safety educator, with a background of over 25 years in emergency services. Chris worked in positions ranging from Captain of the fire department at McMurdo Station in Antarctica, to EMT at a regional level, to disaster response with FEMA.Newsgathering is dangerous and safety considerations are no longer just for journalists going off to war. Domestic journalists face hazards every day on the streets of their own communities. From door-knocks, crime, extreme weather, civil unrest and covering politics, the landscape has changed, and we need to be prepared. Talk about current threats, future trends and practical solutions including safety education, personal protective equipment selection and event or incident planning.
- Freelancing 201: It’s Been Awhile — How Do I Expand My Freelance Business?
Journalists who have freelanced for a while soon become ready for something newer, bigger and better. This session will move colleagues beyond the Freelancing 101 basics of launching a freelance journalism business by providing tips for finding new, more and better-paying clients or markets; negotiating higher fees; regularly increasing rates; working in new fields, topics and media that can provide more variety in topics or clients, as well as higher income; using networking, social media and other techniques to expand their visibility; and learning new skills to offer beyond writing/reporting, such as editing, podcasting, teaching, coaching, public speaking and more.
- Ruth E. Thaler-Carter, Freelance Writer/Editor, @WriterRuth, I can write about anything® and Communication Central; SPJ Freelance Community Ruth Thaler-Carter started as a writer and added more services at higher rates. She leads the SPJ Freelance Community’s “how to” guide; wrote/published “Get Paid to Write! Getting Started as a Freelance Writer”; co-authored the EFA's “Freelancing 101...” and “Résumés for Freelancers...”; and created the “Be a Better Freelancer”® conference.
- Kathy Gambrell, Owner, Content Essentials and Intensity Media Group Journalist, editor and digital content strategist Kathy Gambrell is the founder of Content Essentials, a studio providing digital storytelling, e-mail marketing, digital content, multi-media (podcast and video production, brand photography); social media; data analytics; user research and more. She owns the Intensity Media Group, which develops “newsletters that spark conversation.”
- Rebecca Aguilar, President, SPJ SPJ President Rebecca Aguilar is a television commentator, news consultant, media watchdog, social media trainer and freelance reporter. She founded Latinas in Journalism and chaired the SPJ’s Diversity & Inclusion Committee. Freelance gigs include reporting for the Texas Metro News; White Rock Lake Weekly; and TV, radio and digital outlets.
- Disinformation and the Decline of Democracy: Practical Things Journalists Can Do
The increasing prevalence of disinformation and misinformation are negatively impacting democratic processes, as voter education declines, civic distrust deepens and partisan divides grow. Against this landscape, journalists have tools at their disposal to fight against disinformation and to mitigate misinformation. Panelists will review the extent of the disinformation problem, provide examples of disinformation’s impacts on democratic processes and offer recommendations for what journalists can do to strengthen the democracy on which the foundation of a free press depends.
- Bey-Ling Sha, Dean, College of Communication, California State University, Fullerton; @DrSha At Cal State Fullerton, Bey-Ling Sha, Ph.D., APR, Fellow PRSA (she/her) is Dean of the College of Communications, the only academic communications college in the 23-campus system of the California State University. The mission of the College of Communications is to prepare communicators to advance democratic society.
- Mariana De Maio, Assistant Professor, Lehigh University Originally from Argentina, Dr. De Maio has worked as a reporter and editor in radio, television, print, and online news outlets. She started a weekly Spanish publication for Gannett in the heart of South Jersey to serve the regional Hispanic community and currently researches disinformation in Spanish-language media.
- Dave Scholz, Executive Vice President, Leger; @dave_scholz Based in Toronto, Dave Scholz has more than 25 years' experience in public opinion and marketing research. He serves of the board of trustees of the Institute for Public Relations, which since 2000 has produced an annual report on Disinformation in Society. https://instituteforpr.org/2022-disinformation-report/
- Get the Scoop: How to Win Over Sources and Break News on Your Beat
How do you get people to tell you what’s really going on behind the scenes — thestuff that elected officials, CEOs and others in power don’t want you to know? It’s all about finding the right sources, making the connection and getting them to talk — and to keep talking. This session will offer practical tips and real-world guidance that will help you break news, scoop the competition and become a newsroom standout.
