Michael J. Feeney, former NYABJ president, dead at 32

Michael J. Feeney, former president of the New York Association of Black Journalists (NYABJ) has died. He was 32.

Michael J. Feeney, former president of the New York Association of Black Journalists (NYABJ) has died. He was 32.

Michael J. Feeney, who recently ended a four-year term as president of the New York Association of Black Journalists (NYABJ), died yesterday at age 32.  Read his obituary from the New York Daily News here http://nydn.us/1TvEGPl.

The OnPointPress.net family joins the National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ), the New York Association of Black Journalists (NYABJ) and the entire world of journalism in mourning the loss of a gifted, caring, passionate and visionary journalist and human being. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family at this difficult time.–OnPointPress.net–

 

 

NABJ congratulates member Kevin Merida on new ESPN job

Longtime NABJ member Kevin Merida is leaving his post as managing editor at the Washington Post for an executive level position at ESPN.

Longtime NABJ member Kevin Merida is leaving his post as managing editor at the Washington Post for an executive level position at ESPN.

WASHINGTON (October 20, 2015) – The National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ) congratulates member Kevin Merida on his appointment as editor of “The Undefeated,” ESPN’s website centering on the intersection of race, culture, and sports.

Merida will be a senior vice president and editor and oversee the content, the direction, and the strategic initiatives undertaken by the site. He joins “The Undefeated” from The Washington Post where he had been managing editor since February 2013 and on staff for 22 years. Upon his appointment at the Post, he became the paper’s first African-American managing editor.

“Kevin is an exceptional journalist who has worked his way up from reporter to editor covering a range of topics, from news of the day to national politics,” said NABJ President Sarah Glover. “Kevin is a transformative leader who has driven pointed editorial coverage of important news stories while balancing the need to create newsrooms that are nimble, flexible, adaptable, and creative. He has mentored talented journalists and helped them to create notable work.”

“Kevin is a remarkably accomplished journalist, editor and leader whom we have long admired and desired to join ‘The Undefeated,'” said Marie Donoghue, ESPN Executive Vice President for Global Strategy and Original Content. “Today’s announcement represents a key step in the evolution of the site and ESPN’s commitment to this ambitious project.”

Before serving as managing editor Merida was the paper’s national editor. Merida was named NABJ’s Journalist of the Year in 2000 in recognition of his storytelling abilities, his commitment to the craft of journalism, and his drive to be an industry influencer by encouraging others to raise the bar.

Merida a Washington, D.C.-area native graduated from Boston University with a degree in journalism. He is the co-author of the biography “Supreme Discomfort: The Divided Soul of Clarence Thomas” and co-author of the bestselling “Obama: The Historic Campaign in Photographs.” Merida who will remain in Washington, D.C., is married to author and former Post columnist Donna Britt with whom he has three sons. NABJ congratulates ESPN on this appointment and wishes Mr. Merida much success at ESPN.

An advocacy group established in 1975 in Washington, D.C., NABJ is the largest organization for journalists of color in the nation, and provides career development as well as educational and other support to its members worldwide. For additional information, please visit, www.nabj.org.–OnPointPress.net.

NABJ mourns the loss of former president Sidmel Estes

Former NABJ President

Former NABJ President Sidmel Estes has died.

WASHINGTON (October 6, 2015) – The National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ) mourns the passing of former NABJ President Sidmel Estes (1991-93). Estes was the first woman to be elected president of the association. She also served as an NABJ regional director and president of the Atlanta chapter. Estes, 60, died October 6.

Estes began her career at WAGA-TV/Fox 5 in Atlanta, where she served as the executive producer of numerous programs. She was the co-creator and executive producer of “Good Day Atlanta,” which became the number one show in its market and won seven Emmy Awards under her direction. In 2006, Estes left WAGA-TV to start BreakThrough Inc., a media consulting firm with clients including the Frederick Douglass Family Foundation, the McCormick Tribune Fellows Foundation, the Tupac Amaru Shakur Foundation and the Atlanta Center for Creative Inquiry. She also taught as an adjunct professor at Emory University and Clark Atlanta University.

