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Home > Publications > SPJ Leads > Awards Season, monthly AutoDues + discussing name change

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SPJ Leads | 11/13/2013
Awards Season, monthly AutoDues + discussing name change

By Ellen Kobe, SPJ Communications Department



It's that time of year again: awards season. Our awards honor the best journalism in many categories - print, radio, television, newsletters, art/graphics, online and research. Submit entries for the following honors to get your excellent work recognized nationally:

Sigma Delta Chi awards:

Who? This contest is open to all professional journalists in the U.S., as well as international SPJ members.

What? All entries must have been published or broadcast in 2013.

Where? Submit your entries online. $60 per entry for SPJ members / $100 per entry for nonmembers

When? The deadline to submit is Feb. 7.

Mark of Excellence awards:

Who? This contest is open to anyone enrolled in a college or university in the U.S. studying for an academic degree in 2013. International SPJ students may also enter.

What? All entries must have been published or broadcast in 2013.

Where? Submit your entries online. $9 per entry for SPJ members / $18 per entry for nonmembers

When? The deadline to submit is Jan. 24.

High School Essay contest:

Who? All students enrolled in grades 9-12 in U.S. public, private and home schools within the United States.

What? The essay should be 300-500 words and must include an entry form. Please answer the question: "Why is it important that we have news media that are independent of the government?" Entries may be typed or handwritten but must be double-spaced.

Where? Send all entries to: High School Essay Contest, Society of Professional Journalists, 3909 N. Meridian St. Indianapolis, IN 46208; The entry fee is $5.

When? All entries should be postmarked by March 7, 2014.

Know someone who deserves recognition? Pass this information along to them and remind them to sign up for an SPJ membership in order to be eligible for the submission discount.

For more information, please visit the awards page on Questions? Email or call SPJ headquarters at 317.927.8000. Good luck!


Budgeting your SPJ membership is now easier than ever with our monthly renewal system. SPJ AutoDues gives you the ability for your national and chapter dues to automatically be charged to your credit card each month. Donations to SPJ or the Sigma Delta Chi Foundation may be bundled in as well.

Reap all the SPJ member benefits - networking, training, advocacy, etc. - for a low monthly price that doesn't burn a hole in your pocket. Want to sign up? Call Bookkeeper Sarah Beck at 317.920.4787. Questions? Email her at


Should the Society of Professional Journalists change its name to the Society for Professional Journalism? The proposed name change at #EIJ13 has launched a discussion both in and out of the organization.

Want to hear more of the conversation? Saturday, Nov. 16 at 2 p.m. EST, Studio SPJ will focus on the name change. John Ensslin, head of the name change task force, will host two of his fellow task force members Andy Schotz and Michael Koretzky on the show. Which sides will these two board members take? Listen live online or check out the recording of the show afterwards.


SPJ is in the process of reviewing its Code of Ethics, and we need your help staying relevant in the journalism industry today! We want you to tell us what you think needs to be updated in the current code. What's a better way to do this than hosting a chapter event (open to the public, of course)?

SPJ National Campus Representative Lindsey Cook has created a document that tells you everything you need to know about holding a productive and successful discussion about the Code of Ethics in your community. Cook did this with the University of Georgia's ONA/SPJ group, which resulted in an updated Code of Ethics and a comprehensive list of journalism fails.

Plus, there's money involved! If your chapter holds a program like the Los Angeles chapter is planning to next week, the chapter will be entered in a $100 drawing courtesy of Region 3 Director Michael Koretzky.


The SDX Foundation has partnered with For Journalism to offer online classes on various topics, including data visualization, data science/statistics, mapping and web coding. The topics that For Journalism has initially proposed are meant to address technical skills that journalists need to have in an increasingly digital and Web-first industry.

Ultimately, this type of training is available from different sources, but what differentiates For Journalism from others is its comprehensive scope. The courses aren't meant to be one-time events such as webinars, but rather long-term classes that take participants from beginning to end. Lessons will include e-textbooks and virtual study groups with peers. In this sense, courses will be more like a semester-long college class than a one-hour lunchtime webinar.

Visit and start learning today!


The Sigma Delta Chi Foundation seeks proposals for a one-year, renewable project to develop new sources, update existing ones, and incorporate social media information for the Society of Professional Journalists' Rainbow Sourcebook, an online database and mobile app designed to make it easy for journalists to widen the narrow demographic band of sources normally found in the news.

This RFP is part of a three-year, pilot maintenance project. The maximum funding amount is $6,000 annually, but the award will be based on the scope of project and budgeted expenses. We are requesting that individuals partner with an organization, such as their own newsroom or another news organization, in order to enhance transferability and awareness. For more information about the type of project you could propose, visit our request for proposals page.

Follow this link to submit your proposal online. For questions or further information, please contact Sally Lehrman.


Join the New Jersey Pro chapter for an important panel discussion and Q&A titled "Who is a Journalist Now?" This question has become ever more important with the Justice Department's increased monitoring of phone records. The event will take place on Sunday, Nov. 17 from 1:30 to 4 p.m. You can access the invitation and RSVP online.


What was's top headline when they were doing routine maintenance on Tuesday afternoon?

Answer: "WEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE," followed by the words, "STUFF YO."

And the winner is ... Doug Schlatter from Yardley, Penn. Congrats!


Who was hired as the anchor of CNN's media news show "Reliable Sources?"

Submit your answer to Ellen Kobe.

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