Aug. 30, 2013  

Chapter Wins big at National Convention

By: Lynn Walsh

The annual Society of Professional Journalists convention, Excellence in Journalism, is now a wrap and the SPJ South Florida Pro Chapter walked away with some bragging rights.

The chapter received three Circle of Excellence Awards for the Large Chapter category:

  • First amendment
  • Diversity
  • Campus Relations and Scholarship Activity

The awards recognize SPJ chapters across the country for outstanding work in different areas.

This year the South Florida chapter launched their Shine On blog series—a Q&A with the Florida First Amendment Foundation answering public information and open government questions. They also feature weekly Q&As with prominent local journalists.

The chapter also put on several diversity events, including a diversity mixer and organizing a journalism conference with the National Association of Hispanic Journalists (NAHJ), the first partnership of its kind between NAHJ and SPJ.

SPJ South Florida’s Executive Vice President, Brandon Ballenger, was honored by outgoing SPJ President Sonny Albarado at the Installation Banquet. Ballenger was awarded with a President’s Award for his contribution and recommendations on the organizations social media and communications plan.

SPJ South Florida is also pleased to announce that Michael Koretzky was re-elected as the Region 3 Director. He ran unopposed in the this year’s election. Koretzky, is a former chapter president.

Koretzky’s assistant director, Lindsey Cook, was elected to the SPJ National Board as well. She will serve as one of two student directors.

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