APME AT POYNTER 2010: BUILDING MOMENTUM
The APME 2010 Conference – Building Momentum – will be held Oct. 20-22 at the Poynter Institute in St. Petersburg, Fla.
More information on the program will be posted soon on the APME website at apme.com.
For hotels, the downtown Hampton Inn & Suites and the Marriott Courtyard both have set aside a block of rooms for $94 a night for the conference. The special Poynter room rate will be available until Sept. 26 or until the group block is sold out, whichever comes first. For more information, go to apme.com
IT'S TIME TO RENEW – OR JOIN – APME: 5 REASONS WHY
APME HAS A NEW WEB SITE AT apme.com
The Associated Press Managing Editors has launched apme.com on a new platform, hosted by yourmembership.com. It offers greater interactivity, membership management and an easy-to-use content management system.
New features include embedded video training libraries, wiki-type articles for editors to add to the discussion, an online payment processor and user profiles. There are easy links to APME's twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn pages. The calendar function makes it simple to see what training opportunities are ahead and to check on upcoming award and conference deadlines.
We welcome your thoughts and suggestions on the new site at http://www.apme.com/link.asp? ymlink=206786&finalurl=http% 3A%2F%2Ftinyurl%2Ecom% 2Fapmefeedback
2010 APME Journalism Excellence Awards: Deadline Monday, July 12, 2010
The 2010 APME Journalism Excellence Awards honor superior journalism and innovation among newspapers and online news sites across the United States and Canada. The awards seek to promote excellence by recognizing work that is well-written and incisively reported and that effectively challenges the status quo.
All Awards are presented for journalism published or launched between July 1, 2009,
and June 30, 2010.
The deadline for entry is Monday, July 12, 2010.
The Awards will be presented at the APME annual conference at the Poynter Institute in St. Petersburg, Fla., Oct. 20-22 and linked on the APME website.
The Awards include the Annual Innovator of the Year Award, Public Service Awards, First Amendment Award and Citations, Online Convergence Awards and International Perspective Awards. The Gannett Foundation Award for Innovation in Watchdog Journalism will be offered for the first time this year.
Nominations are received online only. For more details, go to:
SAVE THE DATES for these APME / NewsU Webinars
APME and NewsU will team up for two more webinars on journalism credibility topics. A code will allow APME members to sign up for $9.95.
Mark your calendar now for these dates:
June 2, 2 p.m., Credible Use of Social Media / Dave Olson, editor, The Salem News in Massachusetts
July 21, 2 p.m., Archived Content and "Unpublishing" Requests / Kathy English, public editor, Toronto Star
Journalism educators and college media advisers: Apply for a McCormick Award to attend NewsTrain in Nashville
Journalism educators and college media advisers may apply for awards to attend the Nashville NewsTrain, Sept. 23-24, 2010.
Click here for more information or to apply for a McCormick Award for the Nashville NewsTrain.
APME and Freedom Forum will host this NewsTrainat the John Seigenthaler Center, Freedom Forum, Nashville.Attend both days, or pick a day/pick a track. Registration costs $50 for one or both days.
FOR GENERAL REGISTRATION FOR THE WORKSHOP, CLICK HERE.
KEYNOTE SPEECH ON THURSDAY, SEPT. 23: JOHN SEIGENTHALER
Track 1: The Nimble Leader
-Helping Reporters to Develop Their Beats / Jacqui Banaszynski
-The Skeptical Editor/ Jacqui Banaszynski
-Covering the New America / Bobbi Bowman
-Creating a Constructive Culture/ Ronnie Agnew
Track 2: The Evolving Journalist
-Coaching Writers and Planning Content for Multiple Media / Michael Roberts
-Great Ways to Tell Stories With Data /
-Ethical Decision Making – Social Media and Breaking News / Banaszynski and Roberts
Third Rail / Extra Jolt
- Coaching Narrative Storytelling / Jacqui Banaszynski
- A course for educators: Journalism Class Exercises that Work
WE WANT YOUR "GREAT IDEAS”
We are accepting submissions for APME's 2010 "Great Ideas” book. What's a great idea?
It can be a new concept for print or online, or a major improvement to something we do every day. This is a chance for your newspaper to show off great work and to help fellow editors by providing ideas that might work in their markets. APME is again focusing on watchdog stories -- big and small -- because of the difference they can make in the community.
Our "Great Ideas” Web site allows you to quickly submit entries (150-word limit) and upload a picture (.jpg, .pdf) that accompanies the Great Idea. When the Great Ideas page opens, click on the "Submit Your Great Idea!” link and input the entry. The process is simple, quick and painless.
If you have questions, contact Kurt Franck, executive editor of The (Toledo) Blade or Terry Orme, managing editor news/business at The Salt Lake Tribune.
Kurt: 419-724-6163, email@example.com
Terry: 801-257-8727, firstname.lastname@example.org
APME UPDATE NEEDS YOUR HELP
Please send links to your best impact reporting -- whether of the watchdog variety or a look at stimulus spending -- or to any other subject you would like to share with other editors. Please e-mail the link to email@example.com
WATCHDOG REPORTING: SUMMARY OF IMPACT JOURNALISM FROM PAST WEEK
The Associated Press reports from Louisiana that while already battered by hurricanes, weakened by erosion and flood-control projects, the sprawling wetlands that nurture Gulf of Mexico marine life and buffer coastal sites from storm surges now face another stern test as a monster oil slick creeps ever closer. About 40 percent of the nation's coastal wetlands are clumped along southern Louisiana, directly in the path of oil gushing from a ruptured underwater well. Roughly 3.5 million gallons has escaped in the three weeks since an oil rig explosion, and some is bearing down on the marshes as workers rush to lay protective boom. Removing oil from wetlands is a huge challenge. Bulldozers can't simply scrape away contaminated soil, as they do on beaches. Cutting and removing oil-soaked vegetation could further weaken the fragile vegetation that holds the marshes together. Absorbent materials and detergents have limited effectiveness, AP reported.
