Google’s Richard Gingras and Jeff Jarvis to speak at Cronkite School

The head of news and social products at Google and a leading futurist will speak at the Cronkite School as part of the Scripps Howard Journalism Entrepreneurship Institute. The event is at 4 p.m. January 3 and is open to the public.

Cronkite Theater
Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication
555 N. Central Ave.
Phoenix, AZ 85004

For more information, contact Megan Calcote at 602-496-7845.

Help Phoenix SPJ congratulate Robert Leger on the Wells Memorial Key

For his devotion to its principles and mission, Robert Leger was honored by the Society of Professional Journalists with its highest honor: the Wells Memorial Key!

The Valley of the Sun chapter of SPJ invites members to quaff a few cold brews in Robert’s honor at 6 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 9 (that’s tonight!), at Angels Trumpet Ale House, 810 N. Second St. in downtown Phoenix’s Roosevelt Row Art District.

The place, completely remodeled inside with a nice patio, just opened Sept. 15 and already is becoming a downtown “in” spot. It serves beer from 31 different taps! It has a cool, different, tasty menu. I’ve been there already and loved it. Check it out at http://www.angelstrumpetalehouse.com or call 602-252-2630.

See you there!

Learn how to interpret polling information with SPJ

As we close in on the home stretch of this election season, state and national polls will be coming hot and heavy. But what do the numbers actually mean? How do you interpret them in a way that your audience can really understand?

The Valley of the Sun Chapter, Society of Professional Journalists presents a special program with polling guru Bruce Merrill, 6 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 12 in the boardroom of the Associated Press’s Phoenix bureau, 1850 N. Central Ave. Parking is free.

The event is FREE for SPJ members and $5 for non-members, payable at the door (cash or check only). RSVPs requested by no later than noon on Sept. 12 to info@phoenixspj.org or call 602-410-1267. For more details, download the program flier.

Phoenix SPJ Seeks Volunteers for Annual Publicity Summit

Shed light on how you and your media organizations want to be pitched — and how you
don’t want to be — by participating in the 8th annual Valley Publicity Summit. Once again, the Valley of the Sun SPJ chapter seeks local journalists to volunteer a bit of their time to pay big dividends in building better relationships with public relations professionals. Information on how you can volunteer as one of the journalists giving advice — and get a FREE LUNCH — is below.

Every year since 2005, the Phoenix chapters of SPJ and PRSA have partnered to host the
annual Valley Publicity Summit, offering PR professionals the opportunity to network with peers, meet key Phoenix media and learn the best ways to pitch media for story placements. Both chapters collaborate with PRSSA and campus SPJ students to engage student professionals in assisting and attending the event. The half-day event is structured with guest speaker, breakout panel sessions, lunch, and speed pitching.

This year, for the first time, the summit will be held at the Walter Cronkite School of
Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University’s downtown campus,
555 N. Central Ave., in the First Amendment Forum on the school’s second floor. Here
are the basics:

Date/Time: Saturday, Sept. 29, 2012 from 9:30 a.m. – 3 p.m.

Parking: Free parking for the event can be found at the nearby garage structure, an ASU visitor lot to the immediate north of the Cronkite School building, and street parking.

Attendance: The event typically draws 25-30 media members and 75-100 PR professionals.

Food: Water and coffee will be available all day. A boxed lunch or buffet is served at noon.

Keynote: Former ABC 15 anchor Jodie Heisner is confirmed as the keynote speaker,
offering a 45-minute session on “Hit ‘em with your best shot” coaching on
elevator pitching.

The deal: You’d be seated on one of our media panels, arranged by type of medium, to tell of your deadlines and preferences in getting PR pitches. Then you get to critique
PR professionals who will toss you authentic, live, “speed pitches” (maximum
two minutes, OK, maybe three). If you like the pitch, take it, it’s yours to use to
develop a story! If you don’t, you get to tell the PR person why it wouldn’t work,
or wouldn’t work for you. They learn something and you get story ideas.

Panels: TV News, Community News, Business News, Magazines, TV/Radio Morning Shows, Radio News, Blogs/Online.

Get involved: Sign up today, or ask questions, by writing to Mark Scarp at phoenixspj@cox.net. You’ll be able to say you did something to improve the relationship between media and PR people. And after all, a rising tide raises all boats!

Happy hour with J groups

Come and join area journalists from several of the local media organizations, including AAJA, ALMA, NABJ, NAHJ, NAJA, NLGJA and SPJ, during a happy hour set for 5:30-7:30 p.m. Thursday, July 12, inside The District Bar at the Sheraton Downtown Phoenix, 320 N. 3rd St. There will be limited free appetizers and happy hour food and drink specials for purchase. The annual gathering is a kick-off to the upcoming g UNITY 2012 national convention in August (www.unityconvention.org), however, you don’t need to be registered for the UNITY conference in order to attend the happy hour event! To RSVP, visit the Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/events/430822840271723/.

Cool brew, hot networking at SPJ’s annual meeting/election

Our SPJ chapter bylaws require us to hold an election for 2012-13 officers, but as has been our tradition, we take that five-minute duty and wrap a couple of hours of socializing, food and beer around it.

