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SPJ Launches New Web Site


Monday, Sept. 24, 2001

News editors, Business editors, Feature editors,
Photo editors, Assignment desks

Ray Marcano, SPJ President, 937/225-2323 or rmarcano@coxohio.com
Paul K. McMasters, Sigma Delta Chi Foundation President, 703/284-3511 or pmcmasters@freedomforum.org
James L. Gray, SPJ and SDX Foundation Executive Director, 317/927-8000 or jgray@spj.org

INDIANAPOLIS – Today the Society of Professional Journalists unveils its newly enhanced Web site (www.spj.org) with features for journalists, students, the public and SPJ members.

Some of the new features include: a media job bank, daily news about the media industry, an online version of SPJ’s Quill Magazine, and many SPJ members-only features.

“We’re very proud of our new Web site,” said SPJ President Ray Marcano, an assistant managing editor at the Dayton (Ohio) Daily News. “It has a number of new features and easier navigation. Our staff worked very hard to bring this to our members and the journalism community, and the result speaks for itself.”

The site and its ongoing upkeep are paid for by a $120,000 grant from the Sigma Delta Chi Foundation, the educational arm of the Society. InetSolution Inc. of Utica, Mich., redesigned the site in the past eight months under the supervision of SPJ Headquarters.

“This Web site is one of the best investments the SDX Foundation could have made to advance its primary mission of journalism education,” said SDX Foundation President Paul McMasters, First Amendment Ombudsman at the Freedom Forum in Arlington, Va. “There is a wealth of material to be found here. It is one-stop resource for all journalists in search of better ways to meet their First Amendment mandate to the American public.”

The new Web site retains the former www.spj.org address, as well as the organizational information previously available. New features include:
• Opportunities to join SPJ online.
• Online registration for SPJ’s
professional development programs, including workshops and conventions.
• A job bank where media organizations can post job openings, internships and fellowships free of charge for all SPJ Web site visitors to browse.
• Daily postings of PressNotes, SPJ’s roundup of news in the media industry.
• More timely posting of SPJ new releases
• Content of Quill, SPJ’s magazine, posted online.
• New online discussion boards for Freedom of Information, diversity, ethics, journalism education, international journalism, students, general journalism and more.
• A more navigable calendar of SPJ events.

“These new features give SPJ a much better presence online, at a time when our missions of improving and protecting journalism are more important than ever,” said SPJ President-Elect Al Cross, political writer and columnist for The Courier-Journal in Louisville, who will become SPJ President on Oct. 6.

The new site also includes many features only for SPJ members. Members will be able to create an online login to access features that include:
• Membership renewal.
• Ability to change your name, address or other contact information in SPJ’s database and choose what information is available for other SPJ members.
• Search SPJ’s database for other members and their contact information.
• Access to Quill magazine archives.
• Clearance to post messages on the site’s new message boards.

“It’s important that our members see value in their SPJ membership. We already provide a tremendous amount of information to anyone who visits our Web site,” said James L. Gray, CAE, executive director of SPJ and the SDX Foundation. “But our members deserve more, and this is one way we’ll provide that added value.”

SPJ leaders also will be able to access their chapter’s information online. Leaders can log on to run and download chapter rosters, view a chapter’s membership changes, access a list of prospective chapter members and compile a list of chapter members who have not renewed their memberships. They also will be able to download chapter annual report forms and sign up for chapter Web site hosting, also provided by SPJ.

Founded in 1961, the Sigma Delta Chi Foundation is dedicated to ensuring that those who carry on the tradition of a free press are prepared for the challenge. Its goal is to support the educational programs of the Society of Professional Journalists and to serve the professional needs of journalists and students pursuing careers in journalism.

The Society of Professional Journalists works to improve and protect journalism. The organization is the nation’s largest and most broad-based journalism organization, dedicated to encouraging the free practice of journalism and stimulating high standards of ethical behavior. Founded in 1909 as Sigma Delta Chi, SPJ promotes the free flow of information vital to a well-informed citizenry; works to inspire and educate the next generation of journalists; and protects First Amendment guarantees of freedom of speech and press.


Sarah A. Shrode
SPJ Director of Communications
Society of Professional Journalists
Eugene S. Pulliam National Journalism Center
3909 N. Meridian St.
Indianapolis, IN 46208-4045
fax: 317/920-4789

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