A pioneer and journalism industry veteran, Estes’ contributions will never be forgotten.

“NABJ grieves for Miss Sidmel. Our hearts are so heavy. Sidmel’s in-your-face leadership style was my introduction to the best of NABJ as a new student member in 1993,” NABJ President Sarah Glover said. “‘Holy smokes! This lady is for real,’ I thought. She took news organizations to task and members, too. If you were not doing right, she would not hesitate to let you know. Sidmel was an admired journalist and loving mother. She was the working woman who media moms could model and aspire to be. She handled all her roles gracefully. I’m so sad she is gone, but her passion and love for NABJ lives on in all of us.”

During Estes’ tenure as president of the association, NABJ increased its membership to more than 2,000 journalists and was included in Ebony magazine’s list of Top 100 Black Organizations. In 1994, she was a leader and co-creator of the first UNITY: Journalists of Color conference, and was instrumental in the release of its report, “Kerner Plus 25: A Call For Action,” which outlined steps the media industry should take to improve racial diversity.

Estes was born on November 27, 1954 in Marysville, California, to Emellen Estes and Sidney Estes. She attended elementary and high school at public schools in Atlanta. She earned her Bachelor of Science in Journalism in 1976, and her Master of Science in Journalism in 1977, both from Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism in Chicago, where she was later inducted as a charter member of the school’s Hall of Achievement.

NABJ Vice President of Broadcast Dorothy Tucker recounts the advice and mentorship that Estes offered to many.

“At Northwestern, Sid was the big sister who would give you about five seconds to cry on her broad shoulders before delivering the message that defines of our world: ‘Now wipe your eyes and get  your A– back out there.'” Tucker said.

As a result of her commitment to the community, Estes has received numerous awards from civic, community and church organizations. During her career in television and journalism, she has been recognized numerous times. Atlanta’s Mayor Andrew Young proclaimed “Sidmel Estes-Sumpter Day” on November 18, 1988, after she was named Media Woman of the Year by the Atlanta Chapter of the National Association of Media Women. She was featured in Ebony’s 100 Most Influential Black Americans in 1993, and in More Magazine’s book “50 Over 50.”

Estes was honored with the Silver Circle Award from the Television Academy and has won several Emmy Awards. She received Northwestern University’s Alumni Service Award after being elected as president of the Northwestern Black Alumni Association in 2004.

“She was a giant in our industry who helped countless young people achieve their dreams of becoming journalists through her presidency of the National Association of Black Journalists and, recently, as an adjunct professor at Clark Atlanta University,” AABJ President Eric Stirgus said in a statement from the chapter.

Estes is survived by two sons, Joshua and Sidney.

NABJ extends its sincerest condolences to Estes’ family and the countless friends within the journalism community who she leaves behind. The association will provide information on her funeral and where condolences can be sent as soon as those details are provided.

An advocacy group established in 1975 in Washington, D.C., NABJ is the largest organization for journalists of color in the nation, and provides career development as well as educational and other support to its members worldwide. For more information, please visit www.nabj.org.–OnPointPress.net–

Sarah Glover, social media maven, elected NABJ’s 21st president

Sarah Glover, NABJ's 21st president.

Sarah Glover, NABJ’s 21st president.

Minneapolis, MN (August 9, 2015)- Sarah Glover was elected as the 21st President of the National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ) on August 7.

According to the NABJ Elections Committee, Glover defeated her opponent, Mira Lowe by receiving 347 votes, Lowe earned 167 votes. Glover is the social media editor for NBC Owned Television Stations. Prior to joining NBC OTS, she worked at NBC10 Philadelphia (2012-2014), Philadelphia Daily News (2008-2012) and The Philadelphia Inquirer (1999-2008).

For two decades, Glover has also been a freelance photographer for outlets including Jet Magazine, The Washington Post, Liberty City Press and Black Enterprise. She founded the Diverse Social Media Editors & Digital Journalists Facebook Group, a platform for education, advocacy and training for journalists of color. Sarah successfully managed nearly $100,000 in chapter funds during her tenure as chapter president, and ensured the chapter stayed in the black. Glover has been awarded fellowships from the Kiplinger Program in Public Affairs Journalism and Knight Digital Media Center.