- Rebecca Baker, Editor at Large, @msbakerrebecca Rebecca Baker, a former SPJ president, is an editor for the Bloomberg Industry Group. She has managed reporters covering courts, law, government, and the environment. She has spent the first half of her career as a beat reporter for newspapers in Ohio, Connecticut, New York, and New Jersey.
- Stephen Lee, reporter, @sklee_ca Stephen Lee covers environment for the Bloomberg Industry Group and routinely scoops the competition on news about the Environmental Protection Agency. His previous beats have included Silicon Valley, the telecom industry, and the Labor Department. His work has appeared in numerous publications including the Washington Post.
- Madison Alder, reporter, @madialder Madison Alder covers the judiciary for the Bloomberg Industry Group where she routinely breaks news on legislation and and judicial nominations, among other topics. She previously covered health policy and employee benefits issues and is a graduate of the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism at Arizona State University.
- Google Tools Training — Detecting DisinformationFrank Bi, Director of Tools & Technology, @frankbi, Star Tribune Frank Bi is journalist, technologist, educator and nonprofit leader passionate about media and technology. He is the Director of Tools & Technology at the Star Tribune. Frank is also the president of the New York chapter of the Asian American Journalists Association. He lives in Minnesota and New York City.In a sea of information, getting the right information is critical to our jobs as journalists. But how do we find what we need effectively and efficiently? How do we also detect and verify that information? What tools, strategies and techniques help us ensure the accuracy of our work? This session will look to answer these questions and more, with priority on workflows and examples that will help us detect disinformation.
- Keeping News Alive in Small Town America
Revenue declines, social media competition and staffing shortages are all helping create news deserts across America. That’s never truer than in small towns. This session will explore innovative ways companies, nonprofits, consortiums, start-ups and families are developing a variety of local news ecosystems at a time when we are at a democratic crossroads and America needs an independent press more than ever.
- Kevin Z Smith Kevin Z. Smith is the executive director of the Kiplinger Program in Public Affairs Journalism at Ohio University. He directs Kiplinger's global education program focusing on preserving and advancing public affairs reporting. He is a former SPJ national president, board and foundation member with 43 years in SPJ.
- Andrew Alexander Former Washington Post ombudsman Andrew Alexander is an award-winning journalist who has been a reporter, editor and bureau chief during a five-decade careers. He is the Visiting Professional at the Ohio University Scripps College of Communication. He chairs Foothills Forum, an innovative and thriving nonprofit producing award-winning, local, in-depth journalism.
- Steve Waldman Steven Waldman is president and co-founder of Report for America, a national service program that places emerging journalists into local newsrooms. He was Senior Advisor to the Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission, serving out of the Office of Strategic Planning. He authored the report "Information Needs of Communities".
- War Reporting 101: Getting the Story While Getting It Right
Who do you trust in a war zone? This session reveals innovative methods for finding the truth from both journalists and the US military. Included: a live update from within Ukraine and info on proper body armor, advice on analyzing propaganda and some surprising “now it can be told” success – and failure – stories.
- Bob Schapiro Bob Schapiro has served as a war correspondent in Nicaragua, El Salvador, Lebanon, Ethiopia, China and Afghanistan, as well as producing newscasts for WCBS and WNBC. As an officer of NJ-SPJ, he is currently helping supply protective gear to reporters in Ukraine. He has worked for the US government, analyzing disinformation.
- CAPT Todd Veazie / US Navy SEALS CAPT Todd Veazie is a former commander of SEAL Team SEVEN. For 30 years he was deployed globally in Naval Special Warfare Teams. At the National Counterterrorism Center, he evaluated the safety and rescue of journalists covering war and terrorism. He has served in naval public information, which is rare for a combat officer.
- Natalie Gryvnyak / Ukrainian Journalist Natalie Gryvnyak operates a wartime network of journalists in Ukraine and Eastern Europe. In addition to producing thrice-daily reports, she instructs foreign journalists on news analysis, safety consultations and dealing with disinformation. In the US, Ms. Gryvnyak has been published in the Wall Street Journal, Washington Post and elsewhere.
