The NABJ Roundup


NABJ Newsletter

The NABJ Roundup

NABJ’s Monthly Newsletter


Volume 1, Edition 1

Feb. 22, 2020


Story 1

Published on: 2/22/20


Category: The President’s Corner


Title: 2020 is Off to a Great Start!


Dear NABJ:


The year 2020 is off to a great start thanks to your various contributions and involvement!


On Feb. 14-15, we held our annual “NABJ Presents: The Basics Bootcamp,” providing training, tips and tools for hundreds of attendees. The event was held at Paul Quinn College in Dallas, Texas, and included dozens of sessions with expert trainers and influential speakers like Kelley Carter, Roy Wood Jr. and Judge Tammy Kemp. Hats off to event organizer and VP-Print Marlon Walker, our Board members, planning team members, staff and all of the trainers (including some of our Founders) who helped to make the event a success. 


I was proud to spend time with our attendees and flew in from Chicago to facilitate an intimate training session on broadcast writing. It is important to me to engage with our members at every level. You can read more about all the many offerings of “The Basics” in this edition. Learn more about our upcoming Millennial Media Summit in New York on March 7 in the “Jobs & Training Opportunities” section. I am also happy to report that we will host conferences in all four regions this spring. More information can be found at and in this newsletter.


Since the start of the new year, we have been hard at work in our commitment to providing you with the services and resources necessary to help you navigate today’s media landscape and work effectively at the chapter level. And that commitment is highlighted by the Board’s focus on ensuring that it is also trained to operate at the most productive level possible. During our January Board meeting in Birmingham, we participated in various training modules throughout the weekend focused on effective engagement, goal setting, teamwork, accountability and more. We also took time to brainstorm about how to further NABJ’s impact as an advocacy, educational and career advancement organization. I am proud to say that we have already hit the ground running with finding unique ways to bring more training and support to our members.


We have already held the following webinars thus far in 2020 thanks to the support of our regional directors and task force chairs: 

  • Jan. 20 – Doing the Most: How Chapters Can Maximize Productivity When Help Falls Short 
  • Jan. 16 – Guide to Finding an Awesome NABJ Mentor (and Being One)
  • Feb. 5 – Pay & Perks: How to Negotiate Salary & Beyond 
  • Feb. 19 – “PeakMetrics: How Media Monitoring Software Can Help You Do Your Job Better” 

We will host additional webinars in the coming days and weeks, including: “Rules Review: A Refresher on Parliamentary Procedures & Bylaws,” “Longform Magazine Writing 101” and “The Do’s and Don’ts of Reporting and Copy Editing.” You can learn more about them in this issue or register at


Thank you to all of our Board representatives, Founders, members and friends who joined me last month in Washington, D.C., for the United States Postal Service’s unveiling of the Forever Stamp for our beloved member Gwen Ifill. I was honored to have the opportunity to speak about what Gwen meant to us. The event was breathtaking and inspired all of us to continue carrying out NABJ’s great mission and our work as journalists, journalism educators and communicators. 


I also want to thank all members and chapters who helped us to complete our Job Satisfaction Survey last month. We will come back to you soon with the results of our survey as we have collected important data that can help drive change in our industry. 


I am thrilled to share that thanks to the contributions of our members and supporters we were able to raise a combined total of more than $10,000 to support our new Help Members Excel Fund (for hardships) and scholarships and training, as a result of our Giving Tuesday and year-end campaign. It’s not too late to donate. Look for opportunities on our website and registration forms or visit this link.


It has been more than six months since you gave me the honor of serving as your President. I am grateful that you have entrusted me with leading our great organization. I want to ensure you that I will continue to work hard to deliver on my promises and address your needs and concerns. Here are just some of the additional things we have been able to accomplish since I took office in August 2019.


  • Launched the NABJ Editor Database to connect members with hiring managers
  • Launched the Each One Reach One Membership Drive, which also offers convention discounts for members who refer friends
  • Launched a new scholarship with Medill/Reuters and an internship with the NFL/Sports Task Force
  • Enhanced the Salute to Excellence Awards recognition process
  • Launched #NABJAdvocacy Day, during which Board members advocate at local newsrooms, stations and media companies as a part of our meetings
  • Launched the NABJ Diversity Institute in conjunction with Executive Director Drew Berry and Board input
  • Renewed our focus on NABJ’s Career Center and advocating for press freedom
  • Enhanced how we use data collection to inform advocacy and training
  • Launched the President’s Challenge to put money back into our chapters
  • Launched “Chapter Chats” to stay connected to our chapters
  • Created new formats for committee and task force leadership teams to diversify gender, age and location 
  • Increased webinar offerings to provide more training opportunities 
  • Commissioned a Media Entrepreneurship Survey that we will release in the coming weeks, which will inform the development of entrepreneurship programming


While we’ve got so much more work to do, I am excited about what we have accomplished and what’s in store for the future. Please enjoy this first issue of our new monthly newsletter “The NABJ Roundup!” Thanks to editor Kathy Chaney and her team for helping to bring it to life.