http://www.kansascity.com/ 2010/05/10/1935080/oil-spill- threatens-already-weakened. html
The Associated Press reported that America's top CEOs are set for a once-in-a-lifetime pay bonanza. Most of them got their annual stock compensation early last year when the stock market was at a 12-year low. And companies doled out more stock and options than usual because grants from the previous year had fallen so much in value that many people thought they'd never be worth anything. But stock prices have generally surged ever since. Even with last week's sharp declines, CEOs still have enormous gains on paper. "The dirty secret of 2009 is that CEOs were sitting on more wealth by the end of the year than they had accumulated in a long time," says David Wise, who advises boards on executive compensation for the Hay Group, a management consulting firm. An Associated Press analysis of companies in the Standard & Poor's 500 index shows that 85 percent of the stock options given to CEOs last year are now worth more than they were on the day they were granted. For some the value jumped by a factor of 10 or more. A year ago, after the stock market had collapsed, 90 percent of the options granted in 2008 were worth less than the original estimate, or were considered "underwater," according to the AP's analysis.
http://www.philly.com/philly/ business/20100510_ap_ apimpactmarketgainssetupceopay bonanza.html
The Associated Press reported that Toyota waited nearly a year in 2005 to recall trucks and SUVs in the United States with defective steering rods, despite issuing a similar recall in Japan and receiving dozens of reports from American motorists about rods that snapped without warning, an Associated Press investigation has found. The lengthy gap between the Japanese and U.S. recalls - strikingly similar to Toyota's handling of the recent recall for sudden acceleration problems - triggered a new investigation Monday by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, which could fine the automaker up to $16.4 million. That was also the amount Toyota paid last month in the acceleration case. "Our team is working to obtain documents and information from Toyota to find out whether the manufacturer notified NHTSA within five business days of discovering a safety defect in U.S. vehicles," NHTSA Administrator David Strickland said in a statement. Federal regulators "are taking this seriously and reviewing the facts to determine whether a timeliness investigation is warranted," NHTSA spokeswoman Karen Aldana told the AP in response to questions about the 2005 recall. An automaker is required to notify NHTSA about a defect within five days of determining one exists. The AP reviewed hundreds of pages of court documents, including many of Toyota's internal communications from the period when the steering problems first emerged. The AP also analyzed government files and complaints from drivers who experienced trouble behind the wheel.
The Tampa Tribune reports homes with caustic, smelly drywall from China are showing up on real estate agents' listings these days. Also showing up: willing buyers. The homes for sale typically have unbelievably low listing prices, some at a fraction of the cost of comparable homes in the neighborhood. They range from town homes in the suburbs to million-dollar waterfront properties. The federal government is investigating possible health problems associated with the drywall. Homeowners have complained of breathing trouble, headaches and nose bleeds. The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission recently recommended that homes with the drywall be gutted and rebuilt. Real estate agents say those who have cash to fix homes can get a bargain, but they should understand the risk: Buyers may underestimate the scope of the problem. Renters, also, face problems with unscrupulous investors who take on tenants without fixing the drywall.
http://www2.tbo.com/content/ 2010/may/09/090044/na-tainted- homes-can-find-buyers/
A Sacramento Bee investigation into behavior modification units in six California prisons, has uncovered evidence of racism and cruelty at the High Desert State Prison in Susanville. More than 1,500 inmates have passed through such units. The investigation included signed affidavits, conversations and correspondence with 18 inmates. Inmates described hours-long strip-searches in a snow-covered exercise yard. They said correctional officers tried to provoke attacks between inmates, spread human excrement on cell doors and roughed up those who peacefully resisted mistreatment. Many of their claims were backed by legal and administrative filings, and signed affidavits, which together depicted an environment of brutality, corruption and fear. Behavior units at other prisons were marked by extreme isolation and deprivation – long periods in a cell without education, social contact, TV or radio, according to inmate complaints and recent visits by The Bee. An inmate of the Salinas Valley State Prison behavior unit won a lawsuit last year to get regular access to the prison yard after five months without exercise, sunlight or fresh air. The Bee's investigation also revealed a broad effort by corrections officials to hide the concerns of prisoners and of the department's own experts. Their final report, released only after The Bee requested it in April, downplayed the abuses.
http://www.sacbee.com/2010/05/ 09/2737459/the-public-eye- guards-accused.html
The Press of Atlantic City reports that Atlantic City, with a dwindling population, employs many more workers than cities almost three times its population. The city also pays some of its public officials much more than officials in comparable — and sometimes much larger — cities. A Press of Atlantic City analysis of a 2008 U.S. Census Bureau survey on government staffing shows Atlantic City has one of the highest rates of workers to residents in the nation. The Press analyzed data on 1,376 municipalities with 2008 populations of more than 20,000, and Atlantic City ranked 30th-highest among them, based on a city population then of 39,684. The city employed 43.6 workers per 1,000 residents, a rate higher than major U.S. cities such as Philadelphia (20.9 employees per 1,000 residents), San Francisco (38.1), Boston (34.2) and Baltimore (42.3). The figures are the most recent.
http://www. pressofatlanticcity.com/news/ press/atlantic_city/article_ 53f19b6c-5b17-11df-9c1f- 001cc4c002e0.html
The Tulsa World reports the city employees have had nearly 4,200 accidents in city vehicles in the past decade, including several who have been involved in 10 or more wrecks. A Tulsa World investigation found repairing damage to those vehicles cost taxpayers about $350,000 annually. The World reviewed data provided by the city on accidents involving city vehicles since 2000. Police and fire, public works, parks, development service and equipment management are among the more than 20 departments that have employees driving city vehicles. Tulsa Police Officer Jared K. Upton has been involved in four traffic collisions in the past 10 years, city records show. Police records show that investigators deemed all four collisions his fault. "Collisions happen," Upton said. "I see them (crashes) all day; I'm on my way to one now." He added, "I have to drive."