- Covering Climate Change: What Journalists Need to Know
Climate change is the story of our era, touching every beat in journalism. It’s an environmental story, a justice story, political story, a business story — it’s even a sports story. Both local and global, climate change is the story of the century. Learn from some of the nation’s leading environmental reporters about the ins and outs of how to provide solid, accurate and creative coverage about climate change from different angles.
- Bobby Magill Bobby Magill covers water, public lands and climate change for Bloomberg Law in Washington, D.C. He covered the last three United Nations climate change conferences for Bloomberg. He was previously an energy reporter for Climate Central and reported for various newspapers in Colorado and New Mexico.
- Marianne Lavelle Marianne Lavelle is a reporter for Inside Climate News. She has covered environment, science, law, and business in Washington, D.C. for more than two decades. Lavelle previously spent four years as online energy news editor and writer at National Geographic.
- Emily Holden Emily Holden is editor-in-chief of Floodlight, a nonprofit investigative climate newsroom that collaborates with local and national outlets. Before founding Floodlight in early 2021, Emily was a D.C.-based environment reporter for about a decade, including at the Guardian, Politico, E&E News and CQ Roll Call.
- Justin Worland Justin Worland is a Washington D.C.-based senior correspondent for TIME covering climate change and the intersection of policy, politics and society.
- Safety in the Field: Physical and Digital ConcernsAlison Macrina, Library Freedom Project Alison Macrina is the founder and director of Library Freedom Project and has been a volunteer with The Tor Project since 2014. She works with librarians to help make privacy mainstream in local communities, focusing on how the impacts of surveillance are felt the most along racial and economic lines.Safety is of the utmost importance for journalists, both physically and digitally. Learn how to prepare for an assignment, gain first-hand knowledge of how to prepare risk assessments and how to be digitally secure and protect yourself as a journalist. “
- Moving Mediums: Transitioning from Print to Broadcast or Delving Into New Beats
Making a seismic change can feel daunting, but this discussion with journalists who have successfully navigated a big switch — in a variety of ways and for a variety of reasons — will inspire you to reach for new heights. Are you an ink-stained wretch curious about multimedia? Photojournalist longing to write? Secretly dreaming of anchoring a morning show? Come learn about the rewarding detours others have taken and connect with colleagues who are also on the cusp of professional breakthroughs.
- Bijan C. Bayne Bijan C. Bayne is a writer, producer and cultural critic with extensive credits in television and film, including television pilots, reality series and documentaries. Bayne’s writing spans from ESPN to the book "Race In American Film" to advertising, and he consults for television and film productions, marketing agencies and others.
- Stacie Overton Johnson Stacie Overton Johnson is the vice chair of SPJ’s Freelance Community. She has freelanced for HGTV, E! Entertainment, network news outlets, and more. She was the food editor at The National, a daily in Abu Dhabi from 2013 - 2017. She lives in New York, writing for the show Goodtaste.
- SPJ Bylaws Voting Preparation: Get Your Questions AnsweredAlex Tarquinio, Bylaws Chair, Society of Professional JournalistsJoin members of the SPJ Bylaws Committee to learn more about the proposed bylaws amendments. Discuss the proposed changes pertaining to delegate meetings at convention and revisions to implement the Delegate Analysis Task Force’s recommendation to replace the current delegate system with an electronic ballot open to all members. Get your questions answered before delegates vote on these amendments at Saturday’s closing business meeting.
- Covering Mass Shootings
Journalists who have covered these tragic assignments give their best advice on how to gather facts during a very emotional time, how to work with law enforcement even when they will not provide information, and strategies for building trust in a devastated community. Also included: the importance of self-care when covering traumatic situations.
- Hilary Powell, @mshilary, Associated Press Hilary Powell is an AP award-winning journalist. She is the first Videojournalist hired to serve the Associated Press D.C bureau. Before that, she reported for Spectrum News, WSBT, and PBS Chicago. She is also a member of the Indy SPJ Pro Board.