In the vice president of broadcast race Dorothy Tucker defeated Dedrick Russell and Galen Gordon with a total of 230 votes. Russell received 157 votes, and Gordon received 126 votes. In the media-related representative race Tanzi West-Barbour defeated Terry Allen and Marc Willis with a total of 40 votes. Allen received 32 votes, and Willis received 31 votes.

Candidates running unopposed, who will have seat on the 2015-2017 board of directors, include Benet Wilson, vice president of digital, Marlon Walker, vice president of print, Sherlon Christie, secretary, Greg Morrison, treasurer, Dave Jordan, parliamentarian, Johann Calhoun, region I director, Vickie Thomas, region II director
Gayle Hurd, region III director, Marcus Vanderberg, region IV director and Michelle Johnson, academic representative. The student representative slot is vacant.

An advocacy group established in 1975 in Washington, D.C., NABJ is the largest organization for journalists of color in the nation, and provides career development as well as educational and other support to its members worldwide.–OnPointPress.net.

Finalists announced for NABJ 2015 Professional Chapter of the Year

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Washington, D.C. (June 23, 2015): — The National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ) is proud to announce its three finalists for the 2015 Professional Chapter of the Year Award. This year’s finalists include the Pittsburgh Black Media Federation (PBMF), the Southern New England Association of Black Journalists (SNEABJ), and the Washington Association of Black Journalists (WABJ). The award recognizes a professional chapter which has gone above and beyond to attract and retain members, design and execute exceptional programming for its members, demonstrated a significant level of involvement at the national level, and engaged their local community, among other criteria.

“We applaud the finalists for chapter of the year, PBMF, SNEABJ, and WABJ,” said NABJ President Bob Butler. “These chapters have demonstrated why our chapters are the lifeblood of the organization. By working to engage members on a local level, they extend NABJ’s reach. They support the career development of aspiring journalists as well as seasoned professionals. These chapters also demonstrate an ongoing commitment to their respective communities, promoting inclusivity and diversity, but also engaging folks around issues important to folks locally.”

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PBMF has undergone a complete transformation with new leadership and is currently thriving under the direction of its president, Tory Parrish. PBMF successfully held its longstanding, annual programs, which were the 31st annual Frank Bolden Urban Journalism Workshop for high school students, the 26th annual Robert L. Vann Media Awards and the Soul Café, which is an annual music and arts showcase and scholarship fundraiser. In addition, PBMF’s “Still Feel Like Going On,” a 10-week photography project for teen boys, was more closely aligned under the umbrella of PBMF programs.

Additionally, a new Community Service Subcommittee is one of the most active of PBMF’s committees and subcommittees. Its successful initiatives have included a children’s book drive, PBMF Reads: Project Book Bridge, and a coat drive that was tied to a holiday happy hour, ‘Coats and Cocktails.’

SNEABJ represents working and aspiring journalists in print, broadcast, and online in Rhode Island, Massachusetts and Connecticut. Barbara Morse Silva is the president of the chapter. Monthly meetings rotate among media outlets between the three states. This group has made tremendous strides during its first year as a professional NABJ affiliate chapter. They have grown their paid membership both locally and nationally while offering both community-related and journalist benefits through its programming to more than a 200 people.

The chapter also offered its first community forum called “Does Race Matter to the Media?” The forum was held in December at Brown University. The event, which drew in more than a hundred community members, educators, social activists, and journalists from all backgrounds, focused on recent high profile race-related cases including Michael Brown, Eric Garner, Tamir Rice, and Donald Sterling, among many others that happened in 2014.

Through hard work and dedication, WABJ has maintained strong membership support, and with attendance numbers that continue to grow. This chapter is very active in holding meetings every month and sponsoring events almost as frequently. Invited guests at its most recent meetings include leaders in the journalism industry, such as network executives and reporters. The chapter is lead by its president, Donna Walker.