http://www.tulsaworld.com/ news/article.aspx?subjectid= 11&articleid=20100509_11_A1_ Jntaom183618
The Idaho Statesman reports that the ease and anonymity of the Craigslist website has made it a virtual pawn shop -- revolutionizing the fencing of stolen goods. Idaho police routinely now tell crime victims to look for their stolen property on Craigslist. Craigslist has been a boon for people trying to sell and buy stuff, find apartments, peruse job listings and find just about anything else since the mid-2000s, when the San Francisco-based firm expanded to multiple cities, including Boise. For law enforcement, all that free and open access to selling has created a huge opportunity for all kinds of crime - from giving thieves a place to sell stolen goods to facilitating child prostitution.
http://www.idahostatesman.com/ 2010/05/09/1185890/crooks-use- craigslist-to-lure.html
The Buffalo (N.Y.) News reports that nearly three years after State Sen. Antoine M. Thompson says he was "almost killed" when a truck ran his SUV off the Thruway near Rochester in 2007, he and his wife filed suit in February against the driver and the trucking company. Thompson suffered a 25 percent tear to his rotator cuff. A few weeks after filing that suit, Thompson also introduced legislation in the Senate that significantly expands the definition of "serious injury" in a personal injury lawsuit and would cover any legal action pending at the time of passage — including his own. Did his Thruway accident and subsequent lawsuit influence his legislation? "It's only a ‘coincidence,'” Thompson said. Is it a conflict of interest to sponsor legislation that could greatly enhance the prospects of his own lawsuit? "That's pretty far-fetched," Thompson said. "One has nothing to do with the other." Still, after The Buffalo News inquired about the bill and his lawsuit last week, he said he is withdrawing his sponsorship of the legislation.
http://www.buffalonews.com/ 2010/05/08/1044659/thompson- legislation-stirs-new.html
The St. Petersburg Times, in a Mother's Day report on "Belated Bundles of Joy," tells readers that across Florida and the United States more women are bucking the odds, accepting the risks and — in many cases — absorbing high costs to have children at an age when some peers are welcoming grandchildren. The number of women 45 and older giving birth in Florida is small, but it has more than doubled in the last decade. Many have been helped by fertility treatments, while others have overcome long odds against spontaneous pregnancy so close to menopause. "The demographics of pregnancy have changed drastically," says Dr. Robert Yelverton, chief medical officer of Women's Care Florida, a Tampa-based network of more than 100 obstetricians. "But it's a trend we as obstetricians worry about because getting pregnant and having a child at later ages carries increased risk."
The Arizona Daily Star reports Tucson's city budget has grown at more than double the inflation rate and nearly five times faster than the population over the last 10 years despite numerous cuts over the past two years, scaling back both services and employees, and eliminating one entire department. Even with a 5 percent reduction in the city workforce from 2000 through 2009, city spending on workers' salaries and benefits has gone up 40 percent, while inflation has been about 23.4 percent. A complicating factor has been the amount of construction paid for with non-voter-approved bonds. Bonds approved by voters have their own dedicated repayment source, such as secondary property taxes or other special revenues. Non-approved bonds must be repaid from the operating fund, competing with police, fire, parks and other services for a limited amount of cash.
http://azstarnet.com/news/ local/govt-and-politics/ article_3648a7d6-add7-578f- b1c7-adfde89f9a11.html
The Oregonian reported that many other cities had changed policies to prevent the sort of left-turn accident that killed two pedestrians in downtown Portland. TriMet, the public transit agency, at first said it had no plans to change its practices in the wake of the wreck. A day after The Oregonian's reporting, however, it decided to
phase in changes to improve turn safety.
http://www.oregonlive.com/ portland/index.ssf/2010/05/ trimet_reconsiders_
The Rochester (N.Y.) Democrat and Chronicle looks into an old murder case and how it was overturned and a prisoner set free after years of appeals. On April 28, a judge freed Frank Sterling, 46, because of new evidence — including DNA — pointing to another man. Sterling had been incarcerated since 1991 for Viola Manville's murder. During the past 18 years, authorities pointed to Sterling's numerous unsuccessful appeals — all of which relied on claims that Mark Christie likely killed Manville — as evidence of the propriety of Sterling's conviction. But Sterling's supporters say the six unsuccessful appeals and attempts at a new trial should be viewed as a house of cards that authorities and judges did not want to disrupt. Christie took two lie detector tests years ago and convinced examiners he was not the killer. Authorities now suspect he is.
The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports Milwaukee County's top mental health administrator intentionally houses female patients with men known to be dangerous "because the presence of women reduces the likelihood of the men being violent," according to a county supervisor's letter obtained by the Journal Sentinel. John Chianelli, administrator of the county's Behavioral Health Division, told county supervisors during a closed-door session last month that segregating men and women would result in more violence. "It's a trade-off," he said. "Putting 24 aggressive male patients into a male-only unit would increase the level of violence in the unit." Chianelli's remarks came during a County Board committee called into closed session on April 14 to find out why there are reports of an increasing number of sexual assaults at the county facility, including the rape of a 22-year-old pregnant woman last summer. His comments are detailed in a four-page letter by Supervisor Lynne De Bruin recapping points he made at the closed session. The Journal Sentinel obtained the letter through a request under the state's open records law.
