Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Pro bono PR help needed

This is from our friend Rick D'Elia:

The Welcome to America Project, a local non-profit in my pro bono stable of favorite local orgs is looking for some PR help.

are trying to build up our Communications Committee and Development Committee. They both meet once per month to connect on projects and efforts. We are pushing hard for fundraising efforts now. If you know anyone, I would love to contact them.

"WTAP is seeking a local celebrity to MC the Prom this year on February 19, 2011. Do you know anyone that might be able to help us in our search?"

If anyone is interested in helping, please contact Megan and tell her Rick sent you:

Megan O’Connor

Executive Director

The Welcome to America Project

602.490.0088 x1

Monday, October 18, 2010

Republic job opening

My source on the inside passed along another job opening at the Arizona Republic. Once again, I'm not sure if they're looking for external candidates, but it's always worth a shot if you are qualified and interested...

State agencies/politics reporter Casey Newton has given his notice, effective Nov. 3, to cover technology for the business desk at the San Francisco Chronicle. Casey is a tech savvy reporter who loves the Bay Area, so we are confident he will do well there.

Interested applicants should contact State Government and Politics Editor Christina Leonard.

We’re looking for an experienced state government/politics reporter who will serve as a watchdog over state government and write about how budget cuts and policy decisions impact residents. The coverage area includes a range of topics including the state budget, politics, health and social services, environment, prisons, elections and parks.

This reporter will focus primarily on enterprise and investigative work, but he or she will have to juggle breaking news and write for multiple platforms – Page One and Valley & State,, our political blog and Twitter and Facebook. The reporter must be a team player, willing to work closely with three other reporters who cover the state Legislature and the Governor’s Office.

The ideal candidate is a self starter who has a proven track record. He or she has shown good source development and beat management in previous beats, demonstrated a devotion to watchdog journalism and displayed strong writing skills. Previous experience covering state or local government is a plus.

Qualified candidates should e-mail state government and politics editor Christina Leonard at with links to no more than six stories in the past two years, a resume, three references, and a letter explaining why we should consider you. Deadline: Oct. 29.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Covering immigration; going to Uganda

Yes, I know those sound like two wildly different concepts. But they're linked by one special person.

Our friend and photographer extraordinaire Rick D'Elia is looking for ideas for pictures concerning immigration issues. His plea is below; I hope someone out there can help him out.

Also, Rick is organizing innovative, fascinating "documentary and wildlife" photography trips to Uganda. Rick spent a year there and has some amazing stories and pictures. He's willing to share his expertise and insider knowledge with a select group of folks, and it sounds like it is going to be a real learning experience. Anyone remotely interested in a photography career should check it out. Web site and contact info is below.

Here's the criteria for his immigration coverage:

Also I am searching for some sidebar/deeper stories to photograph relating to immigration whether its immigrants who are community leaders, how immigrants legal and illegal are affected by the current climate, immigrant successes, how people deal with overcoming general challenges of being a modern-day immigrant, and other things that are not occurring to me right now. I am trying to put together a package of images for my picture agency tthat might have legs as the debate continues.

Rick D'Elia
D'Elia Photographic
The Uganda Workshop:
Website at:

Monday, August 30, 2010

Journalism Jumpstart Workshop Series

The face of journalism is evolving faster than in any other time in
history - are you prepared? Join Phoenix SPJ and the Rocky Mountain
chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences
(NATAS) in a series of six workshops designed to reinvent you and your
career direction.

The workshops are free to SPJ and NATAS members, $10 to people who
RSVP in advance and $15 at the door (cash only). Or you can purchase
all six for $50 (or if you join either group in person at any one of
the workshops you can get in all remaining workshops for free). Light
desserts and beverages will also be provided courtesy of Media Watch

The first workshop is September 8, so be sure to check out
for all the info. See you there!