- John Quiñones, @JohnQABC, ABC News John Quiñones is a multiple award-winning ABC News correspondent who reports for “20/20,” and “Good Morning America.” He joined ABC News in 1982 and reports extensively for all programs and platforms and served as anchor of “What Would You Do?” He is a 2022 SPJ Fellows of the Society inductee.
- Leigh Waldman, @LeighWaldman, KSAT-TV, San Antonio, TX Leigh Waldman is a reporter at KSAT 12 in San Antonio, Texas. She has covered several national stories throughout her career, including the mass shootings at the Pulse Nightclub, Sutherland Springs, and Uvalde, TX. Today she continues to cover the Uvalde investigation.
- Mitch Blacher, Investigative Journalist, WJLANews Mitch Blacher is a national award-winning investigative reporter. He joined the 7News I-team in Washington DC in November 2021. Blacher has reported across North America and Europe. His work has led to criminal indictments, lifesaving regulatory changes, and new laws. He serves on the SPJ Professional Standards & Ethics Committee.
- Defending Democracy: What Journalists Got Wrong About Jan. 6 and How to Fix It
Decades of mass media research show definitively that news media shape people’s perceptions of social reality. For this reason, journalists have a heavy responsibility and moral obligation to ensure how they report current events helps people to understand what is really happening, not just about one particular incident, but also as part of a broader trending context. This session will address how journalists have shaped public understanding of democracy and existential threats to it — as well as ways in which news media can better defend democracy, which itself is foundational to the existence of a free press.
- Bey-Ling Sha, Dean, College of communications, California State University, Fullerton; @DrSha At Cal State Fullerton, Bey-Ling Sha, Ph.D., APR, Fellow PRSA (she/her) serves as Dean of the College of Communications, the only academic communications college in the 23-campus system of the California State University. The College of Communications' mission is to prepare communicators to advance democratic society.
- Dr. Deborah Turner, President, League of Women Voters Dr. Deborah Turner is president of the League of Women Voters, a national non-partisan, non-sectarian, non-profit organization dedicated to encouraging the informed and active participation of citizens in government, increasing public understanding of major policy issues, and influencing public policy through education and advocacy.
- Covering Politics & The White House in 2022
As one of the most consequential midterms in years approaches, join some of the nation’s top political journalists in a wide-ranging discussion on political reporting in Washington and beyond. Learn how they stay on top of stories and get political sources to talk. And in case you’re interested in scoring a White House beat, they’ve got tips for that, too.
- Fin Gomez @FinnyGo Fin Gomez was promoted to political director at CBS News in February 2022. The first Latino to hold that position. He oversees daily network political coverage. As White House producer, Gómez covered four presidential campaigns, three administrations and breaking news
- Jim Acosta @Acosta Jim Acosta is a CNN anchor for weekend programming and the network's chief domestic correspondent, based in Washington, D.C. Previously, Acosta served as CNN's chief White House correspondent, where he covered the Trump administration and the Obama administration from the White House and around the world.
- Pauly Denetclaw @pdineclah Pauly Denetclaw is an award-winning reporter in Washington, D.C. She's worked for the Navajo Times and Texas Observer covering Indigenous communities. She is a board member of the Native American Journalists Association. Denetclaw is a citizen of the Navajo Nation, is Haltsooí (Meadow People) born for Kinyaa’áanii (Towering House People).
- The Art of Obituary WritingClaire Regan, president-elect, Society of Professional Journalists Claire Regan is an assistant professor at Wagner College in New York City and a contributing writer for the Staten Island Advance. She is past president of the New York City Deadline Club and president-elect of SPJ national. Ms. Regan completed a yearlong fellowship in journalism ethics at the Poynter Institute and received the Charles O’Malley Award for Excellence in Teaching from the Columbia Scholastic Press Association.It’s not easy to write a profile when your main source is unavailable. That is the challenge, simply put, of crafting a news obituary. Panelists will reveal how their exceptional interviewing and investigative reporting skills help them piece together details about the deceased and how a successful obit captures more life than death.
