SPJ21 Journalism Conference: September 2-4, 2021

Join us this September — from wherever you are — for the journalism conference of the year.

Home > About SPJ > Communities and Committees

Communities and Committees

The work of SPJ is largely done at the national committee and community level. No matter what your passion — freedom of information, diversity, ethics, freelance, international journalism, First Amendment rights, journalism education — SPJ has an outlet for your talents, passion and energy. Scroll down to learn more about (and get involved with) our committees, and use the links to the right to discover and join any of our growing communities.

Active committees
Awards & Honors
Bylaws
Diversity & Inclusion
Professional Standards and Ethics
Finance
Freedom of Information
Journalism Education
Legal Defense Fund
Membership
Nominations
Resolutions
Regional Coordinators


Awards & Honors

This committee oversees most of the Society's awards, which are dedicated to recognizing outstanding achievement in journalism. Any changes in guidelines, judging criteria, categories or eligibility are reviewed by this committee.

Related content | Awards Committee Roster

Awards & Honors Committee

Brian Collister, chair
Email

Joanna Hernandez, vice chair
@joanna0721

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Bylaws

This committeestrives to ensure the Society conducts its business and operations according to the Society's bylaws. SPJ's bylaws aim to unitemembers and promote good fellowship among them.

SPJ Bylaws | Bylaws Committee Roster

Bylaws Committee Chair

Alex Tarquinio
Independent journalist
Past National President, Society of Professional Journalists
Winner of the 2014 SPJ Howard S. Dubin Outstanding Pro Member Award
LinkedIn
@alextarquinio

Rafael Olmeda, vice chair
Senior writer, Sun-Sentinel
Board member, Society of Professional Journalists
Past President, National Association of Hispanic Journalists (NAHJ)
Past President, UNITY
LinkedIn
@rolmeda

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Diversity & Inclusion

On both chapter and national levels, SPJ provides an open forum for the discussion of diversity issues in journalism. This committee's purpose is to promote a broader voice in newsrooms across the country and expand the depth and quality of news reports through better sourcing. The Society's relevance to its member is based on inclusiveness.

Diversity Home Page | Diversity Committee Roster

Diversity & Inclusion Committee Chair

Eleanore Vega
Freelance Journalist
E-mail

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Professional Standards and Ethics

This committee's purpose is to encourage the use of the Society's Code of Ethics, which promotes the highest professional standards for journalists of all disciplines. Public concerns are often answered by this committee. It also acts as a spotter for reporting trends in the nation, accumulating case studies of jobs well done under trying circumstances.

Ethics Home Page | Professional Standards and Ethics Committee Committee Roster

Professional Standards and Ethics Committee chair

Duane Pohlman
Email

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Finance Committee

The finance committee is chaired by the Society's secretary-treasurer. By authority of that position, the committee reviews the annual budget and sets financial goals. Its recommendations on the budget are forwarded to the SPJ board at its spring meeting.

Finance Committee Roster

Finance Committee Chair

Ivette Davila-Richards
E-mail

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Freedom of Information Committee

This committee is the watchdog of press freedoms across the nation. It relies upon a network of volunteers in each state organized under Project Sunshine. These SPJ members are on the front lines for assaults to the First Amendment and when lawmakers attempt to restrict the public's access to documents and the government's business. The committee often is called upon to intervene in instances where the media is restricted.

FOI Home Page | FOI Committee Roster

Freedom of Information Committee Chair

Haisten Willis
Email
LinkedIn

Kathryn Foxhall, vice chair
Email
LinkedIn

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Journalism Education

This committee's purpose is to promote excellence in education programs and practical research. It acts as a clearinghouse for the Society's academic members and students. It also works with annual convention planners on mentor programs both at the college and high school level.

Tools for Students | Tools for Educators | J-Ed Committee Roster

Journalism Education Committee Chair

Yvette B. Walker
University of Oklahoma

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Legal Defense Fund

The Society's Legal Defense Fund is a unique account that can be tapped for providing journalists with legal or direct financial assistance. Application to the fund is approved by either a small committee or the national board, depending on the level of assistance sought. The committee works throughout the year raising funds for LDF.

More information | LDF Committee Roster

Legal Defense Fund Committee Chair

J. Israel Balderas, Esq.
National board member, Society of Professional Journalists
Assistant professor of journalism, Elon University
Email
@jisraelbalderas

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Membership

This committee follows membership trends in the Society and recommends membership recruitment drives to the national board and executive director. It is called upon to review chapter requirements, dues, organizational structure and other quality-of-life issues affecting the membership.

Why Join? | Member Resources | Membership Committee Roster

Membership Committee Chair

Adam Sennott
Email
LinkedIn

Ana Rocío Álvarez, vice chair
LinkedIn

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Nominations

SPJ’s Nominations Committee is primarily responsible for identifying, vetting and recommending candidates for election to the Board of Directors.

SPJ Election Central | Nominations Committee Roster

Nominations Committee Chair

Ashanti Blaize
Email

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Regional Coordinators

SPJ's regional coordinators are responsible for organizing, guiding, supervising and stimulating the activity of each chapter in their regions. Meet SPJ's Regional Coordinators

Regional Coordinators Committee Chair

Jennifer Ellis
@jennifersellis
Email

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Resolutions

The Resolutions Committee meets annually at the Society's National Convention. The group is charged with presenting timely issues for debate before the Society's voting delegates. Its members serve to keep order at business meetings of the Society and to facilitate thoughtful debate. Drafts of resolutions can be submitted by any member of the Society either prior to, or during, convention.

Committee Roster

Resolutions Committee Chair

Michael Savino
@Reporter_Savino
Email

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