The Orlando Sentinel reports Florida high schools have been boosting their graduation rates for years by transferring thousands of struggling students to adult-education centers and then removing them from school rolls as if they didn't exist. Those who have fallen behind and are unlikely to earn diplomas no longer are part of the equation when school districts compute their overall graduation rates, so the percentage of graduates looks much better than it really is. A prime example: More than one in every seven students in Seminole County's class of 2009 was listed as "transferred to adult education" and dropped from the graduation calculations. The problem is widespread. Blake High School in Hillsborough County, which promises "a rigorous college preparatory education," lost a quarter of last year's graduating class to adult-ed transfers and then claimed a graduation rate of 86 percent. Fold them back in, and the graduation rate becomes 63 percent.
http://articles. orlandosentinel.com/2010-05- 08/news/os-schools-transfer- adult-ed-20100508_1_ graduation-rate-adult- education-student-from-ninth- grade
The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports a Menomonee Falls couple, whose child-care center has been under criminal investigation for suspected fraud since at least January, continued to collect money from the state's taxpayer-supported Wisconsin Shares program – even getting an $18,000 check that was issued the day after the FBI raided the center. The state finally cut off funding the same day the Journal Sentinel reported the raid. But by then the state had already paid Executive Kids Early Childhood & Learning Center $130,000 this year alone. State officials said law enforcement authorities asked them to allow the center to continue operating during the initial portion of the investigation. However, in the five years since its opening, Executive Kids has amassed a lengthy history of program violations while reaping more than $2 million in public money - all after its operators, Duane and Shontina Gladney, declared bankruptcy in federal court, records show.
http://www.jsonline.com/ watchdog/watchdogreports/ 93209269.html
The Houston Chronicle reports the eight Houston police officers suspended last month for their roles in the alleged beating of a juvenile burglary suspect have previous substantiated complaints against them, including at least two involving accusations of excessive force, according to Police Department records. The majority of the 29 complaints against the eight officers are relatively minor. The HPD list of internal affairs complaints, provided to the Houston Chronicle under Texas open records laws, does not give specifics of any complaints beyond the category of violation, the date, name of the complainant and a notation that the complaint was sustained. News of the alleged beating of a 15-year-old burglary suspect that led to the eight suspensions was followed days later by an incident in which three Houston Police Department officers were accused of roughing up a Chinese diplomat in the garage of his nation's consulate after a traffic stop in the Montrose area.
http://www.chron.com/disp/ story.mpl/metropolitan/ 6997452.html
The Fort Worth (Texas) Star-Telegram reports that three years after the city said it would crack down on overtime pay, dozens of employees continue to boost their salaries by 25 percent or more. According to Star-Telegram research, the top 100 overtime earners – 71 police officers, two civilian police employees, 25 firefighters, an in-house lobbyist and a construction inspector – boosted their salaries by an average of about $23,000, from $75,742 to $99,037. One officer boosted his salary by 73 percent through overtime pay. To earn that amount, the officer had to work more than 60 hours a week the entire year, more than 1,000 hours in overtime. A horse trainer in the Police Department earned overtime amounting to 786 hours; a police communication shift supervisor, 630 hours; another police officer, 930 hours. The City Council has been pressing department heads to reduce overtime since 2007, when an audit showed that excessive overtime was contributing to a shortfall of more than $400 million in the municipal pension fund.
http://www.star-telegram.com/ 2010/05/08/2174572/dozens-of- fort-worth-workers-boosting. html
The South Florida Sun Sentinel of Fort Lauderdale reports that the Broward School District's evaluation system does almost nothing to weed out bad teachers. Only 11 of its roughly 16,703 public school teachers received unsatisfactory job performance evaluations last year. And just two teachers with "tenure" — essentially those on the payroll for four years or more — have been fired for poor performance since September 2007. Across Florida, it's much the same. Only 625 of 237,868 public school teachers received an unsatisfactory review last year, according to the state Department of Education. Principals in Broward rate teachers as satisfactory, needs improvement or unsatisfactory based on skills such as classroom management, communication, record keeping and instruction. There is little room for specific strategies to improve skills and few incentives for teachers to excel. And while principals have the option of attaching more detailed assessments, teachers union officials said principals rarely do so.
http://www.sun-sentinel.com/ news/education/fl-teacher- evaluation-broward-20100508,0, 5056733,full.story
The Austin American-Statesman reports blood taken from Texas newborns in a state-mandated program to screen for defects and potentially deadly disorders has proved to be a valuable commodity — not just for researchers who might discover causes and treatments for diseases, but for companies developing, manufacturing and selling lab tests around the world. State officials say what they have done — exchanging dried blood spots for equipment or charging fees on rare occasions — benefits taxpayers and the public without compromising the privacy of samples, which are marked with code numbers, not names. But the department has walked a tightrope in how it uses the leftover blood spots, collected from virtually every baby born in the state as part of its 45-year-old newborn screening program. As a state agency that operates in the not-for-profit world of public health, it's supplying valuable samples to corporations that earn profits and secure patents from products the department has helped them produce and market.
http://www.statesman.com/news/ texas-politics/state-agency- swaps-babies-blood-for- supplies-678302.html
AP'S BEAT OF THE WEEK WINNERS
An unprecedented five honorees are related tocoverage ofthe oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico and efforts to contain it – the most ever for the same news event, reflecting the breadth of AP coverage.
The prize goes to Atlanta-based Business Writer Harry Weber and New Orleans-based photographer Gerald Herbert for getting exclusive access to the ship carrying the gigantic containment box that was supposed to fix the underwater oil gusher.
All media had been told that they would be kept outside a perimeter 25 miles from the area where the work was being done. It was left to Weber to get AP on the boat. And Weber is nothing if not relentless. He stayed up all night, peppering BP with calls and requests, driving home the time-honored AP sales pitch: its reach and balance, that we could relay words and images to the rest of the world. Finally, BP agreed to give AP two spots on the supply ship Joe Griffin.