In March of 2014, WABJ held one of its Hallmark programs, the Urban Journalism Workshop (UJW). Three journalism students received scholarships totaling near $5,000 for their respective endeavors in print, and broadcast journalism. Last year, WABJ also held their first “Summer SOULcial,” an opportunity for members to meet and network while enjoying some good ol’ picnic fare. At the NABJ convention in Boston, the group sponsored a networking reception where professionals united to discuss the numerous seminars and workshops designed to improve journalists’ skills in the workplace. In the fall, it was the lead organization to support a networking event sponsored by CBS, and WABJ threw its annual holiday party in December, which was also well attended.

Throughout the year, the organization co-sponsored the Diversity Job Fair in Washington, DC. It was one of the largest groups to attend the NBC Diversity mixer held at NBC 4, and it even had a group represent the pre-screening of the award- winning film ‘Selma,’ before its nationwide release. This year’s winner will be named during NABJ’s 40th Annual Convention and Career Fair which takes place August 5 through August 9 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. For additional information, ticket sales and registration, please visit us at www.nabj.org.–OnPointPress.net.

NABJ salutes its member, Lester Holt, newly-minted NBC Nightly News anchor

Longtime NBC News Anchor Lester Holt was named permanent anchor of NBC Nightly News, replacing discredited former anchor Brian Williams who was suspended for repeatedly lies. Williams will remain at NBC in some capacity.

Longtime NBC News Anchor Lester Holt was named permanent anchor of NBC Nightly News, replacing discredited former anchor Brian Williams who was suspended for repeatedly lying on air. Williams will remain at NBC.

Washington, D.C., June 18, 2015:The National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ) congratulates member Lester Holt on his appointment as anchor of the “NBC Nightly News.”

“In a more than 30-year career Lester Holt has become one of the finest journalists of his generation. He is an engaging storyteller, an agile field reporter, and a commanding figure behind the anchor desk,” said NABJ President Bob Butler. “I have known Lester for most of that time and he has gained the trust of viewers for his reporting and anchoring. He has the respect of his colleagues and peers because of the consistency of the caliber of his work and his notable versatility in reporting and anchoring in a myriad of situations.”

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Holt joined the NBC News in 2000 and in that time served as an anchor for MSNBC before being named co-anchor of the weekend edition of “Today” in 2003, and the weekend edition of “NBC Nightly News” in 2007. He became the anchor of NBC’s newsmagazine “Dateline” in 2011.

Earlier in his career he was a lead anchor for WBBM-TV in Chicago, a weekend anchor and reporter for WCBS-TV in New York, and a weekend anchor for KNXT now KCBS in Los Angeles, each CBS owned and operated stations. Before his career in television, Holt worked for CBS Radio station KCBS in San Francisco.

In a statement today release by NBC News, Holt expressed his sentiments.

“This is an enormous honor. The respect and admiration I have for the Nightly News team has only grown deeper over the last several months that we’ve been together. Day-in and day-out under an uncomfortable spotlight they have produced world-class journalism. I’m very proud and grateful to be part of such an unflappable and dedicated team of professionals as we move forward together.”

Holt has Jamaican roots through his maternal grandparents, who were born in Jamaica, West Indies.

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NABJ Vice President-Broadcast Dedrick Russell noted the historic significance of Holt’s appointment.

“It is thrilling to see that an African-American will for the first time in television history be the solo anchor of a network evening newscast,” said Russell. “Lester’s presence will surely inspire the next generation of young journalists to make a commitment to the craft and aim to tell honest, creative, and compelling stories which illuminate the diverse world around them.”

In 1978 NABJ founder Max Robinson became the nation’s first black television network news anchor when he was made part of the three-anchor team of ABC’s “World News Tonight.” Ten years later in 1988 member Carole Simpson became anchor of the weekend editions of ABC’s “World News Tonight,” a position she held for 15 years. Member Russ Mitchell was made anchor of the CBS “Evening News Saturday” in 1999, and like Holt also simultaneously anchored his network’s weekend morning show.

