GSPA Spring workshop and awards

Join GSPA and its members from across the state in celebrating the best in high school journalism and the 90th anniversary of the GSPA at the 2018 GSPA Spring Awards.The event will be held at the University of Georgia Center for Continuing Education & Hotel on Tuesday, April 17.

This year’s event combines favorite elements from awards celebrations over the years.  It will begin with a morning conference focused on professional development from 9 a.m. to 11:30 a.m., and will conclude with a banquet-style awards luncheon, catered by The Georgia Center, starting at noon. Professional dress is suggested.

Please make your reservations by March 27. We hope you’ll join us for this special day honoring all of your hard work and a major milestone for GSPA!

Registration will be open from Feb. 1 to March 27. Attendance is free for advisers and $25 per student.

Grady College holds memorial tribute to Don Carter, commemorates Endowment for Journalism Excellence

Grady College faculty, alumni and friends celebrated a memorial tribute to alumnus Don Carter (ABJ ’38) and commemorated the Don E. Carter and Carolyn McKenzie Carter Endowment for Journalism Excellence Oct. 12, 2017, in the Peyton Anderson Forum.

“Today we are privileged to remember Don and gather with people who will testify to his hope for journalism and for the students who will follow him at Grady College,” said Dean Charles Davis.

(l.-rt.) Kent Middleton and Terry Readdick reminisce about their friend, Don Carter.

Kent Middleton, professor emeritus of journalism and friend of the Carters, spoke about Don’s hopes for journalism’s enduring values.

“For Don, excellent journalism was simple. It was truthful, timely information delivered by smart, curious reporters in clear sentences,” said Middleton. “He reminded students and board members regularly about the importance of getting the story right, naming sources and explaining the importance of journalism to the community.”

Continued Middleton: “Don trusted the Grady College to employ his and Carolyn’s gifts to perpetuate factual, ethical and fair journalism. And, of course, there’s never been a time when the public has needed that kind of journalism more.”

Janice Hume shares the vision and plans for the Carter Endowment for Journalism Excellence.

Janice Hume, head of the Department of Journalism and Carolyn McKenzie Carter and Don E. Carter Chair for Journalism Excellence, discussed the vision and plans for the Endowment for Journalism Excellence.

“Our mission is to use this transformative gift to pass those values along to our students and to strengthen our industries,” Hume said.

The Carter gifts have been used to establish a course in journalism credibility, fund faculty research, support an intern at The Brunswick News—Don Carter’s hometown newspaper, launch a “Best Summer Stories” student contest, fund student travel for training and networking, and help to send students to cover the Paralympic Games in Rio, with much more to come, she said.

Terry Readdick, another longtime friend of the Carters, shared some of his fondest memories that illustrated the couple’s shared sense of humor and zest for life.

“(Don) and Carolyn loved life, more than anybody I think I’ve ever met,” Readdick said. “I discovered they traveled to every continent. They traveled to all but a handful of countries…they had so many friends and they did so many things.”

Among those in attendance at the memorial tribute were members of the Grady Board of Trust. Member Jim Zachary devoted a column in the Oct. 15 issue of The Valdosta Daily times to Carter, which he titled “Walking in the shadow of journalism greatness“. The piece is published here with permission.

Don Carter was a truth teller.

He died at the age of 99 and was still telling the truth right up until his death.

He was a journalist.

In fact, Carter was a journalist’s journalist.

At the Grady Board of Trust meeting held on the campus of the Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Georgia Thursday, we listened to stories about Carter and his love of Grady and for journalism.

A Grady grad, Carter found himself at The Atlanta Journal in the early 1940s and that is how he found the other love of his life, Carolyn McKenzie, who competed with him for coverage while she was reporting for the Atlanta Constitution.

Their rivalry was more than friendly, it became a lifelong love story, and they were married for more than 60 years.

Don was always — and first and foremost — a reporter.

By the end of his illustrious newspaper career, he was vice president of news for Knight-Ridder.

For many years, he sat on the board of directors of The Red & Black newspaper that serves the University of Georgia campus.

As chairman of the board that Carter shaped for so many years, it is impossible not to feel the weight of his shadow and to be humbled by it.

Don Carter is newspaper royalty.

When he spoke, people listened.

Carter believed in the importance of factual and unbiased reporting.

He thought it was absolutely essential that hard news reporting and editorials be clearly separated.

He died at his beloved home on Sea Island and left behind an incredible legacy and large endowment for Grady College and the educating of future journalists.

The Atlanta Journal Constitution quoted President Jimmy Carter at the time of Don Carter’s death, “Rosalynn and I mourn the loss of my cousin and lifelong friend Don Carter. Don and I grew up together in Plains, and he supported me throughout my political career. He will be remembered not only as a superb journalist and newspaper executive, but as an advocate for the important role that journalists play in our democracy.”

