Discussions about membership growth among young, working journalists and expanding programs into Fort Myers and Bonita Springs were among the important topics discussed at the November 15 NPC Board Meeting.
We talked briefly about the strong program held on November 1 featuring Mike Deeson, a board member with the First Amendment Foundation of Florida, and our own NPC member Tom Marquardt, former editor and publisher of the Capital Gazette Communications in Annapolis, Maryland. Tom began the program with an emotional and compelling recollection of his experiences being harassed about first amendment rights by a disgruntled reader, which eventually led to a deadly shooting involving five members of the newsroom staff. Mike drew on his experiences as an investigative reporter to talk about the challenges of gaining access to information that people often want to protect or hide. Both Tom and Mike provided excellent insights into the First Amendment and Florida’s Sunshine laws, and took questions.
NPC Board Members Mike Sheffield and Connie Kindsvater have developed a joint program with the Collier County Library System, offering a freelance writing and blogging workshop featuring seven experts. The event is scheduled for Saturday, December 8, and is open to the public. We explored ways to make sure people who may be interested learn about it and come to fill the auditorium at the Orange Blossom library location.
The Sizzling Summer Media Mixers were so popular, resulting in membership applications from a number of members of the media, that we plan to schedule additional mixers throughout the year—in Naples and in Fort Myers—some with a “newsmaker” speaker and others purely social.
Fundraising again was a topic of discussion. The only way to fund multiple NPC Journalism Scholarships in the years to come is to build a regular, dependable source of funds. We’ll explore ways to raise money, including grants, special events and individual appeals.
If you are interested in becoming more involved with NPC, please reach out. Your insights, experiences and talents will likely match up with one of our committees.
Members, we again invite you to take a minute to review your information in the Members section of our website and provide updated information (title, company, address, phone number, email address, etc.) to NPCBioPage@gmail.com.
Plan to join us for the NPC Annual Meeting and Young Journalist Awards program on Thursday, Dec. 13. To add to the festive nature of an annual meeting during the holidays, each guest will receive a glass of champagne and everyone will be encouraged to purchase raffle tickets for items on display, including wine baskets, signed books and restaurant gift cards. I look forward to seeing you!