KCABJ Newsletter for February 2010

Successful Membership Drive
About 20 people attended the second annual Kansas City Association of Black Journalists Black History Month Membership and Fundraising drive.
The event was at Gates Bar-B-Q at the Paseo and Cleaver Boulevard. Journalists from the Kansas City, Independence and St. Joseph print and broadcast media and public relations institutions attended. KCABJ President Greg Moore told people about the KCABJ Urban Student Journalism Academy, which tentatively is set to occur the two weeks after Father’s Day at Metropolitan Community College-Penn Valley. The orientation would be June 19; the program would run June 21 through July 2.
Applications will be available in March at http://www.kcabj.org as well as paper applications. Members discussed ways to get more students to apply for the free program, which offers scholarships to the top graduates. Greg said the goal was to get more people of color to become journalists. KCABJ has sponsored the academy since 1982.
“There are more stories to tell,” Greg said. “We’re going to give them the equipment to tell those stories.”
The fundraiser resulted in KCABJ picking up 10 new/renewed members.

Survey Shows Media Problems
The mainstream media do not contribute to improved race relations despite the nation election Barack Obama has the first African American president, according to a new survey of journalists of color.
The 2010 “Race and the Media” survey indicates that for the second consecutive year, 95 percent of the respondents thought the mainstream media poorly covered stories on racial issues in America’s multiracial society. The respondents cited “too little diversity in newsrooms” and a lack of understanding by editors and producers of the concerns of people of color. UNITY: Journalists of Color reported the findings.
The survey also noted that while “racial and cultural issues are more likely to be covered,” the overwhelming majority of the respondents did not think that “journalists of color cover more high profile stories” or that additional coverage translates into creating opportunities for newsroom advancement for journalists of color. Similar views applied to women and gender issues.
Richard Prince in his Journal-ism column writes that budget-cutting has resulted in about 90 positions being axed at CBS. Continuing an industry trend, black journalists have not been spared.

Other Diversity News
People continue to raise questions about a new Nikon CoolPix S630 digital camera. DiversityInc. reported that the “smart” camera gives an error message when being used to shoot Asians, asking, “Did someone blink?” According to TIME, which ran the story, Nikon has been working to improve the accuracy of the blink-warning function on its Coolpix cameras.
Registrations are being accepted for the 35th Annual National Association of Black Journalists convention. It will run July 28-Aug. 1 in San Diego. The early bird registration is April 1. The cost is $225 for KCABJ members who also are members of NABJ. The cost goes up afterward. The convention will be at the Manchester Grand Hyatt Hotel.

News You Can Use
The National Association of Black Journalists from March 4-6 will hold a conference of health disparities. It will be at the Barbara Jordan Conference Center at Kaiser Family Foundation in Washington, D.C. For more information write to Ryan Williams at rwilliams@nabj.org.
The National Society of Newspaper Columnists is seeking entries for its awards program. March 15 is the deadline. For more information call Luenna Kim at 415-722-7030.
The Trotter Group of Black Voices in Commentary will hold its annual meeting April 18-21 at the University of Louisville. For more information write to DeWayne Wickham at dewick@worldnet.att.net
KSHB-TV/KMCI-TV is seeking applications for an assistant news director, executive producer and an integrated media account executive. For more information write to Tracy Wakeman at wakeman@nbcactionnews.com.
Emory University has an opening for a media relations officer/all-platform journalist. For more information go to Emery University’s Web site and contact Beverly Clark.
The Kansas City Star has an opening for a general interest sports columnist. For more information contact Holly Lawton at 816-234-4350.
Kansas State University has openings for an associate director of Student Publications and for an assistant professor of journalism and mass communications. For more information go to http://www.k-state.edu/affact/Opportunities/underclass.htm.
The Society of Professional Journalists is offering professional development sessions in Omaha on April 9-10. For more information call Heather Porter at 317-927-8000, Ext. 204.
The Casey Medals given by the Journalism Center on Children and Families is accepting entries for its competition honoring exemplary reporting on children, youth and families. For more information call 301-405-8808.
NABJ is seeking a new executive director. For more information go to nabj.org.
NABJ is seeking applications for summer internships. For more information go to nabj.org.
The New York Times Journalism Institute is seeking applications. The program will be at Dillard University in New Orleans on May 16-31. For more information go to nabj.org.

KC People
KCABJ’s membership jumped by 12 with the additions of Sharon Cheers, Terez Paylor, Ramanda Hicks, Kia Breaux Randle, Jeanene Dunn, April Jackson, Toriano Porter, Alonzo Weston, Rocelyn Davis, Lewis Diuguid, Markl Johnson and DeShai Hampton.
Former KCABJ student Zachary McGowan writes to KCABJ Vice President/Print Glenn Rice with thanks for being allowed to have an essay in the special section in The Kansas City Star commemorating the birthday of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.
Also getting media attention, is former KCABJ student Katherine Williams. She was featured in a February article in the U-News at the University of Missouri-Kansas City. She runs track and is a communications major at UMKC.
Former KCABJ student Maranatha Deanna Wall writes that she graduated from college with a religious studies degree in California. She will be attending Duke Divinity School in the fall pursuing a master’s of divinity and plans to seek her doctorate.

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