Newspapers have a rich tradition as the Fourth Estate, providing a check on government while serving as a public watchdog.

That important role in democracy depends on journalistic integrity.

Journalistic integrity depends on accuracy in reporting, naming sources, correcting mistakes and clearly distinguishing between news and editorials.

Don Carter believed news reporting was about telling readers who, what, when, where, why and sometimes how and not about telling readers what to think.

Opinions are for opinion pages.

News pages are for news — for truth telling — the thing that Don Carter did best.

See more photos from the tribute on the UGA Grady Flickr account.

Three journalism students awarded for ‘Best Summer Stories’

For standout reporting during their summer internships, three Grady College journalism students have been named winners of the 2017 “Best Summer Stories” contest.

Mauli Desai, Nathan Harris and McGee Nall each will be awarded a $250 prize.

“Grady Journalism students really shine during their summer internships,” said Janice Hume, head of the Department of Journalism. “Their bosses rave about their talent, smarts and work ethic. Mauli, McGee and Nathan did exemplary work and came out on top in a tough competition this year. We are proud of them.”

Desai spent the summer at The UB Post newspaper in Mongolia. She authored pieces on topics ranging from her experience with camel riding in the Gobi Desert to highlights of the capital city of Ulaanbaatar to a profile piece on a female Mongolian entrepreneur.

“The ability to write about a country, the people, the culture and their way of life is the greatest part about being a journalist,” Desai said. “It was such a thrilling and humbling experience. Also, this was a great way to learn about newsrooms, storytelling and journalism practices across the world.”

Harris covered Henry County for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, reporting on issues such as a debate over a Confederate Flag, a school board rescinding an offer to a superintendent candidate and an examination of the new campus carry law using data journalism.

“Preparing to cover the county, I harked back to what I’ve learned from Grady classes about news gathering and government coverage,” said Harris. “I started by attending county commissioner and city council meetings to get a sense of what was happening in the county. I subscribed to small local papers and checked them regularly, subscribed to social media accounts and established contacts with city and county officials.

“I really enjoyed my internship at The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, taking my skills from Grady and writing for a large metropolitan audience,” he added. “It was exciting, stressful and a bit scary, but thanks to Grady, I felt prepared.”

Writing for Runner’s World Magazine in Emmaus, Pennsylvania., Nall covered many sides of the sport. One of her stories documented the journey of an athlete who competed in the Ironman after recovering from a brain injury.

“Hearing inspiring tales of endurance and perseverance, especially through a sport I love so much, was an unforgettable experience,” Nall said. “My internship not only impacted me as a journalist, but as a person.”

This is the third year that the Journalism Department has held the contest.

Grady students recognized as 2017 Cox-SABEW Fellows

Six Grady College students were recognized in New York City during the fall conference of the Society of American Business Editors and Writers (SABEW) through a fellowship organized and sponsored by the college’s Cox Institute for Journalism Innovation, Management and Leadership.

The students recognized as Cox-SABEW Fellows for 2017 were: Denver Ellison, Lisa Fu, Zachary Hansen, Reann Huber, Mollie Simon and Alex Soderstrom. The conference was held at the City University of New York on October 12 and 13.

This Cox-SABEW Fellowship was created to honor students who have taken the initiative to engage in business journalism through class assignments, student media and professional internships, explained Dr. Keith Herndon, director of the Cox Institute. This year’s group marked the fifth year of the partnership with SABEW, which was created in 2013 and has included 20 students to date.

“I’m incredibly thankful for the opportunity being selected as a Cox-SABEW Fellow has given me,” said Soderstrom. “After being introduced to business reporting during my summer internship at the Atlanta Business Chronicle, the SABEW conference has allowed me to delve even further into the world of business journalism.”

Fu, who interned at Fortune magazine, called the Fellowship “a fantastic opportunity for me to network, learn and to explore the field of business journalism with my peers.” Simon, who interned in business news at NPR, said the Fellowship extended her training in an important aspect of news. “Business journalism cuts across so many fields that I know it will touch any topic I have the opportunity to cover in the future,” she said.

In addition to attending the conference, the Cox-SABEW Fellows met with working reporters and editors in the newsrooms of Fortune magazine, Bloomberg and the Wall Street Journal. They also networked with Grady alumni and supporters currently working in business news and other news media organizations.

Grady Sports Media student wins Associated Press Sports Editors Student Sports Journalism Contest

For her powerful stories chronicling the lives of athletes after paralyzing injuries and the integration of Georgia football, among others, rising senior Emily Giambalvo has won the inaugural Associated Press Sports Editors Student Sports Journalism Contest.

