Author Archive | admin

Hall of Fame; podcasting; 2019 contest

Hello fellow SPJ members,

A New Jersey Journalism Hall of Fame, podcast workshops and a bigger, better contest were among the topics discussed when the board of the New Jersey Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists held its annual summer retreat recently.

We met on July 28 in the Princeton Room of the Princeton Public Library surrounded by first-edition John McPhee books. The four-hour gathering was an opportunity for our board to make some plans for the year ahead. Here are a few things we discussed:

Holding our first-ever Journalism Hall of Fame event.

We did some initial planning last year by having former chapter presidents suggest and select nominees. This year we discussed actually staging the event, quite possibly at William Paterson University in Wayne. Stay tuned.

Expanding our signature awards contest beyond the current four categories.

This year we awarded our traditional honors of the Wilson Barto “Rookie of the Year,” the Tim O’Brien award for best use of open public records and the Stuart and Beverly Awbrey Award for community journalism. We also continued with our Courage Under Fire award, although no winners were chosen this year.

Next year we hope to add awards for journalism educator of the year, best audio story, best video story and journalist of the year. Do you have any ideas about categories that we should add? If so, let me know.

Hosting two “Podcasting 3.0” workshops

We’d hold one in Philadelphia and one in New York City later this year and early next year. This would be an updated “hands-on” workshop similar to one we did three years ago at the New Jersey Institute of Technology in Newark. Both workshops would be done in collaboration with other SPJ chapters, one with the Keystone SPJ chapter in October and the other with the New York City Deadline Club in the spring.

Collaborating more with other chapters.

Watch for details on all of these events in the months ahead. And if you would like to be a part of the planning process, let me know by emailing me at johnensslin@gmail.com

Continue Reading 0

Rutgers student is first Fran Burns scholarship winner

Congratulations to Sarah Doherty, an SPJ student member from Rutgers, who is the first-ever recipient of our Fran Burns scholarship fund.

Sarah will receive $500 from our chapter to help her attend Excellence in Journalism, SPJ’s national conference in Baltimore on Sept. 27-29.

The scholarship is named after Fran Burns, a former SPJ New Jersey president and cherished member of our chapter who died in September 2017.

Fran was a loyal member of SPJ who made a point of attending our conferences when she could. Our board felt this scholarship was a fitting way to honor her memory.

Sarah is from Cape May, where she has worked for the past three summers as a lifeguard for the Cape May Beach Patrol.

She attended Cape May Tech High School where she studied Communication Arts Technology for three years.

“I have always known that I wanted to be a news anchor, which is why I decided to major in Journalism and Media Studies at Rutgers University-New Brunswick,” she wrote.

“Furthermore, since I transferred into Rutgers in Spring 2018, I have been trying to get involved as much as I can,”  she added.

“For the 2018-2019 school year, which will be my sophomore year, I have an internship with RU Give Where You Live, a position on the Rutgers Big Ten Network, and the position of Secretary for the Society of Professional Journalists. I also plan on being involved with WRSU and possibly the Daily Targum.”

We look forward to seeing Sarah in Baltimore.

Are you considering going to Baltimore for EIJ 2018?

If so, you might want to register before the early bird deadline of July 25.

Doing so can save you up to $100 on the cost of registration.

You can find more information about the convention at http://excellenceinjournalism.org/

If you are planning to go, let us know. Our chapter has two delegates for the convention as well as an alternate. We will be happy to consider you for one of those roles.

Contact me at johnensslin@gmail.com if you are interested.

Our summer retreat

Each summer our SPJ New Jersey board of directors holds an annual retreat to plan our goals and activities for the year ahead.

This year will we hold our retreat at the Princeton Library at 65 Witherspoon Street in Princeton from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. onSaturday, July 28.

Chapter members are welcome to attend all our part of the retreat. If you are interested, please let me know.

Our recent election affirmed the 11 candidates who ran for the SPJ New Jersey Board.

Here are our officers:

  • John Ensslin, President
  • Miriam Ascarelli, Vice President
  • Elizabeth Oguss, Treasurer
  • Emily Kratzer, Secretary

And here are our board members:

  • Robert Bugai
  • Nicholas Hirshon
  • David Levitt
  • Matt McGrath
  • Jane Primerano
  • Claire Regan
  • Bob Schapiro
Continue Reading 0

Remembering the Union Hotel

SPJ, NJSPJ mark

hotel’s historic role

SPJ New Jersey celebrated a special event in Flemington where we unveiled a plaque that marked the Union Hotel’s entry on SPJ’s national historic sites in journalism registry.