Get the latest information on upcoming chapter events and activities at the Web site for the Valley of the Sun chapter of

SPJ is on Facebook:
SPJ is on Twitter:

If you haven't done so already, please add and to your address book to ensure that you receive the latest information on upcoming chapter events, tips on job openings and journalism-related activities in the Phoenix area.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

AZ Lifestyle seeks "writers"

One of our colleagues says that AZ Lifestyle magazine is looking for "writers," but I put that in quotation marks because there are a few caveats. I'm not sure any professionals would want to take this on, but if you know college students just starting out, it might be a way for them to build some bylines.

1. Pay sucks. They pay $150 for stories around 1,500 words or more. Often you must find and send your own photographs.
2. It's a fight to get paid. They are supposed to pay 30 days after publication, but you have to file an invoice and then nag and nag and nag. They no longer have an editor - you work with the publisher, Greg Tortorello.
3. All of the stories are previewed for the people interviewed in the stories prior to publication, and the advertising people are actively involved in editorial matters.

It's online at They're trying to beef up their online presence.

To reach the publisher, send an email to

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Temp PR job

From city of Glendale:

Public Relations Specialist - Temporary - Marketing Department

SALARY: $26.44 - $27.88 per hour DOQ
Open Competitive
OPENING DATE: July 26, 2010
August 6, 2010 at 5 p.m.

NOTE: This position is temporary, full-time at 40 hours per-week and does not include benefits.


  • Works with and advises the city’s executive team – Mayor/Council, City Manager and Deputy City Managers regarding strategies related to the dissemination of official city information (particularly on sensitive matters) to various publics: news media, citizens, employees, businesses and other customers.
  • Participates in the development of comprehensive strategies and approaches for marketing Glendale locally, regionally and nationally.
  • Assesses multiple city departmental marketing needs and conceptualizes, develops, implements and manages strategic communications campaigns and projects that reach, inform and involve citizens at large and/or targeted audiences.
  • Plans, develops, writes and manages production of multiple city departmental newsletters, brochures, flyers and other materials prepared for both internal and external audiences.
  • Develops, implements and manages citywide special events and tourism programs, including supervision of staff and budgets.
  • Participates in the development, implementation and analysis of market research related to the value and effectiveness of city services and programs.
  • Writes and produces cable television programs and training and promotional videos for target markets.
  • Researches and writes news releases, regional and national awards applications and articles for professional journals and publications on behalf of the Mayor/Council and city management.
  • Participates in establishing public relations goals and objectives for client departments, including the production of posters, brochures, flyers and other materials prepared for both internal and external audiences.
  • Serves as liaison to the media in handling inquiries, writing news releases and pro-actively “pitching” stories.
  • Develops and maintains positive relationships with the news media
  • Writes monthly citizen and employee newsletter.
  • Assists the Marketing/Communications Manager in crisis communications and issues management.
  • Assists the Marketing/Communications Manager is developing and implementing marketing campaigns for city services and programs (writing brochures, etc),
  • Assists the Marketing/Communications Manager in developing and implementing large projects and campaigns, and in providing communications services to city departments, the City Manager’s Office and the Mayor and Council.
  • Performs other related duties as assigned.

MINIMUM QUALIFICATIONS: Bachelor's degree in journalism, marketing, public relations or a related field and four years experience in marketing or public relations. Preference will be given to candidates with previous government experience. Any equivalent combination of training and experience that provides the required knowledge, skills, and abilities, is qualifying.

SPECIAL REQUIREMENTS: Requires a valid Arizona driver’s license upon hire.

SELECTION PROCESS: Applications will be screened for the minimum qualifications and special requirements. Applicants meeting the minimum qualifications and special requirements will be placed on an eligibility list. Eligibility lists are active for up to six months. Human Resources reserves the right to terminate or extend the life of an eligibility list at any time. The hiring department will contact those candidates they wish to test and/or interview. DURING THE SELECTION PROCESS, ANY APPLICANT REQUIRING ACCOMMODATION FOR A DISABILITY SHOULD ADVISE THE HUMAN RESOURCES DEPARTMENT.