So once again, the Valley of the Sun SPJ chapter holds its annual meeting and mostly social event at the SunUp Brewing Co., 322 E. Camelback, just a short walk from the Central Avenue/Camelback Road light rail line, 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, June 27. Here’s the map: http://sunupbrewing.com/location.html

Members and nonmembers are welcome. The chapter will pick up the first round of appetizers. Come and cool off with a variety of on-the-premises-brewed beers and meet fellow journalists from around the Valley. Somewhere among the fun, our members will be asked to cast a voice vote for next year’s president, vice president, secretary and treasurer. The official slate of candidates will be announced soon.

See you there! For more information, email info@phoenixspj.org.

Learn How to Access Public Records with David Cuillier on June 21

Join SPJ national secretary-treasurer Dave Cuillier, who is also director of the School of Journalism at the University of Arizona in Tucson, for a reprise of his 2010 Access Across America tour, 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday, June 21, in the Lecture Room at Phoenix’s Burton Barr Central Library.

During the 2010 tour, he spoke to more than 1,000 journalists on strategies for getting public records during his travels around the nation for several weeks that summer. This year, “AAA II” involves several people touring different regions, with Dave speaking to journalists and members of the public in the Southwest.

His presentation on gaining access public records that will address effective requests and how to use tactical strategies to overcome denials and exorbitant fees. Not just for journalists, this program is for anyone trying to access public records such as police reports, court documents and school records. His presentation is funded from a grant from the Sigma Delta Chi Foundation.

The Burton Barr Central Library is in downtown Phoenix at 1221 N. Central Ave., south of McDowell and north of the Central Avenue bridge over Deck Park. The Lecture Room is on the fourth floor in the southwest corner of the library. Admission is free and it’s light-rail accessible!

Registration for SPJ-ONA JournCamp Ends May 14

Don’t forget to register for the SPJ-ONA JournCamp in Phoenix! Here are a few workshops you’ll get to enjoy:

  • Entrepreneurial Journalism: Where does every journalist, from the up-and-coming student to the seasoned newsroom manager, fit in this new field? Hear from one journalist turned innovator and entrepreneur who’s been leading the charge in this expanding space. Trainer: Retha Hill, Arizona State University
  • Visual Storytelling: Visual storytelling is no longer reserved for those who just work in television. Working on the Web means journalists in all media need to find creative ways to provide information to their audiences. We’ll show you how you can use pictures to tell your story, even if none are (obviously) available. Trainer: Victoria Lim, freelancer
  • Social Media as a Reporting Tool: Social networks sprout by the minute, but which ones should you focus on, and how can you use them to find news, crowdsource information and generate leads? We’ll give you ideas for how to curate information, what you should consider in the verification process and how to publish it all, with specific case studies. Trainer: Daniel Petty, Denver Post

When:  Friday, May 18. 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Cost:  $20 for SPJ or ONA members / $40 for non-members. (Registration fee includes breakfast and lunch.)

See more programs and speaker bios at www.spj.org/spjona.asp. To register, visit www.spj.org/spjona-register.asp. Hurry, registration closes May 14!

Freedom of Information Awards Winners Announced

The Valley of the Sun Chapter, Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ) pays tribute to working journalists and others at its annual Arizona Freedom of Information Awards Reception, 12:00 p.m. Saturday, April 21 in the Monte Vista Room of the Heard Museum, 2301 N. Central Ave., in Phoenix. The keynote speaker will be Valley TV and radio icon, Pat McMahon.

Those being honored include:

  • First Amendment Award — Elvina Nawagun-Clemente, Cronkite News Service; Staff, The Arizona Republic; Matthew Casey, The Tombstone Epitaph; Hillary Davis, Arizona Daily Sun; Lauren Gambino, Tia Casañeda and Heather Billings, Cronkite News Service; Joe Ferguson, Arizona Daily Sun; Cyndy Cole, Arizona Daily Sun
  • Sunshine Award — Todd Feltus & Greg Collins, Kercsmar & Feltus PLLC, on behalf of Judicial Watch; Teri Hayt, Arizona Daily Star
  • The Phil Alvidrez Award for Excellence in Journalism — Tom Arviso Jr., Navajo Times
  • The Order of the Silver Key Society — Al Macias, KJZZ; Ken Western, The Arizona Republic; and Bill Heywood (posthumous).

Tickets are $45 for SPJ members, $50 for non-members, and $40 for students. Tickets can be purchased online via Paypal. Otherwise, mail checks to the P.O. Box address listed below by no later than Monday, April 16. Checks or cash will be accepted at the door, but RSVPs are required via e-mail by April 16. Tickets include the reception with heavy hors d’oeuvres, iced tea, coffee and dessert, and a memorable time honoring outstanding examples of the use of the First Amendment in shining a light on important public issues.

Paul J. Schatt Memorial Lecture is March 29

This year’s Paul J. Schatt Memorial Lecture featuring Steven Ginsberg, national political editor for The Washington Post will be held at 7 p.m. on Thursday, March 29, in the First Amendment Forum (second floor) of the Cronkite School. Ginsburg will share the stage with Leonard Downie Jr., former editor of the Washington Post who now teaches at the Cronkite School, for a conversation about the 2012 presidential election.

Please consider coming to hear this interesting presentation and to support Paul’s memory. Paul, a former Arizona Republic editorial pages editor who taught as a Cronkite adjunct professor for 30 years and was a longtime Valley of the Sun SPJ member, died in November 2005. The following spring, he posthumously received the chapter’s highest honor, the Phil Alvidrez Award for Excellence in Journalism.