About 35 people attended the ceremony June 30th  when we presented the plaque to the Hunterdon County Historical Society Library in downtown Flemington. Hear the ceremony at Studio SPJ.

The Historical Society has agreed to serve as temporary custodian of the plaque until the future of the Union Hotel is resolved.

The hotel served as a media hub for journalists who came from around the world to cover the Lindbergh baby kidnap-murder trial which took place at the courthouse across the street in January 1935.

Among the journalists covering that trial were:

  • Arthur Brisbane, one of the best-known editors of his day who worked for the Hearst Newspapers
  • H.L. Mencken, the well-known journalist, satirist and social critic from Baltimore.
  • Dorothy Parker, the wisecracking writer from Long Branch who became part of the famous Algonquin Hotel roundtable writers.
  • Walter Winchell, the newspaper and radio gossip columnist who wrote for the Hearst papers.
  • Damon Runyon, the journalist whose stories about characters in New York City were collected in his book “Guys and Dolls.”

SPJ New Jersey recognizes that the Union Hotel has seen some hard times since 1935 and that it’s not what it was when these journalists came to town.

We also note that there has been a fierce debate over the future of the hotel and its redevelopment.

Our role is not to weigh in on the details of that dispute.

But our plaque says loud and clear that this site represents a significant chapter in the history of American journalism.

We hope that in some fashion the site is preserved for future generations to appreciate.

Special thanks here to Patricia Millen, executive director of the historical society, for taking care of our plaque and making this event possible.

Remembering the CapGazette

The dreadful murders of five people within the Capitol-Gazette newsroom in Annapolis last week has left many of us shaken and sorrowful.

We greatly admire the “Hell Yes” persistence of their colleagues who published their paper while working through their grief.

SPJ New Jersey shares that grief.

At our board meeting in Flemington, we voted to donate $100 to the GoFundMe campaign that was set up to help the families of those whose lives were lost.

It is the least we can do to honor their memory.…

Continue Reading 0

Tribute to shooting victims

We pay tribute to the community of journalists who serve us and we mourn the deaths of GERALD FISHMAN, 61; ROB HIAASEN, 59; JOHN MCNAMARA, 56; REBECCA SMITH, 34; and WENDI WINTERS, 65; who died June 28 at work at the Annapolis Capital Gazette. We also remember ALISON PARKER and ADAM WARD, employees of CBS affiliate WDBJ in Roanoke, Va., who died Aug. 26, 2015; and Teaneck-born Don Bolles, who died June 13, 1976.

To donate to a Go Fund Me campaign that helps victims’ families, click here.

Continue Reading 0

Plaque unveiling is June 30

The Union Hotel named a Historic site in Journalism by NJ-SPJ, SPJ

Join us in Flemington at noon Saturday, June 30 when the New Jersey chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists unveils a plaque commemorating the role of the Union Hotel as the hub of world-wide media coverage during the Lindbergh kidnapping trial in 1935.

The plaque commemorates the hotel’s role in housing an international press corps that converged on Flemington for the trial of Bruno Richard Hauptmann, who was tried and convicted for the kidnapping and murder of the infant son of aviator Charles Lindbergh. Reporters covering the trial included Arthur Brisbane, H.L. Mencken, Dorothy Parker, Damon Runyon, and Walter Winchell.

The Union Hotel is the first site in New Jersey to be added to SPJ’s National List of Historic Sites in Journalism.

The Society’s Historic Sites in Journalism program honors the people and places that have played important roles in American journalistic history. The program began in 1942.

The plaque will be unveiled at the Hunterdon Historical Society Library at 114 Main St. in Flemington. The Historical Society has agreed to take temporary custody of the plaque until the future of the Union Hotel becomes more clear.

All are welcome to attend this free event.

For further information, contact John Ensslin at 973-513-5632.

Other historic sites

Other historic sites include The Pennsylvania Packet in Philadelphia, the first successful daily newspaper in the United States and first to publish the Declaration of Independence and the U. S. Constitution, Freedom’s Journal in New York City, the first Black newspaper published in the United States and the National Press Club in Washington, D.C.

 …

Continue Reading 0

Powered by WordPress. Designed by WooThemes