All candidates are subject to an extensive background check, including but not limited to, Department of Public Safety and FBI background investigations. Applicants must be truthful and accurate and avoid providing inconsistent information, incorrect dates, partial or incomplete information when completing the application and any supplemental forms. Falsifying or omitting information during any stage of the selection process, may make you ineligible for consideration or continued City employment.

PREFERENCE POINTS: If you are eligible for Employment Preference Points under Arizona Revised Statute 38-492, please complete an Employment Preference Point Form, available in Human Resources, and submit with your application.


Employment Documents

Monday, July 26, 2010

3 job openings at The Arizona Republic

I don't know if all of these are open to outside candidates, but it certainly can't hurt to try if you're interested. They look like meaty beats for dedicated news hounds.

Remember, e-mails are

Lily Leung is leaving The Republic after three years in the Arrowhead newsroom to work on the newly formed watchdog team at the San Diego Union Tribune. Lily covered Surprise public safety and most recently,Surprise City Hall, making watchdog coverage her hallmark for the Surprise Republic, The Arizona Republic and An inaugural member of the watchdog committee, Lily also tweets and blogs daily for SurpriseInsider, a must-read for breaking news about the city and politics. Please wish Lily well in her new endeavors. Her last day with us is Aug. 4.

If you’re interested in the Surprise City Hall opening, we’re looking for a reporter with strong watchdog, enterprise and storytelling skills. Surprise has grown from 10,000 to more than 100,000 residents in little more than a decade. That rapid growth has led to issues tantalizing to journalists: a fired city manager, a police chief on leave, and two major financial missteps. The City Hall reporter must show initiative in building sources and aggressively pursue public records to get beneath the surface of meeting coverage and official public statements. The ability to report and write breaking news and enterprise for the Surprise Republic, azcentral, Valley & State and Page One is critical. You must be willing to blog daily and tweet regularly. Multimedia training will be provided. This position reports to West Valley Community Editor Venita James.

We also are adding another reporter to our Maricopa County team. We’re looking for an aggressive reporter with demonstrated ability to quickly turn sophisticated enterprise and explanatory pieces. This journalist will help cover the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors and the dozens of departments within the county. The reporter will work closely with county investigative reporter Yvonne Wingett to develop this beat. This reporter will be responsible for coverage areas important to the county, which may include the budget, health, environmental services, homeless issues, parks, animal control, property taxes and elections. This reporter must be able to multitask. He or she will have to juggle long-range stories with breaking news, and write for multiple platforms – Page One and Valley & State,, our political blog and Twitter and Facebook. The reporter must be a team player, willing to work closely with other reporters who cover Maricopa County, the Sheriff's Office and the County Attorney's Office. The ideal candidate is a self-starter who has a proven track record of excellent beat management and source development, demonstrated a devotion to watchdog journalism and displayed strong writing skills. Previous experience covering state or local government is a plus. Maricopa County, the fourth-largest county in the United States based on population, has about 13,000 employees. This position reports to State and County Editor Christina Leonard.

In addition, we are going to add a Phoenix public safety position. This is more than a police beat, though the primary agencies being covered are Phoenix police and fire departments. The job entails covering major crimes, fires, disasters in Phoenix for the Metro desk, but also identifying and writing about important crime and public safety trends in Phoenix, examining public policy developments that affect public safety, probing administrative and bureaucratic problems within the public-safety agencies, keeping a finger on the pulse of city residents as it relates to crime and public safety concerns, and working closely with public safety reporters in the community newsrooms on stories with Valleywide implications. A key requirement for this position is the ability to write big-picture stories quickly and succinctly and a nose for watchdog coverage. Experience doing data-driven analysis is a plus. This position reports to Metro night editor Vinton Supplee. Hours will be roughly 10 am - 6 pm M-F.