- SPJ’s Code of Ethics: Refreshed and New Resources for Your Toolkit
You know the importance of SPJ’s Code of Ethics, but are you building your toolkit for applied ethics? In this session, you’ll get a refresher on the Code and its practical application. Gain valuable resources and an introduction to SPJ volunteers and staff committed to advancing ethics in journalism. The Code shouldn’t rest passively in your office or classroom; it should be regularly examined, debated and applied. Familiarity with the Code can have a lasting impact. Research shows students exposed to the Code in college are better prepared to navigate ethical issues.”
- Duane Pohlman Duane Pohlman is a national investigative reporter for Sinclair Broadcast Group’s “Spotlight on America,” chief investigative reporter for WKRC-TV in Cincinnati and chair of SPJ’s Professional Standards and Ethics Committee. Pohlman has received more than 300 journalism honors, including dozens of Emmys.
- Fred Brown Fred Brown is a former president of the Society of Professional Journalists and an active member of its Professional Standards and Ethics Committee. He helped write the two most recent versions of the Code. Brown retired from The Denver Post and now teaches media ethics at the University of Denver.
- Delece Smith-Barrow Delece Smith-Barrow is education editor at Politico and teaches media ethics at Georgetown University. Previously, she was a senior editor for higher education at The Hechinger Report and a Knight-Wallace Fellow at the University of Michigan. She also was a producer, writer and editor at The Washington Post.
- Karyn Campbell, Ph.D. Karyn Campbell, Ph.D., is assistant professor of mass communication and adviser to The Vision magazine at North Greenville University. Campbell was lead researcher of a study published last year that found college journalists familiar with the SPJ Code of Ethics were more likely to recognize unethical behavior.
- Google Tools Training – PinpointFrank Bi, Director of Tools & Technology, @frankbi, Star Tribune Frank Bi is journalist, technologist, educator and nonprofit leader passionate about media and technology. He is the Director of Tools & Technology at the Star Tribune. Frank is also the president of the New York chapter of the Asian American Journalists Association. He lives in Minnesota and New York City.Pinpoint gives you the power to quickly explore and analyze large collections of documents. Have interviews you need to transcribe? Pinpoint will do that work for you. What about PDFs that need to be cross-referenced with those transcribed interviews? Pinpoint will do that for you too. Pinpoint is a tool that will not only save you time and effort but will also power your investigations.
- Championing All Journalists: Amplifying New and Diverse Voices
As news organizations put more focus on building welcoming workplaces that reflect the rich diversity of the nation, all employees should understand the value of these efforts, what success looks like and the role they can play. In this session, panelists give practical examples of what news organizations can do to diversify their staffs and make their newsrooms more inclusive, as well as what journalists can do to diversity coverage. You’ll also learn about SPJ resources to help you address race and gender issues with sensitivity, nuance and accuracy while also finding diverse expert sources to improve your stories.
- Rod Hicks, Director of Ethics and Diversity, Society of Professional Journalists, @rodhicks Rod Hicks is director of ethics and diversity at the Society of Professional Journalists, where he’s an advocate for high journalistic standards and stories inclusive of the full community. Hicks previously was an editor for The Associated Press and has held editing positions at several newspapers across the country.
- Krissah Thompson, Managing Editor of Diversity and Inclusion, @Krissah30 Krissah Thompson’s first job at The Washington Post was intern. Now she’s managing editor of diversity and inclusion, the first Black woman there to hold the managing editor title. At The Post, Thompson also has served as a business reporter, covered presidential campaigns and written about civil rights and race.
- Evelyn Hsu, Co-executive Director, Maynard Institute for Journalism Education, @HsuEvelyn Longtime diversity advocate Evelyn Hsu is co-executive director of the Maynard Institute for Journalism Education and a graduate of its Summer Program for Minority Journalists early in her career. Hsu, a former reporter at the San Francisco Chronicle and Washington Post, is past president of the Asian American Journalists Association.
- Myriam Márquez, executive director, News Leaders Association, @MyriamMarquez Myriam Márquez is executive director of the News Leaders Association, which conducts leadership training and attempts to track newsroom diversity through a survey of news outlets. Márquez previously was executive editor of el Nuevo Herald and the first woman and Hispanic to serve as opinion editor at the Miami Herald.