The result was a front-row seat for pacesetting, all-formats coverage of the daring, dramatic and ultimately unsuccessful mission. For the next seven days, Weber and Herbert were the only media within sight of the well, even as competitors like Reuters, Bloomberg and CNN complained loudly.
Weber and Herbert were ahead on virtually every key development, sometimes hours ahead of BP's own PR staff. When they reported that the containment box had hit the ocean floor, an angry BP spokesman at the command center in Robert, La., insisted it wasn't true. It was, of course. Word just hadn't been sent to the command center.
AP text, photos, video, audio and interactives were widely used around the world. Herbert shot both still and video images. Weber, in addition to regular updates to the text report, also did telephone interviews for radio and voiceover on video and interactives.
Other AP coverage of the oil spill produced four honorable mentions:
_ Noaki Schwartz, Los Angeles, a member of the AP Environment Beat Team, for uncovering transcripts of BP interviews with survivors of the April 20 oil rig explosion thatunleashed the spill.
_ The Interactive Department, for creating five theme interactives for the oil rig disaster. Each interactive had scoops and exclusives: animation of the oil's movements; the first video images of dolphins swimming in oil, shot by South multimedia editor Peter Prengaman; a 360-degree aerial look at the spill; an explainer graphic of the shrimp's life cycle and illustrations of animals that could be affected, and experts on subjects from tourism to fishing talking about the spill's potential impact.
_ Michael Kunzelman, New Orleans, and Richard T. Pienciak, New York, for reporting that the federal Minerals Management Service, which regulates oil rigs, allowed BP to avoid filing a formal plan for responding to a blowout on the Deepwater Horizon project _ exactly the disaster unfolding in the Gulf.
_ Jeff Donn, National Investigative Team/Boston, and Seth Borenstein and Joe Hebert, Washington, for documenting that the blowout preventer system used on the BP rig had a history of failure, especially after federal regulators scaled back required pressure testing from weekly to biweekly in 1998.
BASEBALL HALL OF FAME DISPLAYS CENTURY OF AP PHOTOS OF NY YANKEES
On May 22, the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum in Cooperstown,
N.Y., will open a special exhibit featuring more than 100 years of New
York Yankees baseball as seen through the eyes of the journalists of The
"Pinstripe Pictures" features images reproduced from the AP book "New
York Yankees 365," a photographic history celebrating pinstripe baseball
in the Big Apple.
"The National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum records the history of
our National Pastime, and the award-winning photographs of the
Associated Press have captured the game's greatest moments for more than
a century," Hall of Fame President Jeff Idelson said in a release. "We
are honored to exhibit these timeless images in Cooperstown."
The exhibit will be on display through the end of 2010. Its opening
coincides with the Hall of Fame's "Yankees Weekend," May 22-23.
"Baseball and The Associated Press grew up together, and no news
organization has covered more of the nearly 400,000 professional games
that have been played to date," said AP President and CEO Tom Curley.
"We're thrilled and honored that AP has 'entered' the Hall of Fame,
sharing some of our enduring Yankee images at the vital center of the
game's great history."
AP TO TAKE REVOTE ON ROOKIE AWARD
Texans owner says Cushing had "issue" with league; AP to take revote on rookie award
By BARRY WILNER
AP Football Writer
NEW YORK (AP) -- Houston Texas owner Robert McNair said he knew during the 2009 season that linebacker Brian Cushing had "an issue" with the NFL, but had no details from the league of what it concerned.
Cushing was suspended by the league last week for violating its steroid policy. Although Cushing admitted taking a non-steroid banned substance, it is still considered performance-enhancing by the league. He did not identify the substance he took.
Cushing was voted The Associated Press NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year at the end of the season - part of the AP's annual awards honoring outstanding on-field performance by players. As a result of the penalty and admission, the AP is taking a revote for the defensive rookie award plus All-Pro outside linebacker. Cushing received five votes in that category and made the second team. He is still among the nominees in the revote.
Cushing was a runaway winner for the rookie award in balloting by a nationwide panel of 50 sports writers and broadcasters who cover the league. He received 39 votes, easily beating Buffalo safety Jairus Byrd, who had six.
"This is the first time we've encountered an issue like this," said Lou Ferrara, AP's managing editor for sports and entertainment. "Because these awards are based on on-field performance, we consider it necessary to review the matter and allow for a revote, especially after concerns were raised by many of our voters."
McNair criticized the suspension and appeal process because, he said, it doesn't provide enough information to the team.
"The club is left completely out of the loop on that," McNair said. "We're not even notified, it's the league and the player and the players' union. All we know is what's been announced at this point in time."
Cushing is suspended without pay for the first four games of the 2010 season, even though he said he took the substance in September, the first month of the 2009 schedule. He appealed the ban and a final decision was handed down last week.
"Brian had mentioned that he had an issue there, but we don't know what any of the details are, we don't know what doctors he may have consulted with, we don't know what evidence that the league might have had ... which is a very bad position to be in because we're the guy that's got the investment in the player. The league doesn't have any money invested in the player, the union doesn't have any money invested in the player, and yet they get the information and we don't.
"So it's a sensitive area because it is sort of like medical information and there's confidentiality and this sort of thing. But I think it's something that needs to be addressed in the next collective bargaining agreement."
Cushing will not be eligible for next season's Pro Bowl - he made the AFC team last January, but did not play, citing several injuries - or any NFL-sponsored awards.
"In the year a player is notified of and serves his suspension, he is ineligible for selection to the Pro Bowl or to receive any other honors or awards from the league or the NFL Players Association," NFL spokesman Michael Signora said Monday.
That includes player of the week and player of the month awards, the Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year Award or the Super Bowl most valuable player award.
Cushing can participate in all training camp and preseason activities, then must leave the Texans for the first four weeks of the season.