If you’re interested in any of these positions, notify Local News Center Director Cherrill Crosby by the end of day, Monday, Aug. 2, with links to no more than eight of your best stories in the past two years and a letter explaining why you should be considered and what you would bring to the job.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

ASU Art Museum PR opening


Tempe, AZ


SEARCH Job ID number: 24722

Posted Rate of Pay: $32,000 - $34,000 per year; DOE

Duties and Responsibilities

The ASU Art Museum is offering an exciting and dynamic position for an innovative and highly talented individual working in marketing and publicity at the ASU Art Museum. The Specialist will work to publicize and market our exhibitions and programs to broad audiences on and off campus, and to brand the Museum's identity in the media for more effective local and national recognition. Job responsibilities will include submitting ongoing, free listings in local and national publications; writing, editing and distributing all press and marketing materials; overseeing the website and social networking sites, and pursuing new approaches in this area; cultivating strong relationships with both local and national arts writers and devising innovative story ideas to pitch to art reporters; copy editing publications and reviewing publication design. The Specialist is the only dedicated staff at the Museum for press and marketing activities, but has the opportunity to hire a work study student and mentor interns. The Specialist will also work closely with the communications staff in the Institute and University. The Specialist will be an integral part of the Museum's team to build a vital gathering place for campus and community audiences around art and ideas.

DAYS AND SCHEDULE: Monday-Friday 8:00AM-5:00PM, to include some weekends and evenings.

Minimum Qualifications

Bachelor's degree in a field appropriate to the area of assignment and three (3) years of related experience; OR, Seven (7) years of related experience; OR, Any equivalent combination of experience and/or education from which comparable knowledge, skills and abilities have been achieved.

Desired Qualifications

Demonstrated experience in: A high level of proficiency in writing (grammar, editing and proofreading) including writing for the web, business correspondence, feature articles and news/PR writing; handling multiple tasks and meeting deadlines. Experience working in a team environment; using effective verbal and written communication skills; employing strong organizational skills; attention to detail; cold calling experience. Bilingual fluent Spanish/English.

Department Statement/Gen Info

The Arizona State University Art Museum is a unit of the Herberger Institute of Design and the Arts and supports the educational goals of the College and University while being a significant cultural resource for the State. The Museum is a leader in the state in presenting contemporary art exhibitions in all media by emerging and established artists from Arizona and the world. We bring outstanding contemporary exhibitions which receive national and international attention to Phoenix and present them in innovative ways for our ASU students and Museum visitors. The ASU Art Museum is a gathering place for people to interact, explore an artist's vision and process, and to discuss our contemporary world.

Background Check Statement

ASU conducts pre-employment screening for all positions which includes a criminal background check, verification of work history, academic credentials, licenses, and certifications.

Standard Statement

Arizona State University is a new model for American higher education, an unprecedented combination of academic excellence, entrepreneurial energy and broad access. This New American University is a single, unified institution comprising four differentiated campuses positively impacting the economic, social, cultural and environmental health of the communities it serves. Its research is inspired by real world application blurring the boundaries that traditionally separate academic disciplines. ASU serves more than 67,000 students in metropolitan Phoenix, Arizona, the nation's fifth largest city. ASU champions intellectual and cultural diversity, and welcomes students from all fifty states and more than one hundred nations across the globe.

Arizona State University is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action employer.

Close Date

July 29, 2010

Instructions to Apply

Application deadline is 11:59pm Arizona time on the day indicated.

Complete the required information and attach a single document, which includes: a cover letter, resume, and the names, addresses and phone numbers of three professional references. Resume should include all employment in month/year format (e.g., 6/88 to 8/94), job title, job duties and name of employer for each position. Resume should clearly illustrate how prior knowledge and experience meets the Minimum and Desired qualifications of this position.


Only electronic applications are accepted for this position. If you need assistance applying for this job, please contact our customer service center at 480-965-2701.


SEARCH Job ID number: 24722

ASU does not pay candidates for travel expenses associated with interviewing, unless otherwise indicated by the department at the time of call for interview.