Yours in Service, 

Dorothy Tucker, NABJ President


Story 2 

Published on: 2/22/20


Category: NABJ History 


Title:  Fact of the Month from Founder Allison Davis


Did You Know? 

NABJ’s first national conference was convened the weekend of October 2, 1976 at Texas Southern University in Houston, Texas. Approximately 75 Black journalists attended.



Story 3

Published on: 2/22/20


Category: Ask NABJ


Title: Ask NABJ: Q&A for Career & Industry Tips


Award-winning and veteran journalists Benét Wilson and Ernest Owens answer your questions about navigating the news/media industry. Submit Questions for next month’s issue here.


Q1:  I’ve been with my employer for a little over a year and I love it. I was contacted on LinkedIn by a few recruiters and the opportunities sound great. I’m not searching for a job, but also don’t want to ignore the options. Should I hear them out AND tell my employer I’m being courted by other outlets, or should I decline the meetings since I like where I work?


Benét: No matter how happy you are at your job, you should never turn down the opportunity to chat with potential employers, especially if they reach out to you. They may have your dream job. Even if they don’t, you still want to stay on their radar in case things change. Do NOT tell your current employer about these chats until you have a job offer in hand. There’s no reason to make your current employer panic.


Ernest: First off, NEVER tell your employer you’re talking to anyone else unless you’re planning on leaving or up for a competitive contract renewal. There is nothing wrong with having a conversation with other employers that may one day hire you in the future — just be sure to inform them that you’re not seeking current job openings right now, but interested in learning more about their company. This is called networking. 

Q2. How do I tell my editor I want to pursue freelance opportunities with national newsrooms because it wouldn’t be a conflict of interest? I’m trying to pay down my student loans and the additional money would help.


Benét: If you have a contract, check and make sure that you’re not banned from doing freelance work. If it’s not in your contract, have a discussion with your boss. First, make sure any freelance writing you’re doing doesn’t conflict with your day job. It will definitely help to discuss with your boss who you want to write for and the types of stories you hope to cover. You can even throw out using a pseudonym when you’re writing. If you’ve been given a job offer, negotiate that as part of your employment package. If your boss says no, then come up with a Plan B to make money.


Ernest: Yes, read that contract first and if you aren’t barred from outside work — go talk to your editor. If they allow it, great! If not, then clearly this isn’t the job that is paying you enough to have you exclusively, so I would encourage you to start looking elsewhere in general. 

Q3.  I’ve been applying to summer internships and have already been turned down for a few that I really wanted. Some told me I didn’t have the required experience, and I found a couple of typos in my cover letter and resume after I sent them. First, do I send a corrected resume and cover letter, along with an apology? Second, how can I appeal to them that I’m worth the investment even though I don’t meet all the requirements?


Benét: First-typos and grammar errors are deadly in a journalism resume. You can send a corrected resume and cover letter with an apology, but don’t be surprised if it doesn’t work. You only get one chance to make a good first impression. So going forward, ALWAYS have a professional (not your friends) look at your resume to catch typos and grammar before you send it out. As for appealing to them, match your skills with as many of the internship requirements as possible. Also, know that there are usually hundreds of people fighting for the same internships, so do what you can to stand out.


Ernest: Sorry to break it to you, but sending a corrected resume and cover letter AFTER being rejected is a waste of time. The company has already selected their person — and the mere fact that they are telling you why they didn’t pick you is more than a blessing right there. Rather than try to argue the case for why you should get picked for lacking their desired skill set, go invest that energy in gaining those skills instead. Cutting corners will always catch up to you, so start reading these job descriptions carefully and better articulating how the work you’re doing is relevant to those points. Otherwise, start garnering the expertise in the things you see you’re lacking in NOW. 

Q4. I’d like my student chapter to get more involved with the professional chapters in our area. What are some best approaches a student chapter should make to pro chapters for guidance?