A first-round draft pick from Southern California, Cushing had 133 tackles for the Texans, who went 9-7, their first winning record. He had five sacks, four interceptions and two forced fumbles, numbers that normally belong to a seasoned veteran.
But he won't be available to the Texans until Oct. 4.
"Brian, what he has said, is he's been taking the same supplements ... for the last 10 or 15 years and he's been checked umpteen times and it hadn't shown up to be any kind of problem," McNair said. "So what happened, I don't know. He doesn't know at this point in time.
"The fact (is) that he didn't think he would get the suspension, but that's the way it is at this point in time and we accept it and we need to move on."
San Diego's Shawne Merriman won the 2005 defensive rookie award, then tested positive in the 2006 offseason for steroids contained in a supplement. Carolina's Julius Peppers won the 2002 award even though he had already been suspended for the final four games of the season for violating the league's drug policy _ he used a dietary supplement that contained a banned substance.
AP Sports Writer Kristie Rieken in Houston contributed to this story.
AP RESTORING COUNTRY NAMES TO SOME INTERNATIONAL DATELINES
Effective May 17, the AP will restore country names to these international datelines: Bogota, Copenhagen, Frankfurt, Hamburg, Kabul and Oslo. It will restore the province name to Ottawa.
These 49 international capitals and cities will continue to stand alone in datelines:
Amsterdam, Baghdad, Bangkok, Beijing, Beirut, Berlin, Brussels, Cairo, Djibouti, Dublin, Geneva, Gibraltar, Guatemala City, Havana, Helsinki, Hong Kong, Islamabad, Istanbul, Jerusalem, Johannesburg, Kuwait City, London, Luxembourg, Macau, Madrid, Mexico City, Milan, Monaco, Montreal, Moscow, Munich, New Delhi, Panama City, Paris, Prague, Quebec City, Rio de Janeiro, Rome, San Marino, Sao Paulo, Shanghai,
Singapore, Stockholm, Sydney, Tokyo, Toronto, Vatican City, Vienna and Zurich.
EDITORS IN THE NEWS
Three current or former members of the APME board of directors were among 35 "President's Ring" winners for 2009 announced by Gannett in recognition of their "outstanding work, exceptional performance and strong leadership." The company said all 35 are "stellar performers who are dedicated to giving their very best and inspiring others to do the same." They included Dave Ledford, past president of APME and vice president for news and executive editor of The News Journal of Wilmington, Del.; Hollis Towns, current APME vice president and executive editor and vice president for news of the Asbury Park (N.J.) Press; and Randy Lovely, APME board member and vice president for news and editor of The Arizona republic of Phoenix.
Tim Korte, an Associated Press newsman and sports writer, has been named AP's supervisory correspondent in Albuquerque. The appointment was announced by Linda Ashton, AP news editor for Arizona and New Mexico. Korte, 42, joined AP as an editorial assistant in Albuquerque in 1991 and was promoted to newsman in 1993. In 1997, he moved to Omaha, Neb., where he covered the University of Nebraska football team and the College World Series. He transferred to Salt Lake City in 1999, covering the NBA, college sports and the Salt Lake Organizing Committee ahead of the 2002 Winter Olympics. After the Olympics, he moved to Seattle and covered professional and college sports. Since returning to Albuquerque in 2005, he has covered sports and elections while maintaining beats on federal courts, energy and immigration issues. He served as interim news editor from July 2009 to February 2010. Korte grew up in Farmington, N.M., and holds bachelor's degrees in English and journalism from the University of New Mexico.
The Miami Herald has appointed a new managing editor to oversee newsroom operations. Aminda "Mindy" Marques Gonzalez spent 19 years as a reporter and editor for the newspaper. Marques wrote about religion and South Florida's unique communities, served as the editor on the metro desk, senior editor for news and multimedia editor. Her appointment comes as management is being reorganized. She said she sees the reorganization as a way for the newsroom to quickly respond to changes in how news is gathered. She left the newspaper in 2002 to work for People Magazine, but returned five years later. Marques graduated from the University of Florida in 1986.
The News-Leader Media Group has named David Stoeffler as its new executive editor. The Springfield News-Leader reported that the 51-year-old Stoeffler will take over the post on May 24. Stoeffer has been publisher, general manager or top editor at several publications, including the Suburban Journals of Greater St. Louis, the Arizona Daily Star, the Lincoln (Neb.) Journal Star and La Crosse (Wis.) Tribune. He currently is a consultant helping news organizations improve journalism and business operations. The News-Leader Media Group publishes the daily and Sunday Springfield News-Leader newspaper, weekly newspapers, magazines, websites and a mobile site.
Three newspapers are asking a judge to unseal a court order with information related to the death of a University of Virginia women's lacrosse player. A judge last week sealed search warrants executed as part of the investigation into the death of Yeardley Love. The 22-year-old was found dead in the bedroom of her Charlottesville apartment. Her ex-boyfriend, U.Va. men's lacrosse player George Huguely, has been charged with first-degree murder. The Daily Progress, the Richmond Times-Dispatch and The Washington Post filed the challenge. The sealed documents are thought to include returned warrants from searches of Huguely's apartment, Love's apartment and Huguely's body. The papers are challenging the order that sealed the documents but may press further for the returned warrants.