- Covering Press Freedom as News
Press freedom is vital to a functioning society. News organizations should approach this topic in the same way they report on economics, politics and sports. This session will focus on how some news organizations look at press freedom as a beat. It will also include a discussion on how local reporters can do the same.
- Dan Kubiske Dan Kubiske is the co-chair of the SPJ International Community. He is a freelance journalist who has worked in Mexico, Jamaica, Taiwan, China, Hong Kong, Dominican Republic, Brazil and Honduras. He is also an active member of the Washington, DC, Professional SPJ, currently serving as its treasurer.
- Jessica Jerreat Currently the VOA Press Freedom Editor. Jerreat has worked for press freedom organizations and international news outlets such as the Committee to Protect Journalists and The Times of London. Prior to joining VOA, Jerreat was senior editor at CPJ, where she edited of global censorship and attacks on the press.
- SPJ Communications: Supporting Advocacy, Community and Connections
Do you know what the SPJ communications team does to proactively promote journalism advocacy? Do you know the regular and special communications the team executes? Learn what the team does to advance SPJ’s role in the profession and democracy. Gain an understanding of the various ways the team works on your behalf and how you can help spread SPJ’s message on the importance of journalism and a free press.
- Zoë Berg, SPJ Zoë is the communication specialist & Quill assistant editor for SPJ. She graduated from the University of Indianapolis with a bachelor’s degree in communication with concentrations in journalism & public relations. She previously worked on the campus newspaper & for the student-run public relations firm.
- Michelle Lagos, SPJ Michelle is the communications coordinator for SPJ. She graduated from UC Davis with a bachelor's degree in English & is pursuing her MBA at Paul Merage School of Business at UC Irvine. She developed a passion for communications & marketing through her experiences working on expanding a nonprofit.
- Reimagining Immigration: Lessons from North Carolina Local News
The country’s demographics are shifting, and how journalists cover the growth of local immigrant communities could influence audiences ahead of the 2024 presidential election. In the swing state of North Carolina, local journalism is failing to reflect this diversity, according to a new study by Define American, a nonpartisan organization. But there are promising exceptions. Collaborations between Spanish and English outlets — across TV, public radio and digital — reimagine immigration coverage to engage new audiences. Listen to these leaders and take home a toolkit on covering immigrant communities.
- Liz Robbins, Director, Journalism Partnerships at Define American @bylizrobbins Liz Robbins was a staff reporter for The New York Times for 19 years, covering sports and then immigration. She taught journalism at Columbia University before joining Define American in 2021. She mentors reporters, gives workshops, and co-authored this report on local immigration journalism in North Carolina.
- Victoria Bouloubasis, North Carolina immigration reporter and filmmaker, @thisfeedsme Victoria Bouloubasis covered the intersection of environmental issues and economic mobility in Latinx, immigrant, and refugee communities in North Carolina for Southerly and Enlace Latino NC. She reported and co-authored Define American's study on immigration journalism in the state.
- Sarah Mobley Smith, Senior Editor for Race and Equity, WFAE Sarah Mobley Smith is the senior editor of WFAE Charlotte's Race & Equity team. She is the liaison for WFAE's collaboration with La Noticia in Charlotte. Smith started her radio career while attending Morgan State University as a news anchor/talk show board operator at NPR member station WEAA-FM.
- Daniel Viotto, News Anchor, Managing Editor, Telemundo Charlotte Daniel Viotto is the managing editor of Telemundo Charlotte and lead anchor for the evening Spanish-language newscasts. Born in Argentina, Viotto worked as an anchor at CNN en Español and at Telemundo KVEA Channel 52 in Los Angeles.
- How College Students Can Find the Best Internships and Land Their First Job
Are you stressed out while looking for an internship or your first job? Trust us, we’ve all been there. In this session, you will get some tips and tricks on how to make yourself stand out on your application and interview, have a killer resume and make connections to get the right opportunity.