Benét: I’m the immediate past president of the Baltimore chapter. We offer student memberships and we reach out regularly to Morgan State, Bowie State and Coppin State universities, along with the University of Maryland-College Park and invite those students to our meetings. We also hold special programming for students and have a mentorship program. You need to reach out to your professional chapter and ask to form a partnership. Attend their meetings and ask professionals to speak at your meetings. Keep the lines of communication open, because it can really benefit student members.


Ernest: As a current VP of the Philadelphia chapter, we have a few active college chapters in our area that have learned how to bridge the gap very well. My word of advice: Make yourself useful. Show up to their meetings, make your college chapter known, and see where they need help for you to offer your assistance. The face recognition will go a long way, with the help to back it up. Establishing a useful relationship will help you get what you probably really want (and need): Better networking, scholarships, and job opportunities. Don’t enter the relationship as a beggar, but a helper — and everyone loves to support a helper. 

Q5. We’ve done bake and dinner sales, car washes and parties to help fundraise for the national convention. Most of those bring in little money. We need out of the box ideas to help increase donations. Help!


Benét: You have talented people in your chapter. If you have photographers, have an event where you do headshots and charge $25 each for them. Get your video people together and offer your services for university and student events, using the proceeds to pay for the convention. If you’re in a city that has an NABJ professional chapter, consider reaching out to them for help. Ask your school or student government for funding. But whatever you do, please *please* don’t wait until the last minute to ask for funding.


Ernest: The reason why your efforts aren’t working could be because everyone is doing bake and dinner sales, car washes and parties. Look at what’s in front of you: Journalists! Reach out to media companies in your area for potential sponsorships, offer serious professional training to PR firms, and/or ask your super famous/popular media members to co-host a mixer/happy hour fundraiser for the group. Look carefully at the strengths of the members in front of you and work their various talents. I promise you, the money is looking right at you.


Story 4

Published on: 2/22/20


Category: Special Feature


Title: My #NABJBasics Experience


By Jessica Hayden

I Messenger Media, LLC


On February 14-15, the National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ) hosted the third annual NABJ Presents: The Basics Bootcamp at Paul Quinn College. It was a two-day event that brought in many different students and professionals from around the country. This event was sponsored by Paul Quinn College, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, the Dallas Morning News and I Messenger Media, LLC. 


According to Bootcamp founder and NABJ Vice President-Print Marlon Walker, the purpose of the bootcamp was to learn different skills, network and soak in all the knowledge you can from the many sessions. 


This was my first time attending the #NABJBasics Bootcamp and it really opened my eyes to what I needed to know going forward in the industry. 


The first workshop I attended was “Radio for the People.” This workshop focused on how the radio world works and the importance of making lasting impressions in any company you may join.



Jamie Goodspeed-Maxie of Radio One was very transparent with the audience about how she was able to climb up the ladder in radio. Also, the panel, which included noted psychologist and former radio host Dr. Brenda Wall and veteran broadcaster and former NABJ Vice President-Broadcast Alexis Yancey, dropped so much wisdom on the younger students and adults in the audience


The next workshop I attended was about fellowships, which are very important for all college students and professionals who’d like to enhance their careers. Fellowships teach you about advancing your skills in all areas, including social media, and you receive a monthly allowance that covers the cost of living. Plus, you receive the opportunity to get mentored by someone who is where you want to be in their career. If you have not looked into fellowships, you should start now so you can advance your skills toward your future career goals. 


Next, I went to “Finding Stories,” where I was able to learn some new methods to find different ways to develop and share a story. This event had at least 20 students in the room because most of them were very interested in being in broadcasting. I learned that sometimes it may be hard to get the true facts when people do not want to talk about the subject because of their beliefs or other reasons, but you have to be the one to convince them to trust you by your actions and hopefully overtime they may open up to you. This made so much sense because if people do not see you in the community they will not be able to take you as a truthful source.


Speaking of sources, “Accuracy in the Digital Age,” focused on how to properly use anything you do or receive the right way. Constantly fact checking is very important because of the countless mistakes that you can make if you do not get the information correct. Inaccurate information can put your company in a bad situation, which could get you fired or facing litigation. The panelists talked about what type of sources you can trust versus who you cannot trust. Never post anything you did not receive permission to post because that can be a problem. Take for instance at the “Newsmakers Event “ where NABJ Secretary Cheryl Smith sat down with Judge Tammy Kemp to flush out the entire murder trial of former Dallas Police officer Amber Guyger, who shot business exec Botham Jean (Guyger said she mistakenly mistook his apartment for hers and shot who she thought was an intruder). It was amazing listening to Judge Tammy Kemp really telling her truth versus what people think they saw in her courtroom. That is why it is up to journalists to get the facts and the truth about what they see at any event or on any issue.