Arizona State University Art Museum

Mill Avenue @ 10th Street

Tempe, AZ 85287-2911


Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Please help the animals

We interrupt the normal content of this blog to bring you an important announcement from one of my - ahem - pet charities, Arizona Animal Welfare League. As some of you know, I am a steadfast supporter of this organization and like to help in any way I can. Unfortunately, my erratic travel schedule prevents me from taking in foster animals, so if any of you can please help, I would consider it a personal favor. Thank you, and read on...


As you may know, AAWL & SPCA is the only shelter in the Valley that treats cats and kittens with ringworm. We currently have almost 50 cats/kittens in private homes being cared for by foster families until they recover. Those foster homes have reached capacity ---WE ARE FULL!! It typically takes a cat only 4-6 weeks to heal from this condition in a stress-free environment, such as a private home. It takes much, much longer in a shelter environment. That's why we need your help so desperately.

How Can You Help? If you have an extra guest room, bathroom, laundry room, cooled garage you can help! We will give you everything you need: medicine, food, litter, litter pans, bowls . . . whatever you need so it will not cost you a dime. All that we need is your space and compassion for a few weeks until the cats/kittens are cured. Although unlikely, if your pet(s) come down with ringworm, we will give you medicine to treat them. Even taking one cat or a litter of kittens would be a GREAT help and would save lives.

What is Ringworm? Ringworm derives its name from the classic red, round "worm like" lesion seen on human skin that is infected. It is not a worm! It is a minor fungus that can infect the skin of animals and humans. How Does it Spread? Ringworm is spread by contact with infected animals, from objects that the infected animal uses, such as bedding, brushes or grooming equipment. Not every animal or human who touches infected animals or objects will become infected. There are precautions that can be taken to avoid infection such as hand washing and cleaning protocols.

What happens if I do get Ringworm? Nothing. Ringworm can easily be treated with over-the-counter anti-fungal creams and it's really not a big deal at al

Who Do I contact if I can Help? If you can help, THANK YOU - you are directly saving a life.
Contact: Amber Durand 602-273-6852 Extension 120 or

Monday, June 21, 2010

Publishing job

The University of Arizona Press is seeking a highly motivated Editing,
Design, and Production Book Manager to manage editing, graphics, design,
production, manufacturing, and receipt of scholarly and trade books.
This person serves as part of the Press's management team and will be
responsible for supervising the editing, design, and production of
60-plus new books, 10 new-in-paper, and over 100 reprints per year.

As an equal opportunity and affirmative action employer, the University
of Arizona recognizes the power of a diverse community and encourages
applications from individuals with varied experiences and backgrounds.

The University of Arizona is an EEO/AA - M/W/D/V Employer job number 45467

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Freelancers needed

Paula Hubbs Cohen is looking for a couple of freelancers. Here is the info:

I’m looking for a few more good writers for a project I’m managing for a major real estate company. The gig is writing articles (300-400 words each) about specific cities and towns across the state, with sub-topics underneath each one, i.e., restaurants, theaters, houses of worship, etc.

The payment is $25 for each article, and yes I know that’s not a lot, but that’s as high as they will go, and no, I don’t get anything off the top…

It’s pretty easy work once you get into a rhythm and there’s what looks like steady work for a few good writers… I’ve already got a small team assembled and we’re doing great, but the project would move much faster w/two or three more writers…

If anyone is interested in more info, please have them contact me at .

Monday, May 3, 2010

Arizona Republic insider info

Wow, lots of movement going on at the Republic lately.

Megan Boehnke has resigned to take a job at the Knoxville News-Sentinel, so her beat covering Chandler and Tempe public safety is now open. Jahna Berry is joining the Business team as the jobs and workplace reporter, and will cover the legal profession as a sub-beat. However, her start date is on hold, because she's filling in as Phoenix City Hall reporter until a replacement is found for Scott Wong. Jahna was covering downtown and Phoenix Sky Harbor.

And John Yantis, former business editor at the East Valley Tribune, has joined the Republic as the defense /aerospace / technology/personal technology reporter. (Hope he likes multitasking).

