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Nominations Committee Chair

Sonny Albarado
Projects Editor
Arkansas Democrat-Gazette
121 E. Capitol Ave.
Little Rock, Ark. 72201
Bio (click to expand) Sonny Albarado is projects editor at the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, a statewide, family-owned daily newspaper based in Little Rock. As projects editor, he supervises a staff of two reporters and assists other editors and reporters in long-term investigative and explanatory journalism.

Albarado has worked as a journalist since 1970, when he became editor of his college newspaper. His first professional newspaper job began in December 1972 in Houma, La. Except for an 18-month period when he helped a couple of friends start a monthly trade magazine in New Orleans, he has worked in newspapers all of his professional life.

He doesn’t count the year he was a part-time disc jockey as work.

He has been an SPJ member since March 1979, joining in hopes of starting a chapter in the rural area he covered for the daily paper in Baton Rouge, La. Baton Rouge had an active press club but no SPJ chapter. He was president of the press club in 1988-89 and received the local PRSA chapter’s “Communicator of the Year” award in 1988.

After moving to Memphis in 1989, he joined the Mid-South Pro SPJ Chapter. He became chapter president in 1992 and remained president throughout most of the 1990s. He also served as secretary-treasurer and chairman of the chapter’s contest committee in the late ’90s and early 2000s.

Albarado became SPJ Region 12 director at the 2006 convention. As regional director, he also became co-director with Region 3’s director of the annual Green Eyeshade Awards program, which recognizes excellence among journalists in 11 southeastern states.

Home > SPJ Election Central > Run for Office

Call for Candidates

Election Central
Be more than a member.
Be a leader.

Open positions | Special Qualifications | Guidelines | How to Run | Responsibilities

SPJ Election Central

SPJ members will elect members of the national board of directors during the Excellence in Journalism 2014 conference, Sept. 4-6 in Nashville.

Follow this link to find out more information about how you can participate in this election as a voting SPJ member.

Board members help define the Society. As an organization that values diversity, SPJ is looking for candidates who represent and encompass differing backgrounds based on race, ethnicity, age, gender, nationality, sexual orientation, disability, appearance, geography, media discipline and professional status. SPJ is branded as the nation’s most broad-based journalism association, which is a statement to the professional and personal attributes of our membership.

Positions up for election this year include:

— President-elect (elected every year)
— Secretary-Treasurer (elected every year)
— At-Large Director (two-year position)
— Campus Adviser At-Large (two-year position)
— Student Representative (two positions, elected every year)
— Directors for Regions 1, 4, 5, 7, 8 and 9 (two-year position)

Special Qualifications

SPJ’s bylaws require President and President-elect candidates to have “served as a member of the board of directors, or the board of the Sigma Delta Chi Foundation, or been the chair of a national committee or a professional chapter president who also has been or is a member of a national committee.”

Campaign Guidelines

These election campaign guidelines should be followed by all candidates for the SPJ national board of directors. Candidates with questions should the SPJ Nominations Committee Chairman or the Executive Director.

1. There will be no candidate speeches during regional meetings, other than those given by candidates for regional director.

2. Candidate speeches will be no more than three minutes in duration and will be delivered during the opening business meeting. Speeches will be streamed live and available on the election home page as soon as possible after they are delivered.

3. No signs may be posted in the hotel or convention site.

4. Current national SPJ board members should remain neutral in all elections.

5. No one may use the membership database for political purposes.

Additional notes:
— The order in which candidates give speeches will be based on the alphabetical order of their last names.
— While candidates may not post signs in the convention hotel, fliers, buttons and other literature may be distributed. Contact SPJ Executive Director (or designee) to arrange for display space near the convention’s registration area or trade show.
— All candidates will receive information about board and committee meetings before the convention. Candidates are encouraged to attend board and committee meetings that are applicable to their prospective position.
— Candidates may purchase advertising space in Quill, the convention program or the convention newspaper at rates discounted 50 percent off the current rate card. Contact SPJ Executive Director (or designee) for information.

How to Run

Interested candidates should indicate their intention to run by emailing Nominations Committee Chairman Sonny Albarado and Executive Director Joe Skeel. There is no formal deadline to declare candidacy, but candidates wanting to run a profile in Quill ahead of the convention must make a May 5 copy deadline.

Board Member Responsibilities

Board Meetings
— Attend two meetings per year (Spring — Indianapolis, Convention)
— Participate in board conference calls throughout the year
— Review board materials prior to meetings
— Represent the voices of SPJ members

— Use your board stipend responsibly
— Contribute annually to the SDX Foundation (no required amount)

— Help select a regional Mark of Excellence judging coordinator or perform those duties
— Be willing to assist with judging as needed

— Communicate on a regular basis with chapters (if applicable), headquarters and other board members
— Use social media relating to SPJ responsibly

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Society of Professional Journalists
Eugene S. Pulliam National Journalism Center
3909 N. Meridian St.
Indianapolis, IN 46208
317/927-8000 | Fax: 317/920-4789

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