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APME Update for Thursday, March 15, 2012
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APME Update
APME Update for Thursday, March 15, 2012

Save the Date
• March 22-23, NewsTrain, Phoenix
• March 30,
March Madness online auction closes
• May 1,
Deadline for APME Journalism Excellence Awards
• May 1,
2-for-1 Membership Offer Ends
• May 18-19,
NewsTrain, Miami
• Sept. 13-14,
NewsTrain, Toronto
Sept. 19-21, 2012 - APME Conference, John Seigenthaler Center, Nashville, Tenn.


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ABOUT US: APME Update is published regularly by the Associated Press Media Editors Association. APME Update is edited by Sally Jacobsen. Send submissions by e-mail or call Sally at (212) 621-7007.

To receive APME Update by e-mail notify APME is an AP-member group of newspaper, broadcast and college education leaders founded in 1933 to provide input on the services of The Associated Press and to help newsroom managers become better leaders. A business league under section 501(c)(6) of the Internal Revenue Code, APME is funded through registrations and sponsorships at the annual conference, APME Supporting Memberships and in-kind support. The Associated Press Media Editors Association Foundation, Inc., a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization, supports educational programming. Membership in APME is open to senior print and online editors at AP-member newspapers and news directors, news managers or other senior positions at AP broadcast outlets in the United States and Canadian Press publications in Canada. It is also open to administrators, professors, instructors, leaders or advisers of journalism studies programs at recognized colleges and universities and to editors or leaders at newspapers, radio stations, websites or other news outlets at recognized universities and colleges.

Mailing address: Associated Press Media Editors Association, c/o Sally Jacobsen, The Associated Press, 450 West 33rd Street, New York, NY 10001. Phone: (212) 621-7007.



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The 2012 APME Journalism Excellence Awards honor superior journalism and innovation among newspapers, radio, television 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.

This year, innovation-award categories have been added for radio, television and college students. In addition, the online convergence category has been retooled. The new digital storytelling award recognizes print-online combinations that draw on data visualization, social media, video and/or blogs in presenting a story.

Categories include:

Sixth Annual Innovator of the Year Award. The winner will be awarded $1,000.

• (New) Innovator of the year awards for Television and Radio

• (New) Innovator of the year award for college students

Third Annual Gannett Foundation Award for Innovation in Watchdog Journalism. The winner in each of two circulation categories will be awarded $2,500.

• 42nd Annual Public Service Awards

• 42nd Annual First Amendment Award and Citations

• 11th Annual International Perspective Awards

Digital Storytelling and Reporting Awards (previously Online Convergence Awards)

All awards are presented for journalism published or launched between July 1, 2011 and April 30, 2012.

The deadline for entry is Tuesday, May 1.

The awards will be presented at the APME annual conference Sept. 19-21 in Nashville and linked on the APME website.

Entry fees are $50 for APME members and $100 for non-members.

For more information: Please go to:



APME’s second annual March online auction offers a beach getaway, iconic photo images, Pendleton blanket, sports tickets, books and much more!

Bid today and help APME pave the way. New this month, photos from the Associated Press Photo Mangers join the items up for bid.

Here’s how it works: Bid now and bid often. You will receive a reply to your email bid letting you know it was received. But you need to check to the auction site to see if other bidders try to claim your prize. The top bid wins at 5 p.m. EST, Friday, March 30. If you are a winner, we’ll notify you to arrange for payment and get your prize shipped in the U.S. (or make arrangements for other shipping).

Click here to view the items and bid



Join APME now at our $150 rate and bring on another editor, educator or broadcast news leader free.

Our 2-for-1 offer will last until May 1.

This is a great time to join, for reasons outlined below. But membership has more value than ever after the APME board reduced the price of entering our prestigious Journalism Excellence Awards from $75 to $50 per entry for members. Non-members will still pay $100 per entry.

Contest details will come out soon, but consider the savings you and the person you bring along will have. Reach out to a broadcast leader or journalism educator in your market, perhaps, or bring in another newsroom editor.

We'll also soon roll out three social media credibility webinars that will be offered to APME members at a reduced rate.

With more than 1,600 participants and 200 supporting members, the Associated Press Media Editors remains the practical voice for news leaders.