The “Write More Powerfully & Strategically for Public Relations in Traditional and Social Media ” workshop panelists talked about making sense of what you may put out into the universe for people to see. Always think about everything you are writing from blogging and press releases to social media posts and deliver your message clearly. They also gave examples about how the public relations business works when it comes to writing style and how to properly use hashtags to help your brand.


If you were ever looking to become an editor or manager of a multimedia business the “Building a Career Toward Editing and Managing” workshop was very key to understanding the business and served as a guide for putting your best foot forward to get there.


Overall, this event was very helpful. Students came from across the state and around the country. NABJ members and leaders were well represented including President Dorothy Tucker, Treasurer Greg Morrison, Media-Related Representative Terry Allen, some of NABJ’s Founders and veteran members. The Bootcamp provided a taste of how amazing the National Association of Black Journalists is and how much the leadership cares about the future generation’s growth. 


Make sure, if you are a student or professional, to make an effort to attend the 2020 convention in Washington, D.C., which is being held by NABJ and the National Association of Hispanic Journalists in July. It will be a life-changing experience. Learn more at

Story 5: 

Published on: 2/22/20


Category: Task Force Notes 


Title: Photo Recap of the NABJ Sports Task Force NBA All-Star Weekend Panel


Captions By: Exavier Pope

Photos By: Mark Braboy, freelance entertainment writer and photographer


  1. Participants in “NABJ Sports Task Force Presents: The State of the NBA and Sports Media” at the event’s VIP Reception:

(L-R) Panelist Ryan Baker (CBS 2 Chicago), Panelist Candace Buckner (Washington Post), Moderator Marc J. Spears (ESPN’s The Undefeated), Panelist Zora Stephenson (Fox Sports Wisconsin), Featured Panelist Kenyon Martin (Retired NBA All Star), Host Exavier B. Pope I, Esq. (, Panelist Benny Bonsu (GiveMeSport).


  1. Panelists Chicago Tribune’s Phill Thompson and CBS 2 Chicago’s Ryan Baker with moderator ESPN’s The Undefeated Marc J. Spears on the panel covering sports in Chicago.


  1. NABJ President and CBS 2 Chicago’s Dorothy Tucker gives a welcome address to attendees. 


Submit notes to


Story 6: 

Published on: 2/22/20


 Category: #NABJCongrats 


Title: Recent Member Promotions and New Job Roles

 Submit member news here.

