Tucson journalists move to reactivate Southern Arizona SPJ chapter

Tucson journalists agreed June 13 to begin reactivating the Southern Arizona SPJ chapter, which faded several years ago. Dylan Smith, editor and publisher of the online news outlet Tucson Sentinel, agreed to head up the effort and is to be in contact with Society officials in Indianapolis to start the process.

Journalists interested in the chapter and what SPJ can offer media people in the southern part of the state may contact Smith at dylansmith@tucsonsentienel.com. They may also sign up for a Facebook group called “Tucson Media Pros,” through which information about the rebuilding chapter will be made available until a chapter website, www.tucsonspj.org, is fully up and running. Smith will begin contacting area journalists who attended events in January and April put on by Valley of the Sun SPJ and the First Amendment Coalition of Arizona, of which SPJ is a member.

The Southern Arizona chapter, originally chartered in the 1960s, disbanded in 1992 when several of its officers simultaneously either moved out the area or left the profession. A group of Tucson journalists from the morning Arizona Daily Star and the afternoon Tucson Citizen briefly resurrected the chapter in 2006, but it, too, went dormant after less than two years.

Learn about changes to rules regarding cameras, mobile devices in state courtrooms from free presentation Jan. 23 in Tucson

fac_logo1Your Valley of the Sun SPJ chapter is a proud founding member of the First Amendment Coalition of Arizona. The coalition is sponsoring a free presentation at the University of Arizona in Tucson on Friday morning, Jan. 23, on changes to laws regarding the use of cameras and mobile devices in Arizona state courtrooms. Click here for details!

Register for the Society of Feature Journalists Conference

SFJ, formerly the American Association of Sunday and Features Editors, is inviting Phoenix-area journalists to their annual conference. Scheduled for Aug. 24-27 at the JW Marriott Starr Pass Resort and Spa in Tuscon, the conference will help you learn Learn how to make the entire paper your section, cope with difficult bosses, and ride the wave of user-generated content. Plus, you’ll hear from a panel of journalists and others who covered the Tucson shootings last January.

The speakers lineup includes political cartoonist David Fitzsimmons; Pulitzer Prize winner Isabel Wilkerson (“The Warmth of Other Suns”); chef Beau MacMillan (“Iron Chef America”); Arizona State University prof Retha Hill, queen of mobile apps; and writing coach Jack Hart.

Registration is $300 for SFJ members, $475 for nonmembers. (After July 29, add $25.) The daily conference rate is $75. Book at Starr Pass by Aug. 3 for the special rate of $92 per night. Register at http://featuresjournalism.org/conference/registration.

Questions? Contact Merrilee Cox at merrileesfj@gmail.com or301-314-2631.