“Emily Giambalvo will forever stand as the first winner of the APSE Student Sports Journalism Contest, which reflects well on her and on Grady College and its program,” said Tommy Deas, president of the Associated Press Sports Editors. “Emily’s work was judged against quality entries from various schools across the country and found to be the best. APSE is happy to have given her the platform to receive recognition for her work.”

Each contest entry, reviewed by a group of eight judges, consisted of a feature, breaking news, enterprise, multimedia or video and a wild-card entry. Giambalvo’s winning portfolio included:

One of the judges, Reid Laymance, deputy sports editor at the Houston Chronicle, noted two things that stood out to him about Emily’s work.

“The story on the first African-American players at Georgia was very impressive,” Laymance wrote in an email. “First, it was a good idea, although one that most likely had been done before. But the writing and the organization of the story made it feel very fresh, even [though] I knew their tale. Also, the variety of sources both past and present gave it excellent texture. And while I was judging it primarily on writing, the photos that Emily had of the key figures gave it an extra special touch.

“I also thought the multi-media presentation on recruiting in the state of Georgia was fun, informative and easy to look at. Something all of us need to do more of,” he added.

“It is satisfying to be able to quickly pause and feel proud of some of the stories I’ve written in the last year, but the award also motivates me to continue to challenge myself as a writer and get better.”

–Emily Giambalvo

Giambalvo, who is currently interning at The Seattle Times, will receive a plaque and be recognized at the 2017 APSE Summer Conference in New Orleans June 26-29.

“Winning this award was incredibly exciting, and I am honored to be included in that group of student journalists,” Giambalvo said. “It is satisfying to be able to quickly pause and feel proud of some of the stories I’ve written in the last year, but the award also motivates me to continue to challenge myself as a writer and get better. There have been many editors and professors who have invested time into helping me grow as a journalist, so I hope this is gratifying for them as well.”

One of those professors is Vicki Michaelis, John Huland Carmical Chair in Sports Journalism & Society at Grady College and director of the Grady Sports Media program.

“The Associated Press Sports Editors awards are the gold standard in sports journalism,” said Michaelis. “We’re extremely proud of Emily for winning this, competing against the best of the nation’s best. It’s especially fitting that she was recognized for a portfolio of her work, because she strives for excellence in all she does and continually raises the bar.”

The Grady Sports Media program and the guidance of Michaelis and Welch Suggs, associate director of the program, have been essential to her development, according to Giambalvo. But it was her introduction to The Red & Black, the independent student media organization serving the UGA and Athens communities, which sparked in her an initial passion for journalism.

“I have been working at The Red & Black since the first week of my freshman year, and before that, I had never been introduced to journalism. I’m fairly confident I had never even said the word ‘journalism’ until I came to UGA,” Giambalvo joked. “The Red & Black has turned that kid, one whose hands shook when she interviewed someone for the first time, into someone who is embracing the joys and challenges of being a sports writer. I am indebted to the editors who invested in me, and I am endlessly grateful for the talented, hard-working friends who push me to get better every day.”

Rebecca Burns, publisher and editorial adviser at The Red & Black, described Giambalvo as “a tenacious reporter and thoughtful wordsmith.”

“All of us at The Red & Black are so proud of her and so pleased that we published her impressive body of work. But Emily’s achievement extends far beyond individual awards,” Burns said. “As a sports editor at The Red & Black, she has influenced, coached and mentored dozens of her fellow students. The Red & Black has covered Georgia sports since our first issue in 1893, and Emily adds to a legacy of powerhouse sports coverage.”

Civil rights leader to speak about 190th anniversary of the Black Press

To mark the 190th anniversary of the Black Press, Grady College will host a lecture by Benjamin F. Chavis Jr, president and CEO of the National Newspaper Publishers Association (NNPA).  “190 Years and Counting: Why the Black Press Still Matters” takes place April 3 at 11:15 a.m. in Studio 100.

“I can’t think of a better person to help us celebrate the 190th birthday of the Black press,” said Janice Hume, head of the Department of Journalism. “Dr. Chavis has been a strong civil rights leader as well as an internationally syndicated columnist and author. He is in a unique position to teach our students not only the history, but the importance of a strong African-American press.”

“Celebrating the 190th anniversary of the Black Press is so important, especially in today’s political climate,” added Nsenga Burton, academic professional in the Journalism Department and co-advisor of the UGA chapter of the National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ). “Dr. Chavis has been at the forefront of elevating Black voices in the press. We’re excited to have him for this momentous occasion.”

