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Home > Publications > SPJ Leads > National Honor Feedback, Drug and War Coverage, Summer Programs

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SPJ Leads | 6/12/2008
National Honor Feedback, Drug and War Coverage, Summer Programs


By Pierce Presley
Freelance Writer

ATLANTA OR BUST. Registration for the 2008 SPJ Convention & National Journalism Conference is now open. The program will take place Sept. 4-7 in Atlanta. Surf over to SPJ's Convention page to register or get information about programming, hotel and travel, a roommate request and most other conference details. Early registration rates run through July 28 and are only $185 for professional members and $135 for students, advisers and retirees. Room rates at the Hyatt Regency Atlanta are $160 through Aug. 6 or until the room block fills. Go ahead! Register today!

CAMPAIGN 2008. SPJ is seeking qualified individuals to serve as officers and directors for 2008-2009. The board of directors provides vision, direction and leadership to SPJ, the nation's largest journalism organization.

Elections will be held on Saturday, Sept. 6 at the Hyatt Regency Atlanta, in conjunction with the 2008 SPJ Convention & National Journalism Conference. The following officers and directors will be elected:

President-elect (one-year term). This person automatically becomes SPJ president the following year.
Secretary/Treasurer (one-year term)
Director at Large (two-year term)
Campus Chapter Adviser at Large (two-year term)
Campus Representatives (two seats; one-year terms). These positions include travel stipends to cover costs of student participation.
Region 1 Director (two-year term representing Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Central/Eastern Pennsylvania, Rhode Island and Vermont)
Region 4 Director (two-year term representing Ohio, Michigan, Western Pennsylvania and West Virginia)
Region 5 Director (two-year term representing Illinois, Indiana and Kentucky)
Region 7 Director (two-year term representing Iowa, Kansas, Missouri and Nebraska)
Region 8 Director (two-year term representing Oklahoma and Texas)
Region 9 Director (two-year term representing Colorado, New Mexico, Utah and Wyoming)
Region 10 Director (two-year term representing Alaska, Idaho, Montana, Oregon and Washington)

Please review Articles VI and VII of the SPJ bylaws for descriptions and qualifications.

Interested candidates should contact Immediate Past President Christine Tatum as soon as possible. Although there is no deadline to throw one's hat into the ring, any candidate wishing to have his/her candidacy announced in "Quill" must meet a June 18 copy deadline.

NATIONAL HONORS. Throughout the year, the Society seeks nominations for its highest national honors. As a member, you have the opportunity to leave feedback about the candidates so that the SPJ executive committee is better informed when selecting honorees. Please visit the Awards Candidates page to view the nominees and comment form. To leave feedback, you must be logged into the "For Members" section of the SPJ Web site and provide your SPJ membership number on the feedback form. Anonymous feedback will not be accepted or reviewed. The identities of those offering comments will not be disclosed beyond the executive committee and staff. Questions? Contact Heather Porter at

STORYTELLING AT ITS BEST. SPJ will host Narrative Writing Workshops on June 14 at the University of Florida and June 21 at the University of Houston. Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Tom Hallman Jr. will lead the workshops and share the art of storytelling. Programs will be from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and cost $40 for SPJ members and $60 for non-members. Lunch is included. Late fees apply for registrations received less than two weeks before each workshop. For complete details or to register, visit SPJ's Narrative Writing Workshops page or call Programs Coordinator Heather Porter at (317) 927-8000, ext. 204.

REACHING OUT TO CITIZENS. There's still time to register for the June 28 Citizen Journalism Academy in Los Angeles. This one-day workshop will explore ethics, media law, access to public meetings and records, best practices, smart writing and using technology. Cost is $25, which includes lunch and course materials. Visit SPJ's Citizen Journalism Academy page for more information and to register.