For the $150 cost of membership, you'll receive substantial discounts for the annual conference, APME journalism contests and APME webinars.

But there’s more:

• APME brings together news leaders from all sizes of publications and broadcast stations.

• The APME board of directors has dedicated seats for small newspapers, online and broadcast.

• Myriad programs, such as Sounding Board, help keep the lines of communication open with AP.

• News leaders can tap into AP resources on national projects, such as Broken Budgets and Aging America.

• Your newsroom can benefit from training that comes to you through NewsTrain and state APME organizations.

• APME is leading the First Amendment charge through its active committee work and with the help and resources of the AP.

• APME and APPM are at the forefront of the sports credentialing questions.

• Your organization can gain from Credibility Roundtables that offer research and insight into online issues nationwide.

• You can get great advice from the trenches.

• Great Ideas program and the Innovator of the Month contest help to keep the ideas rolling all year long.

• For educators: Access to the newsroom and broadcast leaders who do the hiring.

• Weekly APME Update with news from around the industry and the AP.

• APME News, the magazine that offers industry insight and guidance.

• The annual conference is held with Associated Press Photo Editors.

• Trade ideas and ask for advice from your peers at

Join today!



AP: Study: Restraints are used more on disabled students
Sacramento Bee: Number of hospital bills over $1 million soaring in California
The Tacoma News Tribune: Toll turmoil let many cross bridge for free in 2011
Portland Press Herald: Over 1,200 Maine public workers double dipping
Orlando Sentinel: Florida solar plant production struggles with costly problems
Houston Chronicle: Accidents involving city workers cost taxpayers millions
South Florida Sun Sentinel: Hospital finds new test to cut deaths from infection
Sunday Denver Post: Liberal super PACs in Colorado outspent Republicans
Arizona Republic: Investors with cash-up front deals squeeze out home buyers

Read about these and more by clicking here


BEAT OF THE WEEK: Photographer Rodrigo Abd

On any given day, The New York Times, Washington Post and Wall Street Journal have their choice of as many as 15,000 photos to feature on the front page – supplied by news agencies, staffers and freelancers.

On one day last week, AP's Rodrigo Abd scored a photographer's version of the triple crown. His picture of a young Syrian boy, Ahmed Khrer, wailing at the funeral for his father, who had been killed by an army sniper, made the top of Page One of all three papers, a sweep beyond memory. It also was shown on NBC's Nightly News

In making that gut wrenching image, Rodrigo Abd demonstrated the photojournalist’s craft at its highest level. It took ingenuity and guts to get to the moment, and artistry and speed to capture it (and then nerves of steel to get both the image and later himself out safely).

"It was just a gripping set of pictures from Syria," Merrill D. Oliver, the Times' front page photo editor that day, told the paper's Lens Blog. "Rodrigo's a really excellent photographer and he caught a real situation here in a place where we haven't seen a lot of photographs coming out, because it's so dangerous and so difficult to shoot there right now."

Syria has banned most foreign journalists, except for those on government-escorted trips, and local reporters work under heavy restrictions.

It was a risky assignment, getting out of Syria was as hard as getting in – "a journey,” Abd wrote upon his return, "that would take us through a pitch-black passage and miles of muddy olive groves in the freezing cold.”

"We ran into delays and dangers with every step,” he wrote, "from fighting between rebel and government forces to a missed connection with our guide.”

The government had warned that journalists entering the country illegally would be considered to "be accompanying terrorists and promoting their crimes.”

But Abd said he saw it as an opportunity to present an honest picture of a conflict that remains largely hidden from the world.

So he had traveled from his base in Guatemala and joined APTN contract stringer Ahmed Bahaddou in Turkey to slip into Syria. They made their way to the city of Idlib, where they faced sniper fire and shelling. It was there that Abd attended the funeral and saw the grieving son.

The photo put a human face on the fighting.



The Southeast Missourian has named Matt Sanders as the newspaper's managing editor.