In addition to his role at the NNPA, Chavis currently is the senior strategic advisor for the Diamond Empowerment Fund that he co-founded with Russell Simmons and leaders of the global jewelry and diamond industry in 2007. Chavis was elected in 2013 to the National Board of the National Association for Equal Opportunity in Higher Education. He is also the former president, CEO and co-founder with Russell Simmons of the Hip-Hop Summit Action Network, the world’s largest coalition of hip-hop artists and recording industry executives.

Chavis began his career in 1963 as a statewide youth coordinator in NC for the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., and the Southern Christian Leadership Conference. In 1970, Chavis was appointed Southern Regional Program Director of the 1.7 million member United Church of Christ Commission for Racial Justice (UCC-CRJ) and by 1985 was named the Executive Director and CEO of the UCC-CRJ.  In 1988, Chavis was elected vice president of the National Council of Churches of the USA.

In 1993 and 1994 Dr. Chavis served as the executive director and CEO of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People and remains an active supporter of the NAACP.  In 1995, he was the national director and organizer of the Million Man March.  From 1995 to 1997 Chavis was the executive director and CEO of the National African American Leadership Summit.

Chavis received a bachelor of arts in chemistry from University of North Carolina; the master of divinity from Duke University and a doctor of ministry from Howard University. Chavis has also completed course requirements for the doctor of philosophy in systematic theology from Union Theological Seminary. He is an ordained minister in the United Church of Christ.

Following the April 3 lecture, which is free and open to the public, birthday cake will be served.

The event is co-sponsored by the Department of Journalism and the UGA NABJ.

Training initiative on drone journalism hosts first workshop at Grady College

Grady College has been selected to be the first site for an innovative new drone journalism program sponsored by The Poynter Institute, Google News Lab, Drone Journalism Lab at the University of Nebraska, National Press Photographers Association and DJI.

The hands-on workshop and online teaching will train journalists in using drones, or unmanned aerial systems, for their news coverage. The Grady College workshop is scheduled for March 17-19.

The workshops will offer training on safe drone operations as well as information that drone pilots need to study for the Federal Aviation Administration’s new Part 107 Drone Pilot’s Certificate. In addition, the three-day workshops will focus on the legal and ethical issues of drone journalism, community best practices and coordinated operations in a breaking news environment, as well as explore ways drone photography can be used in innovative storytelling.

As a certified drone pilot myself, I know how difficult the exam can be for people who have no other pilot training,” said The Poynter Institute’s Al Tompkins, who is organizing the workshops. “Our goal is not to make you ‘test-ready’ but to show you what will be on the exam and to give you the fundamental knowledge you will need to study for the test.”

“We’re dedicated to supporting journalists’ experimentation with new technology,” said Erica Anderson of Google News Lab. “Drones present an opportunity for journalists to tell stories in visually rich and immersive ways, but there are still many open questions on how to apply them safely, ethically and creatively for news reporting. We couldn’t be more pleased to partner with The Poynter Institute on the drone journalism program to help tackle these challenges.”

Additional online training will be available later this year via Poynter’s e-learning platform, News University.

Drones are purpose-built context machines. They can, in less time and at vastly reduced costs, give a viewer an understanding of the scale and scope of a story unlike anything else journalists have in the toolbox,” said the Drone Journalism Lab’s Matt Waite, who has become a leading voice for drone journalism. “Just getting a drone straight up 100 feet in the air has the power to change our understanding of how big, how far, how wide, how massive something is. And it can be done safely and for very little cost.”

The workshops also will include NPPA’s legal counsel Mickey H. Osterreicher, who has worked for years speaking on behalf of journalists as the federal government drafted regulations for where and when drone journalists could fly.

“NPPA has been at the forefront in advocating for the use of drones for newsgathering. With that opportunity comes an inherent role of operating them in a legal, safe and responsible manner,” Osterreicher said.  The legal landscape is especially complex because state and local governments increasingly are imposing their own restrictions on drone flights.

NPPA headquarters are at Grady College.

The program also will feature hands-on introductory flight training sponsored by DJI, the global leader in drone technology and 2016 winner of NPPA’s Lemen award for technology innovation in photojournalism.  “We are thrilled to join with Poynter to empower journalists with state-of-the-art technology that inspires innovative storytelling,” said DJI policy lead Jon Resnick.

In addition to the March workshop at Grady College, three other universities are serving as hosts and partners for these workshops: Syracuse University Newhouse School of Public Communications, April 21-23; University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Journalism and Mass Communication, June 16-18; and the University of Oregon School of Journalism and Communication in Portland, Aug. 18-20.

In addition, the Google News Lab will support a limited number of travel scholarships for members of the National Association of Black Journalists, the National Association of Hispanic Journalists, the Asian American Journalists Association, Native American Journalists Association and NLGJA, the Association of LGBTQ journalists.

Participation at each hands-on workshop will be limited to the first 60 people to register. Workshop details are available at