ETHNIC MEDIA TRAINING IN IDAHO. Join SPJ's Freedom of Information Committee Chairman David Cuillier for a training program at the University of Idaho from 9:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. on June 21. The program aims to strengthen reporting and information gathering skills with training on the use of public records. Additionally, sessions will focus on covering tribal governments, including how to access public records on reservations and Native lands. Cost is $10, and the first 25 non-members to register will receive a complimentary six-month SPJ membership. Register now. For more information, e-mail program coordinator Becky Tallent.

DRUG RISKS? SPJ and the Foundation for American Communications will conduct a tele-seminar for journalists on navigating the treacherous waters of covering drug policy. Hosted by clinical statistics expert Janet Wittes, Ph.D., the session aims to help journalists make sense of clinical trial stats, including study size, dosage and cumulative effects, relative vs. absolute risks and defining endpoints. "The FDA Policy Dilemma on Risky Drugs" is scheduled for Wednesday, June 18, at 11 a.m. EDT, and is free for working journalists. Advance registration is required.

WAR AND THE LAW. The Brookings Institution is hosting a panel discussion with author and Brookings Fellow Benjamin Wittes on his book "Law and the Long War." Wittes argues that the problem with the Bush administration's legal course in the war on terror is that it didn't seek, nor did Congress write, laws outlining the legal boundaries in this new kind of conflict. The book includes prescriptions for laws to govern detention, interrogation, trial and surveillance. The panel discussion is set for Monday, June 23, at 2 p.m. in Falk Auditorium in Washington, D.C. More information and registration available at The Brookings Institution Web site.

WAR COVERAGE PRIZE. The Claudio Accardi Prize recognizes information workers, researchers and professional or student journalists whose work helps us understand the effects of war on civil society. Entries can be video or audio up to 15 minutes long or 12,000-word articles, not published before Jan. 1, 2008, in Italian, English, French or Spanish. The entry deadline is Sept. 10, and the prize ceremony is set for Dec. 15 in Rome. Get information online.

GO GREEK FOR CONFERENCE GOODNESS. The Athens Institute for Education and Research (ATINER) is conducting the International City Break Conference on Social Science and Human Development Research from Oct. 17-20. Five hundred euros gets you two nights at a four-star hotel, meals, a night of Greek music and an archaeological tour of Attica (the region, not the prison). Papers from all areas of social sciences and human development are welcome. The deadline for abstracts is June 30. Full papers are due Sept. 17.

ANOTHER GREEK CONFERENCE. ATINER is also hosting the Seventh Annual International Conference on Communication and Mass Media. For 250 euros, you can attend sessions, lunches, coffee breaks and get materials, plus a night of Greek entertainment, an archaeological tour and a one-day cruise of the Greek islands. Lodging is not included. Papers from all areas of mass media and communications are welcome. Abstracts are due Oct. 17.

SDX SCHOLARSHIP BLING. Five Washington, D.C.-area students have received a total of $22,000 in scholarships to pursue careers in journalism. Three American University students and one each from George Washington University and the University of Maryland emerged from a rigorous screening and interview process. The recipients are: Jennifer Easton, journalism junior at GWU; James Phillips, print journalism senior at AU; Dorothy Samuels, journalism junior at AU; Abigail Wihl, print journalism junior at AU; and Jeanette Der Bedrosian, journalism and media studies senior at UMd. Each will receive a $4,000 scholarship. Additionally, Der Bedrosian also will receive the Russ Potts and Ira Allen awards for $1,000 each.

BLOG-O-RAMA. Journalism and the World links to Chinese television "coverage" of Hong Kong's Tiananmen massacre memorial, which according to the state-run media, has nothing to do with Tiananmen; News Gems gives kudos to the Des Moines Register for its coverage of the Parkersburg tornado; Kathy Erich Dowd recounts her launch of a Web site for her freelancing on The Independent Journalist; FOI FYI details how to build a FOI story file to help when an agency denies public records; The SPJ Garden Center recounts discussions with future SPJ leaders at the Scripps Leadership Institute; Elysse James seeks advice as she heads into covering her first presidential campaign on First Draft; and al-Sahafiyeen details a survey of Arab journalists that found that the United States didn't make use of a powerful ally in the war against terrorism.

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