Dennison reflects on year as APME president
Friday, November 8, 2013
Posted by: Laura Sellers-Earl
By Hannah Ash
Outgoing APME President Brad Dennison has had a sharp focus
on journalism since his freshman year at college, said Jim St. Clair, retired
IU Southeast journalism professor.
St. Clair said he remembers the first conversation he ever
had with Dennison. Dennison was a freshman at the time, and St. Clair was the
professor of his journalism class.
"It was obvious he had a focus on what he wanted to do,” St.
Dennison has maintained that focus throughout his career and
in his position as APME president. As outgoing president, Dennison said he is
proud of the organizations accomplishments in the past year. He emphasized the
accomplishments of the group as a whole instead of focusing solely on his own
"AMPE is a big group of volunteers,” he said. "It takes a
full, active board.”
Dennison said NewsTrain, a touring workshop that trains
journalists in their own cities, is a point of pride for the APME and for him.
This year marks the program’s 10th anniversary.
"It’s so rare for a program to work that long,” Dennison
said. He said programs like APME’s NewsTrain are a vital part of keeping up
with advances in the industry. Training journalists is an important function of
the APME, Dennison said.
St. Clair explained that training in the industry is more
important than ever because of the changing nature of development.
"It is important to share ideas and learn from others,” St.
Dennison also said that staying up-to-date with
technological advances is one of the greatest challenges the journalism
industry faces. However, he said the APME continues to offer cutting-edge
"We’ve been able to stay relevant when being relevant is
hard to do,” Dennison explained.
When tablets first became popular, professionals in the
industry were unsure how to handle them, Dennison said. Now, journalists have
embraced the use of tablets as a media platform.
"We are now much more coordinated as an industry,” Dennison
explained. He said remaining fluid in a time of great technological advancement
"You don’t know what’s next,” he said. "As long as it’s an
available platform, it’s something we need to focus on.”
Dennison said another recent APME accomplishment is the
planning of a joint 2014 APME/ASNE conference in Chicago. The conference will
mark the first time the two organizations will combine conventions. The
Associated Press Photo Managers also will be involved in the conference.
The APME is on solid ground for the future, Dennison said.
With plans for continued training and education programs and the joint
conference in the works, the APME will continue to foster the exchange of ideas
and promote the goals of the industry.
Dennison said he has seen many changes during his
involvement in the industry, but the basic functions of the APME have remained
the same. For instance, Dennison said the organization still handles a variety
of First Amendment issues.
"We are as relentless as ever,” he explained. He said
journalists will always face First Amendment and access issues, and the APME
will continue to serve as a watchdog.
Dennison has spent his entire career in the journalism
"I’ve done just about everything you can do in news,” he
explained. "I even spent some time in sales.”
Dennison is currently the vice president of publishing for
Gatehouse, Inc. After graduating from IU Southeast, he began his career at the
News and Tribune in New Albany, Ind. where he worked as a general assignment
reporter. After that, he advanced to an editor position for a newspaper in
Then, Dennison moved to Augusta, Ga, where he was a city
editor. He also later worked for newspapers on the south side of Chicago.
Dennison also did consulting work. Later, Dennison got a position as vice
president of news for Community News Holdings, Inc.
He later took a vice president of news position at
St. Clair said he has followed Dennison’s career advancement
over the years and is proud of his progression in the industry. A student’s
success is the best way to pay tribute to a teacher, St. Clair said.
He said he is proud of Dennison’s success and advancement.
Dennison said he enjoyed every position he has held in the
"It all naturally led to where I am now,” he explained.
Dennison said the process of his advancement has helped him understand how
everything works together. He said although he is currently on the corporate
side, understanding the news side of situations is beneficial.
"Where I am today is my favorite place to be,” Dennison