Here's the posting for Megan's job. Not sure if it's only internal at this point, but no harm in poking around. Paul's e-mail is

The Chandler-Tempe public safety beat requires aggressive breaking news coverage in both cities, as well as watchdog and enterprise reporting, particularly for Chandler. Applicants should have experience writing for all platforms, including online, community Republics, Valley & State and A1. They also must be able to develop solid law enforcement and related sources for a beat that is largely proactive rather than reactive. While this beat involves generating traditional crime news, its greater mission is the production of solid enterprise reporting on the effectiveness of public safety efforts and trends in Chandler and Tempe, compelling profiles of leaders in law enforcement, major miscreants, and similar enterprise. The expectations include producing at least one Page 3 enterprise package and a cover centerpiece-related story for The Chandler Republic every five print days. An ability to read and translate data, working familiarity with state FOI laws, and a passion for law enforcement-related issues and topics are all essential for the reporter who fills this position.

If you are interested in applying, send a succinct note by Wednesday, May 7 to Southeast Valley Community Paul Maryniak, outlining your qualifications and specifics on how they would handle this beat. The beat will be structured around a Sunday-Thursday work week and applicants must be able to cover Mesa and Gilbert public safety when the other Southeast Valley public safety reporter is off.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

The 60 Percent Poem

I created a vision statement, but it was blurry.

I was a team player, but the game was always changing.

I tried to think outside of the box, but I worked in a cube.

I thought I was on the same page, but my page was in a different book.

I’ve been downsized, outsourced, restructured, re-engineered and leveraged. I’ve done brain dumps and done more with less. I’ve gone the extra mile and stretched the envelope. I’ve cast my net, covered all my bases, run it up the flagpole and gotten my ducks in a row.

I talk the talk and walk the walk. I’ve added value, cut time to market and sung from the same hymn book.

I think it’s time for a paradigm shift. Maybe I should wipe the slate clean.

The ball is in my court now. It’s time to refocus my goals, broaden my horizons and get back on track.

Let’s touch base and look at this holistically. After all, this is my baby.

Going forward, I’m not giving 110 percent. You can have 60. Do I have your buy-in?

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Potential Arizona Republic opening

SCOOP: The Arizona Republic will soon post for a Phoenix City Hall reporter.

The position requires an experienced reporter who has demonstrated strong government accountability work covering municipal government in a mid- to large-sized city. This reporter is expected to function as a watchdog, who not only knows how to hold elected leaders accountable, but can explain to readers what the actions taking place at city hall mean to them. An ability to identify and execute enterprise stories that take our readers beyond the day-to-day processes of city government is essential, as is an understanding of how to use public records and cultivate sources apart from the “usual suspects’’ to develop a beat that reflects the diverse mix of people, neighborhoods and issues that encompass the nation’s fifth largest city. The Phoenix City Hall reporter is member of the Phoenix reporting team writing stories for The Arizona Republic, and Phoenix community sections. Other required skills include: effective communication and collaboration with editors and fellow reporters who are not physically in the same location; ability to quickly turn stories for online posting; and consistent, frequent and relevant information posted on the Phoenix online blog.

Scottsdale/Phoenix Community Editor Chris Coppola will take internal applications until end of day, Monday, April 26 for the Phoenix City Hall opening. They also will be posting the job for external candidates.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

SPJ Freedom of Information Awards

Contact: Teri Carnicelli
President, Valley of the Sun SPJ


Phoenix, AZ—The Valley of the Sun Chapter, Society of Professional Journalist (SPJ) pays tribute to working journalists and others at its annual Arizona Freedom of Information Awards Reception, set for 1 p.m. Saturday, April 17. The event takes place in the Steele Auditorium of the Heard Museum, 2301 N. Central Ave. Those being honored this year include (*detailed award descriptions on accompanying page):

First Amendment Award—Dennis Wagner, Arizona Republic, and Mark Flatten, Goldwater Institute.