- Daniela Ibarra, MMJ/Reporter @DanielaIbarraTV, KTUL Daniela Ibarra is a multimedia journalist at KTUL-TV in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Her reporting led to a change in law. She previously worked at KTXS in Abilene, TX. She's currently an At-Large Director for SPJ. Ibarra graduated from the University of North Texas, where she earned her M.A. and a B.A.
- Debra Alfarone, Correspondent @DebraAlfarone, CBS News Debra Alfarone is a Murrow and Emmy award-winning network TV Correspondent who informs the nation from the White House and U.S Capitol for CBS News. And, she’s a former high school dropout. Her mission is to empower and inspire people to use their voices powerfully.
- Isabel Sánchez, MMJ/Reporter @isasanchezt62, Telemundo62/NBC Philadelphia Isabel Sánchez is a bilingual MMJ for Telemundo62 and NBC 10 in Philadelphia. She earned her master’s degree from Syracuse University. Isabel was born and raised in Maracaibo, Venezuela. She moved to the United States in 2015 due to the difficult sociopolitical situation happening in her home country.
- Annick Joseph, MMJ at WWAY Annick Joseph is a journalist with more than a decade of experience. She’s currently a multimedia journalist at WWAY in North Carolina. Joseph has worked almost every position in the newsroom, including working the assignment desk and being a video coordinator. Joseph held several internships, turning one into a job.
- Pitching Your Story as a DocumentaryBrian CollisterThe goal of the session is to teach journalists how to pitch their stories as documentaries to the heads of studios. There is massive demand in the documentary market for content created by journalists and this provides a new market for their work.
- Nonprofit News to the Rescue?Stephenie Overman, moderator, freelance journalist Overman writes extensively about labor and employment issues and contributes frequently to County News and Virginia Business magazine. She has written for Fortune, Forbes, Salon, HR Magazine and the Los Angeles Business Journal. She is SPJ Region 2 Coordinator.While the old for-profit newspaper business model stumbles, the number of nonprofit news organizations is soaring. Are these nonprofits successfully filling the gap in local and regional coverage? How good of a job are they doing in reaching under-represented communities? How are they different from their for-profit colleagues? How do journalists prepare themselves to work in this environment?
- How to Bring Diversity and Inclusion to Disability Coverage
Journalists are more focused on diversity, with people of color, women and members of the LGBT community more visible than ever in news reports. But coverage of people with disabilities and the issues that affect them has improved at a slower pace. Well-meaning journalists like to highlight people with disabilities in stories of inspiration and heroics. Fewer seek opportunities to include them as experts on a wide range of topics unrelated to disability issues. This session will explore ways to make disability coverage more inclusive and intentional, and provide resources on appropriate language and avoiding stereotypes.
- Jennifer LaFleur, Senior Editor, Center for Public Integrity, @j_la28 Investigative journalist Jennifer LaFleur is senior editor at the Center for Public Integrity and teaches data journalism at American University. She also serves on the advisory board for the National Center for Disability and Journalism. LaFleur’s disability reporting in St. Louis prompted a federal investigation of the transit system.
- Ola Ojewumi, author and activist, @Olas_Truth Ola Ojewumi is an author, political commentator and activist, particularly for disability rights. While in college, she founded two nonprofits, including one that assists children awaiting organ transplants. Ojewumi, who's Black and has a disability, says she’s experienced unequal treatment not only by people, “but also by laws and institutions.”
- Beth Haller, Ph.D., professor emerita, Towson University, @Mediadisdat Beth Haller, Ph.D. is professor emerita in the Department of Mass Communication at Towson University in Maryland and a former print journalist. She is co-editor of The Routledge Companion to Disability and Media and author of Representing Disability in an Ableist World: Essays on Mass Media.
- Eric Garcia, Washington correspondent, The Independent, @EricMGarcia Eric Garcia is senior Washington correspondent for The Independent and an MSNBC columnist. He’s the author of We’re Not Broken: Changing the Autism Conversation, a book he calls “a message from autistic people to their parents, friends, teachers, coworkers and doctors showing what life is like on the spectrum.”
