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Home > Grants > Diversity Leadership Program

Diversity Leadership Program

Application deadline: May 12, 2015

Photo SPJ works to promote a broader voice for diverse journalists in newsrooms across the country, and to expand the depth and quality of news reporting through better sourcing.

Diversity efforts are just as important within the SPJ membership as they are in newsrooms and in reporting. Strengthening SPJ’s diversity membership representation is important to the organization’s health and future. The Diversity Leadership Program is an opportunity for members to become more acquainted with SPJ through exposure to the Society. This educational process begins at the national conference and includes a complimentary conference registration and paid travel to the event. Each year, SPJ selects six members to participate in the program and they are referred to as SPJ Diversity Leadership Fellows.

The Diversity Leadership Program was first introduced in 2005 and 48 SPJ members have gone through the program thus far. Participants indicate that they appreciate getting to know members of the SPJ national leadership ladder through the program. The program also affords Fellows the opportunity to feel more connected to the organization and to the conference through their program participation. This connectedness is intended to increase membership retention and to create a larger pool of local and national SPJ leaders .

While at the conference, the Fellows will have a gathering to get to know each other; they will attend SPJ board meetings and business meetings and they will attend the conference sessions and events.

The Fellows' participation in the annual conference is the jumping off point to building a connection and a loyalty to SPJ. The Diversity Leadership Program helps to foster a stronger belief in SPJ and encourages involvement within the organization.

This program is funded by the Sigma Delta Chi Foundation.

Specifically, the program will provide the following:
— A convention registration
— Four-night stay at the conference hotel, the Orlando World Center Marriott
— Airfare to Orlando, Fla. (up to $300)
— One ticket each to the SPJ President's Banquet and RTDNA Paul White Reception.

To be eligible for the scholarship:
— Have at least three years of post-college journalism experience
— Be a member of SPJ for at least one year
— Be a person with disabilities, from the LGBTQ community and/or of color
— Be willing to attend the entire conference and all events/programs planned for the Fellows
— Be willing to get involved/stay involved in SPJ at the local and/or national level
— Be willing to join at least one national committee/community.

Applications are due May 12, 2015. Applicants will be notified by May 31, 2015. Previous participants of the Diversity Leadership Program are not eligible to apply.

If you have any questions, please contact Chris Vachon at 317-927-8000 x 207 or

Application Form




Race/Ethnicity or other representation

SPJ Member Since

Mobile phone


Describe your participation in SPJ/your contributions to SPJ (past and current).

How would you like to contribute to/participate in SPJ in the future?

What efforts have you made to improve diversity at work, within SPJ, in other organizations and/or in your community?

Why do you want to attend the Excellence in Journalism Conference and what do you expect to gain from your experience?

Are you affiliated with any other journalism organizations? If so, please describe your role in those organization(s).

How can you assist SPJ in furthering its diversity mission and goals?

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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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