BUSINESS OF NEWS
The Washington Post Co. returned to a profit in the first quarter as declines in print advertising slowed and the company's cable TV and education businesses continued to grow. The Post Co. had net income of $45.4 million, or $4.91 per share, in the first three months of the year. That reversed a loss in the same period last year of $19.2 million, or $2.04 per share, brought on by big one-time expenses. Revenue grew 11 percent to $1.17 billion. With its namesake newspaper struggling, the Post Co. has been relying on its TV and Kaplan education businesses for growth. Now it plans to reduce its traditional role as a publisher even further. It announced that Newsweek magazine, which it has owned since 1961, is up for sale. The Washington Post Co. has pared its magazine losses sharply with deep cost-cutting and by selling Budget Travel. The company's magazine group, which now just has Newsweek, lost $2 million in the latest quarter after losing more than $20 million a year ago. But the company has said it doesn't see a way to make Newsweek profitable. The Kaplan division is the Post Co.'s strongest. It brings in more revenue than the rest of the company's businesses combined. Its revenue rose 20 percent to $711.4 million in the most recent quarter, with an operating profit of $57.9 million. The company's cable TV unit grew revenue a modest 3 percent. Advertising revenue at the Washington Post newspaper slid 8 percent to $68.7 million, but that was a little better than the 9 percent decline in the fourth quarter of last year.
Employees of Philadelphia's two major newspapers have been sent a letter warning of possible layoffs, but the lenders who won the newspapers at a bankruptcy auction last month say the notice is "procedural" and no such action is planned. The letters, sent May 7 on letterhead of The Philadelphia Inquirer and Philadelphia Daily News, say the new owners "will continue as the employer of all employees" but also note that the letter would serve as notice under a federal law that requires employers to give 60 days' notice in the event of mass layoffs. "The letter is a procedural letter. It was agreed they would send it out up at the auction in New York," said Robert Hall, named chief operating officer by the new owners. "The old company goes out of business that day and we start anew."
http://www.longislandpress. com/2010/05/08/pa-newspapers- layoff-notice-called- procedural/
E.W. Scripps Co. posted a smaller first-quarter net loss May 10, with ad dollars flowing back to its TV stations and expenses dropping at its newspapers. Media companies have been reporting an improving ad market for months as businesses start to spend again to attract customers. Even newspapers, which have lagged in the recovery behind television and Web advertising, say the ad slump is easing. In part, that's because newspapers are comparing this year's results to sharply lower results a year ago. The industry still faces the long-term threat of readers and advertisers migrating to online rivals. Overall, E.W. Scripps reported a net loss of $880,000, or 2 cents per share, in the first three months of the year. That's down from a loss of $220.7 million, or $4.12 per share, a year ago, when the company took big one-time charges to write down the value of its assets. Revenue slipped 3 percent to $199 million. TV revenue climbed 11 percent; advertising sales improved and the fees its broadcast stations charge cable operators to run their signals went up. The TV segment had an operating profit of $6.6 million, compared with a year-ago loss of $2.4 million. Newspaper revenue fell 7.6 percent, with advertising revenue down 12 percent. By comparison, newspaper ad revenue was down 20 percent in the fourth quarter. The smaller decline and a 19 percent drop in expenses helped the newspaper division make an operating profit of $16.6 million, up from $2.9 million a year ago.
A Houston Chronicle executive has been chosen as the new publisher of The Beaumont (Texas) Enterprise. Hearst Newspapers, which owns both publications, announced Bill Offill's appointment to succeed John E. Newhouse II. The 48-year-old Offill has been executive vice president of sales and marketing at the Chronicle since 2004 and holds a journalism degree from Louisiana State University. Hearst also announced a reorganization of its Texas newspapers. Under the new alignment, Offill will report to Chronicle publisher and president Jack Sweeney, who will also serve as president of the new Hearst Texas media group. Tom Stephenson, publisher and president of the Hearst-owned San Antonio Express-News, will serve as the group's general manager. Publishers of Hearst Newspapers in Midland, Laredo and Plainview will report to Offill in Beaumont.
The Times-Tribune of Corbin, Ky., has named Rob McCullough as publisher. The south-central Kentucky newspaper reports McCullough is a fourth-generation journalist who has been publisher of The Morehead News Group in eastern Kentucky for the last five years. Both The Morehead News Group and The Times-Tribune are owned by Community Newspapers Holdings Inc. The 49-year-old McCullough began his career at The Daily Independent in Ashland, where he entered management after graduating from Transylvania University with a bachelor's degree in business. McCullough's family owned and ran the newspaper in northeastern Kentucky until it was sold in 1979. Eddie Blakeley, senior vice president and division manager for Community Newspaper Holdings Inc., announced McCullough's appointment.
A former El Paso (Texas) Times circulation manager has been named the far West Texas paper's publisher. Sergio H. Salinas, a native of Laredo, was appointed to lead the MediaNews-owned newspaper. He replaces Ray Stafford, who resigned and then retired. Salinas was also named president and chief executive officer of the Texas-New Mexico News Partnership, which also publishes seven newspapers in New Mexico. Salinas previously worked as senior vice president for marketing and sales at The Dallas Morning News and executive vice president and general manager for the San Antonio Express-News.
AP CORPORATE ARCHIVES OFFERS BOOKLET FOR STATE MEETINGS ON RISKS JOURNALISTS TAKE TO COVER WARS
The AP Corporate Archives is producing a 70-page booklet entitled "The Costs of War:AP Journalists in Beirut, Kabul, and Baghdad, 1975-2010.” The booklet highlights the complex risks taken by AP journalists and local staff in covering the Lebanon civil war and the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. It features photographs and documents drawn from the Beirut and Cairo bureau records, the text archive, and the photo library, with commentary by Corporate Archives Director Valerie Komor.
The booklet is accompanied by a DVD featuring a selection of oral history interviews conducted last year with AP reporters and photographers in the Middle East.
The Archives is making the booklets available for state AP meetings. For more information, contact Valerie Komor at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 212-621-1731.
APME's GREAT IDEAS CD GIVEAWAY
The Texas APME convention is using APME's Great Ideas CD as a giveaway at the conference. The CD has terrific ideas that editors can use throughout the year. It might work for your conference too.