- Grow Your SPJ Chapter MembershipGreg Patterson - Alpha Kappa Psi / RPI Greg Patterson is an Alpha Kappa Psi fraternity member and the former Vice President of Membership Development. In this role, Greg developed the recruitment and new member education program. He's also a Consultant Resource Development Manager for RPI, a Baltimore-based consulting firm where he works in the finance practice.Recruiting new members is as much an art as it is a science. In this session, learn best practices and innovative ideas to help college chapters grow their numbers. Attendees will identify strategies they can employ in their local organization to continuously recruit new members and provide valuable chapter programming.
- 50+ Public Records to Ask for NowTodd Wallack, Deputy Managing Editor at WBUR Radio in Boston, @twallack Todd Wallack is deputy managing editor of WBUR Radio in Boston. He previously spent eight years as an investigative reporter and data journalist on the Boston Globe's Spotlight team. Wallack is a former Nieman fellow and has won national awards for his articles on public records.In this fast-paced session, you’ll get tons of ideas for important and often overlooked public records to request from all levels of government. Hear about dozens of examples of stories newsrooms across the country produced using public records. The session is ideal for both beginners and more experienced journalists.
- Threats to Journalists in Mexico and Why It Matters
Mexico is one of the most dangerous places in the world for journalists. Brave media workers in Mexico have pushed forward despite threats to their lives and families. As in the United States, when local journalism fails, government corruption and malfeasance increases and the very structure of a democratic society collapses, along with press freedom. The panelists will explore how the threats from government and criminal elements are weakening the Mexican democracy and how that failure can affect the safety of journalists everywhere.
- Dan Kubiske Dan Kubiske is the co-chair of the SPJ International Community. He is a freelance journalist who has worked in Mexico, Jamaica, Taiwan, China, Hong Kong, Dominican Republic, Brazil and Honduras. He is also an active member of the Washington, DC, Professional SPJ, currently serving as its treasurer.
- Katherine Corcoran Former Associated Press journalist and bureau chief who worked in Mexico and Latin America for nine years. She is the author of the upcoming book In the Mouth of the Wolf: A Murder, a Coverup and the True Cost of Silencing the Press.
- Cristina Caicedo Smit She covers crime, a particularly risky beat for journalists in Mexico. She produced two animated reports on threats to Mexican journalists for Voice of America Press Freedom website. She is a graduate of the Universidad del Norte Barranquilla in Colombia, and worked for Telemundo before joining Voice of America
- Vicente Calderon He is a well-respected journalist in Tijuana who founded Tijuana Press, an independent news site https://tijuanapress.com/. He has worked with major US news organizations -- at great risk to himself -- to tell the story of violence against society in Mexico
- Hot Topics in Media Law
In today’s litigious culture, journalists face a range of risks including defamation, invasion of privacy and numerous other legal challenges. This session will focus on the legal and First Amendment issues confronting journalists. Hosted by Roy Gutterman, professor and director of the Tully Center for Free Speech at Syracuse University, the discussion will include Israel Balderas, Elon University/SPJ Legal Defense Fund chairman and Alia Smith, whose practice with Ballard Spahr in Washington, D.C., focuses on defending publishers and broadcasters against claims of defamation.
- Roy Gutterman, Professor/Director, Tully Center for Free Speech, Syracuse University Roy Gutterman, professor/director of the Tully Center for Free Speech at Syracuse University. He teaches communications law and writes and speaks on these issues. He is a former newspaper reporter for the Cleveland Plain Dealer and a former lawyer. He sits on SPJ LDF Committee and the SPJ FOIA Committee.
- Alia Smith, Ballard Spahr Alia L. Smith’s defends publishers and broadcasters against claims of defamation and other newsgathering torts, and representing them in litigation over access, the Freedom Of Information Act, subpoenas and copyrights. She provides prepublication advice to a number of the firm’s clients, from national publications, to regional broadcasters, to start-up websites.
- Israel Balderas Israel Balderas is an Emmy® award-winning journalist and educator. As an assistant professor at Elon University, his teaching and research agenda focuses on First Amendment law and media ethics. As chair of the Legal Defense Fund Committee, Balderas oversees the organization's various court filings related to protecting the First Amendment.
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