  • Keith Woods – NPR Chief Diversity Officer
  • Mary Irby-Jones – Editor of The Clarion Ledger, Hattiesburg American
  • Alyxaundria Sanford – Social media at CBS This Morning
  • Delano Massey – Supervising producer, Crime & Justice at CNN
  • Errin Haines – Editor-at-large for The 19th
  • Deon Hampton – Investigative reporter at the Cincinnati Enquirer
  • DeAntae Prince – Sports content editor for the Chicago Tribune
  • Phil Thompson – Promoted to Blackhawks beat reporter for the Chicago Tribune
  • Adrienne Samuels Gibbs – Features Editor at Zora
  • Kyra Kyles – CEO of YR Media 
  • Wesley Lowery – Correspondent for 60 Minutes’ “60 in 6”
  • Terrence Lee – Anchor at Fox Chicago
  • Felicia Henderson – Table stakes coordinator for the Maynard Institute for Journalism Education
  • Georgette Johnson – Executive editor/general manager of the Michigan Chronicle
  • Tony Betton Jr. – Anchor/producer/reporter at WPTA
  • Alexis Mathews – 5 and 10 p.m. weekday anchor at WTAP and WOVA
  • Lee Bey – Editorial board at the Chicago Sun-Times
  • Natasha Alford – VP of digital content for theGrio
  • Alexander Pineda – Producer at CNN
  • April Morton – Lead reporter of new nightly newscast on CW50 Detroit
  • Nicole Avery Nichols – Detroit Free Press senior content editor for current affairs and entertainment
  • Sheri Lynn Stuart – Anchor/reporter WBKB 11 in Alpena, Michigan
  • Georgette Johnson – Executive editor/general manager at The Michigan Chronicle
  • Manuel Smith – Managing editor at CBS 3 Eyewitness News in Philadelphia
  • Nia Phillips – Producer at New Day on CNN
  • Katrease Stafford and Aaron Morrison joined AP’s National Race & Ethnicity team
  • Amanda Barrett – AP’s deputy managing editor
  • Trevell Anderson and Jarrett Hill – Hosts of FANTI Podcast
  • Kristen Welker – Co-host of Weekend Today
  • Richard Washington III – Assistant news director at WCNC
  • Brianna Dahlquist – Anchor  at FOX55 in FortWayne
  • Janaé Adams – Production assistant for New Orleans Saints and the Pelicans
  • John Yearwood – Politico’s deputy editor for agriculture and trade
  • Michele Norris – Washington Post Opinions contributor and consultant 
  • Leisa Richardson – Executive editor of the State Journal-Register
  • Andale Gross – AP’s head of Race & Ethnicity team
  • Seni Tienabeso, Executive producer at ABC News Live
  • Cat McKenzie – Senior producer at ABC News Live ( Breaking news, special events and breaking news updates)
  • Goldie Taylor – Chief marketing officer for Morehouse School of Medicine
  • Alan Sealls –  Chief meteorologist at WPMI-TV
  • Terrance Smith – Political desk at ABC News
  • Andrea K. McDaniels – Deputy editorial page editor for the Baltimore Sun
  • D’Ante Smith – Social media editor for the XFL
  • Skyler Henry – Washington, D.C.- based correspondent for CBS Newspath
  • Georgia Dawkins – Producer for Central Ave
  • Marcine Joseph – MMJ for ABC7 Sarasota
  • Justin Walters – Sideline reporter for CBS Sports
  • Jatrissa Wooten – MMJ for 41NBC
  • Joshua Johnson – Anchor for MSNBC
  • Zora Stephenson – Reporter for Milwaukee Bucks and Fox Sports Wisconsin
  • AJ Ross – Sideline reporter for CBS Sports


Story 7

Published on: 2/22/20


Category: Jobs & Training Opportunities


Title: Job and Training Highlights


Jobs (Click red links to apply)



Visit for the latest job and fellowship opportunities. Upload your resume to share with recruiters who will join us at #NABJNAHJ20.


Register Now for These Training Events

Visit or click the event titles below.



Story 8

Published 2/22/20


Category: Chapter Happenings


Title: Updates and News from Our Chapters


  • The Baltimore Association of Black Journalists hosted “Making Magic: Tips and Tricks of the Trade” on Feb. 22.
  • The Greater Cincinnati Association of Black Journalists was featured in the Jan. 25 edition of the Cincinnati Herald for being honored by UC Health at its Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. celebration. President Dorothy Tucker was the keynote speaker.
  • Region II adds a new chapter to the family: Welcome The Flint/Saginaw Association of Black Journalists. Follow them on Twitter: @Flint_Sag_NABJ
  • The NABJ-Los Angeles chapter hosted a panel discussion on Jan. 18 on how the AB-5 law will affect freelance journalists. According to NABJLA Vice President Jarrett Hill , AB-5 is a law in California that went into effect Jan. 1. Its intention — rooted in the ride-share industry — was centered in changing the definition of who is an employee and who isn’t. The outcome of the law as written has a significant, negative impact on freelance journalists, extremely limiting their ability to work. More information here.
  • The NABJ-Buffalo chapter added two new board members: Karys Belger-Parliamentarian, and Sheldon Anderson-Treasurer.
  • The Atlanta Association of Black Journalists swore in its new executive board: Amir Vera – President; Raisa Habersham – VP of Print; Gary Cotton – VP of Digital; Karvis Jones – VP of Broadcast; Shelitha Hurd – Treasurer; Eric Nickens Jr. – Secretary; and Craig Allen Brown – Parliamentarian.


Submit happenings to


Story 9


Category: In Memoriam 

Published: 2/22/20


Title: January/February2020 Passings


January – Longtime political cartoonist Ron Rogers

January – Former USA TODAY veteran sports writer Roscoe Nance

January – Renowned multimedia journalist Heshimu Jaramogi

February – Operations manager at 13News Byron Burney

February – Former Clarion Ledger columnist Eric Stringfellow: 

February – ABC7Chicago Reporter/Anchor Bob Petty


Submit In Memoriam information here.




Connect with The NABJ Roundup


Kathy Chaney, Editor

Media Contact:

NABJ Communications


Membership Types

An advocacy group established in 1975 in Washington, D.C., the National Association of Black Journalists (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.