Lester Holt is the new anchor of NBC Nightly News.

Lester Holt is the new anchor of NBC Nightly News.

“As NABJ reflects on 40 years, this is a major milestone for the organization”, said Darryl R. Matthews Sr., NABJ’s Executive Director. “On behalf of the entire NABJ family we could not be more proud of Lester. We look forward to watching him flourish in this new capacity.”

NABJ salutes NBC for recognizing Mr. Holt’s ability to lead the program and wishes Mr. Holt much success in his new role.

An advocacy group established in 1975 in Washington, D.C., NABJ is the largest organization for journalists of color in the nation, and provides career development as well as educational and other support to its members worldwide. For additional information, please visit, www.nabj.org.–OnPointPress.net.

Walt Disney’s Carole Munroe receives NABJ’s Patricia L. Tobin Media Professional Award

Carole Monroe

Carole Munroe, director of public relations for Walt Disney World Resort is the recipient of the 2015 National Association of Black Journalists’ (NABJ’s) Patricia L. Tobin Media Professional Award.

WASHINGTON (May 22, 2015) − The Board of Directors of The National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ) has selected Carole Munroe, director of public relations for the Walt Disney World Resort, as the recipient of the 2015 Patricia L. Tobin Media Professional Award. Recipients of the Pat Tobin Award must be entrepreneurs, public relations, advertising, or marketing professionals, or media owners who serve as trailblazers and bridge builders for other media professionals thus improving the media profession at large.

“Carole Munroe is a skilled public relations practitioner. She has a strategic mind, business savvy, combined with a clear and confident style of communication,” said NABJ President Bob Butler. “As the public relations lead for Disney theme parks she helps a global audience understand how special Disney’s parks are and the amazing experiences they offer to visitors from around the world.”

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Munroe’s career with Disney spans 25 years. As director of public relations for the Walt Disney World Resort, she is the site leader for all domestic, international and multi-cultural public relations opportunities impacting the entire destination, which includes four Walt Disney World theme parks, 25 owned and operated resort hotels, two water parks, two full-service spas, the ESPN Wide World of Sports facilities and Downtown Disney (Disney Springs) entertainment, dining and retail complex. Munroe and her team also support other Disney Destinations businesses such as Disney Cruise Line, Adventures By Disney, Disney Vacation Club and Disney’s Fairytale Weddings.

“Carole Munroe is an extraordinary representative for Disney and she works hard on behalf of Disney theme parks, the company’s initiatives, and the brand at large” said Dawn A. Roberts, associate member representative. “An active member of the association she has leveraged her relationships to ensure that Disney is a committed partner to NABJ.”

Munroe is respected as a public relations, brand and marketing strategist. She frequently speaks before public relations and marketing professionals. EBONY Magazine has recognized her as an Outstanding Woman in Marketing and Communications. Her work with Disney Parks has also been honored with a Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) Bronze Anvil Award, A New York Public Relations Society Big Apple Award, Promax Award for national promotion and a Purpose Award for Disney’s Dreamers Academy. Munroe is a devoted mentor and considers the success of those she has influenced among her greatest professional rewards.

A graduate of the University of Georgia Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication, Munroe currently serves on the alumni board of the college. Munroe was a journalist earlier in her career, working as a reporter, producer and news director. She says that she uses her storytelling abilities every day to relate powerful stories about her company, one of the world’s most recognizable entertainment and media brands.

The Pat Tobin Media Professional Award is named for NABJ member Pat Tobin. Tobin passed away in 2008, and was president and CEO of Tobin and Associates, a prominent minority, woman-owned public relations firm based in Los Angeles. She was a dedicated activist for causes that impacted minorities, women and youth. Ms. Munroe’s honor will be presented to her at the association’s Salute to Excellence Gala on August 8th during NABJ’s Annual Convention and Career Fair in Minneapolis.

An advocacy group established in 1975 in Washington, D.C., NABJ is the largest organization for journalists of color in the nation, and provides career development as well as educational and other support to its members worldwide. For additional information visit www.nabj.org.–OnPointPress.net.