James Turner Leeson Jr., a Nashville journalist who wrote about race relations and education, has died at age 79. In 1951, Leeson made an audiotape of the Mississippi execution of Willie McGee, a black man convicted of raping a white woman. Years later, former Vanderbilt student Alex Heard used the tape as reference for a book, "The Eyes of Willie McGee: A Tragedy of Race, Sex and Secrets in the Jim Crow South," to be published by Harper. Leeson worked for The Associated Press, the Southern Education Reporting Service and the Race Relations Reporter. He also was the consulting journalist for Vanderbilt University student communications.
Former Beckley newspaper editor and historian James Wood has died. He was 85. He was a former editor of the Raleigh Register and a former managing editor of the Beckley Post Herald, which were later merged to form The Register-Herald. Wood wrote several books on local history, including "Raleigh County, West Virginia," and "Raleigh County Mine Deaths 1891-2000." He was born in Herndon and was a graduate of the University of Kentucky.
At Elena Kagan's high school, smart girls were the rule, and we were supposed to succeed
By BETH HARPAZ
Associated Press Writer
NEW YORK (AP) - There were a lot of smart girls at Hunter College High School, but only one of them posed for the yearbook in a judge's robes, quoted a Supreme Court justice and is remembered for playing a tough attorney in an eighth-grade trial.
Now Elena Kagan is a nominee for the U.S. Supreme Court, and her classmates - including me - can't say they're all that surprised.
"In a school of overachievers, Elena shined brightly," said Leslie Hunter-Gadsden, a writer and teacher who took Latin with Elena for four years. "She was always very focused, the kind of person who I thought, 'She's going to run something someday. She's going to be in charge of something.'"
Another classmate, Justene Adamec, recalled a mock trial in eighth grade in which she and Elena played opposing lawyers. Justene, playing prosecutor, went first. Then Elena presented her side, and Justene sought a rebuttal, but Elena wouldn't allow it.
"She said I had rested my case and couldn't call anyone," Justene recalled. "We were 13!"
Justene grew up to be a lawyer too, one of many accomplished professionals in Hunter's class of '77. Doctors, professors, bankers - yes, we even have a rocket scientist, astrophysicist Laura Kay. Hunter was a public school, but it was unique: It started in seventh grade, we had to pass a test to get in, and once we were there, our teachers made it clear they expected us to live up to our potential.
"You passed this test, you are a Hunter girl, you have this opportunity, and now you have to take that and make something of it," said Leslie.
We also came of age in the 1970s, as the feminist movement demanded equal rights for women and equal educational opportunities for girls. Hunter was all-girl when we attended (though a lawsuit later forced it to go coed) and the single-sex makeup was seen as a great advantage.
"Our teachers encouraged us to speak up, say what was on our minds and not be shackled or intimidated by having boys in the class, or feel as if we had to worry about our looks," said Dr. Beth Schorr-Lesnick, a gastroenterologist and president of Elena's class. "Math and science were just as important as social studies and English."
Hunter was an extremely diverse place, too, with kids of every race and ethnic background, from every neighborhood of the city, and every income level, from welfare to wealthy _ not a bad proving ground for a future judge to learn about the world.
"So you can imagine it was a place of very different points of view, opinions and takes on all the social, political, economic and religious issues of the day," said classmate Janine Lee Craane, who is managing director of Investments for Merrill Lynch, founder of the Craane Group and is listed on Barron's Top 100 Female Advisers.
Janine called Elena "a great citizen" in school, and many classmates echoed that. One recalled Elena thanking her after she helped bring a group of girls together on a difficult class project. Another remembered Elena standing up to one of our most intimidating teachers, Ira Marienhoff, in social studies.
"He asked a question that had everyone silent. But Elena met him straight on and silenced him - no small feat," said Ellen Purtell, who works as a counselor with female adolescents - a job that she says Hunter prepared her well for.
Elena was also known for a quick smile, a friendly, open manner and a great sense of humor. In a yearbook photo of a school government group in which she served as president, we thought she was playing a funny joke when she dressed in a judge's robes and held a gavel.
Now, of course, it seems like it was all just part of the plan, a first step to fulfilling her destiny.
One thing few classmates can remember is socializing with Elena out of school. In fairness, we commuted to Hunter, and at the end of the school day, we went home to our neighborhoods, so there was less hanging out than at other schools. But still, we had parties, we went to concerts, we went shopping.
Elena was less caught up in that aspect of teenage life than most of us.
"The things that preoccupied even very smart teenage girls - pop music and fashion - were not terribly interesting to her," said Elizabeth Petegorsky, a clinical social worker who attended both elementary and high school with Elena.
In our yearbook, each girl got to choose a quote to run with her picture. Many of us chose quotes from Carole King, Cat Stevens, J.R.R. Tolkien and other icons of the day. But Elena quoted a Supreme Court justice, Felix Frankfurter, in words that seem now to prefigure her successful career: "Government is itself an art, one of the subtlest of the arts."
Photo caption (top): In this undated photo released by Hunter College High School in New York, Elena Kagan is seen in a photo in the school's 1977 yearbook. Solicitor General Elena Kagan was nominated Monday, May 10, 2010, to the Supreme Court by President Barack Obama. (AP Photo/Hunter College High School)
Photo caption (middle): In this undated photo released by Hunter College High School in New York, Elena Kagan, second from left in the front row, poses with members of the school's student government in the school's 1977 yearbook. Kagan, wearing a robe and holding a gavel, was the student council president. The others are unidentified. Solicitor General Elena Kagan was nominated Monday, May 10, 2010, to the Supreme Court by President Barack Obama. (AP Photo/Hunter High School)
Photo caption (bottom): In this undated photo released by Hunter College High School, Elena Kagan raises her arm during a class trip to Philadelphia, in a photo from the school's 1977 yearbook. Solicitor General Elena Kagan was nominated Monday, May 10, 2010, to the Supreme Court by President Barack Obama. (AP Photo/Hunter College High School)