Sunshine Award—Sarah Fenske, Phoenix New Times; students Vaughn Hillyard and Sophia Curran, educator Sheri Siwek, and David Bodney and Aaron Lockwood of Steptoe & Johnson LLP.

The Lloyd Clark “How It Made Print” Award—Russell Wiles, Arizona Republic.

The Phil Alvidrez Award for Excellence in Journalism—Kent Dana, formerly of Channel 12 (KPNX) and
Channel 5 (KPHO).
The Order of the Silver Key Society—Betty Beard, Arizona Republic; Dennis Lambert, KJZZ/KFYI; and Dave Munsey, Channel 10 (KSAZ).

The theme of this year’s event is “Media Wars: A New Hope,” with a humorous nod to that groundbreaking science fiction/action/adventure series spawned by George Lucas. Our keynote speaker is Vanessa Fox, Entrepreneur and Creator, Google’s Webmaster Central.

Tickets are $40 for SPJ members, $45 for non-members, and $35 for students. Please mail checks to the P.O. Box address listed below by no later than Tuesday, April 13. Tickets include a mixer with cash bar, the reception with heavy hors d’oeuvres, and a memorable time honoring outstanding examples of the use of the First Amendment in shining a light on important public issues. More information is available on the chapter’s Web site,
And as always, may the source be with you.…..

Founded in 1909 as Sigma Delta Chi, SPJ promotes the free flow of information vital to a well-informed citizenry; works to inspire and educate the next generation of journalists; and protects First Amendment guarantees of freedom of speech and press. Our Valley of the Sun chapter has been doing the same since 1958. For more information about SPJ in Phoenix, please visit For more information about SPJ across the nation, please visit

FOI when you're SOL

Doing FOI When You’re SOL*:
Strategies for Getting Public Records to Improve
Your Reporting, ASU Cronkite School, April 27

*SOL: “Straight Out of Luck.”

Event is part of “Access Across America” tour with SPJ FOI chair,
UA journalism professor David Cuillier

* * *

Just about anyone who has heard Dave Cuillier talk about the press and the public’s right of access to government via public records and open meetings quickly is led to believe he wrote the book on the subject. Well, he has. More on that in a moment.

Cuillier, a University of Arizona journalism professor and SPJ’s national Freedom of Information Committee chair, is embarking on a nationwide tour, called “Access Across America.” One of his first stops will be here in Phoenix, sponsored by the Valley of the Sun chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists.

Cuillier will speak on “Doing FOI When You’re SOL*: Strategies for Getting Public Records to Improve Your Reporting,” 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Tuesday, April 27, in Room 256, the classroom, on the second floor Arizona State University’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication, 555 N. Central Ave. (at Fillmore, two blocks north of Van Buren Street), Phoenix. Refreshments will be served. Visitor parking for a fee is available in an ASU lot and a private lot just north of the Cronkite building.

Cuillier said his presentation is designed to help journalists who are stretched thin with daily stories, Web postings and extra responsibilities as well as feel as if they can’t do the kind of depth reporting they want.

Here is what he’ll cover:
· Great ideas for document-based stories you can do in your community
· Strategies for effective records requests and overcoming denials
· Psychological skills for getting officials to give you what you need
· Tips for making records part of your daily routine
· Rousing inspiration for doing great journalism in tough times

Each participant will receive a binder filled with handouts.

And, oh, yes, the book: Cuillier and Charles Davis of the University of Missouri, Columbia, have written "The Art of Access: Strategies for Acquiring Public Records."

Cuillier is chairman of the SPJ Freedom of Information Committee and has been a FOI newsroom trainer for SPJ for five years. He is a former reporter and editor who teaches courses on access, and conducts research on access strategies

The tour is funded by the Sigma Delta Chi Foundation, a non-profit organization that aids SPJ and journalism initiatives, with assistance by the University of Arizona School of Journalism. -30-

* * * *
Mark J. Scarp
Immediate Past President, Valley of the Sun chapter,
Society of Professional Journalists
(602) 810-8964