Sanders previously served as co-managing editor with Chris Harris, who recently resigned for personal reasons. Before his promotion to co-managing editor, Sanders was the content editor for Sanders first came to the Southeast Missourian as the arts and entertainment editor in 2004. Before that he was a reporter at the Dexter Daily Statesman. Sanders is originally from Bloomfield, Mo., and has a bachelor's degree from the mass communications department at Southeast Missouri State University.

Executive editor Jim Healy has been named operations manager for the Statesboro (Ga.) Herald, replacing publisher Randy Morton, who was appointed publisher for The Signal in Santa Clarita, Calif.

Charles H. Morris, chairman and CEO of Morris Newspaper Corp. and its parent, Morris Multimedia Inc., made the announcement on Feb. 27. The company owns both newspapers. The Signal is a seven-day-a-week paper serving the Santa Clarita Valley in northern Los Angeles County. The Statesboro Herald publishes six days a week for Bulloch and four other surrounding counties in south Georgia.

Healy joined the Herald as executive editor in 2002. He had been metro editor for the Gannett-owned daily, The Times of Gainesville, Ga., which Morris Newspaper Corp. purchased in 2004.

"I appreciate the confidence Mr. Morris has placed in me to be operations manager for the Herald," Healy said. "I hope to build on the aggressive multimedia foundation Randy has put in place."

Healy will report to Joe McGlamery, regional vice president for Morris Newspaper Corp. and president of the Statesboro Herald.

Morton joined Morris Newspaper Corp. as an advertising executive with the Statesboro Herald in 1973. He held positions of farm editor, advertising manager, marketing director and general manager before moving to a sister paper in Hinesville, Ga., as publisher in 1984. Morton returned to Statesboro as publisher in 1995. Since that time, Morris said Morton has been instrumental in growing multimedia audience using a combination of print, online and mobile applications.

Morris Newspaper Corp. is a privately owned media company with properties in nine states in the U.S. and the Caribbean.



• Berkeley Police chief sends officer to reporter's house to get story changed
• Indiana newspaper blocked from running Department of Child Services stories
• Maine publisher shuts down 4 weeklies
• Former New York Times CEO retired with $23M package
• Report: Lenfest leads bid to buy Philly newspapers
• New Tampa Tribune president and publisher named
• Cartoonist Auth leaving Philadelphia Inquirer
• AJC publisher promoted as part of changes at Cox

Read about these items and more by clicking here



Robert J. Caldwell, the editorial page editor of The Oregonian, a longtime staff member, has died of a heart attack, the newspaper reported.

Caldwell, 63, who joined the paper as a copy editor in 1983, died March 10.

The Oregonian ( said Caldwell held his most recent position since November 1995, and his section brought the publication a Pulitzer Prize in 2006 for editorial writing.

The prize-winning editorial series, "Oregon's Forgotten Hospital" by Doug Bates and Rick Attig, covered abuses inside the Oregon State Hospital, the state's psychiatric hospital located in Salem.

Caldwell was an Oregon native, raised in La Grande. He was a standout high school athlete who excelled on his high school's football, basketball and track teams.

He attended what is now Eastern Oregon University before transferring to the University of Oregon, where he majored in journalism. He graduated from that school in 1972.

Caldwell worked as a reporter, editor and publisher at several newspapers in the Northwest.

Before taking his post at the head of the editorial section, he worked as a regional, metro and public editor for The Oregonian.

Caldwell was active in the journalism community, having served as president of the Oregon Newspaper Publishers Association, the Oregon Newspaper Foundation and the Western Oregon chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists.

He also served as editor-in-residence for two daily newspapers in Romania and was a consultant for other publications in the Balkans.

Greg Sellnow, a longtime reporter, editor and columnist for the Post-Bulletin of Rochester, Minn., has died, the newspaper reported.

Sellow, 54, was driving home from the Minnesota state high school hockey tournament in St. Paul late March 9 when he apparently had a medical emergency, Managing Editor Jay Furst said. The vehicle he was driving left the road and came to rest in a field. Passengers in the vehicle were not injured, the newspaper reported ( ).

Sellnow was a Post-Bulletin reporter, editor and columnist for 26 years. He had been editorial page editor since 2007. He worked as a reporter in his hometown, Cape Girardeau, Mo., as well as Bismarck, N.D., before joining the Post-Bulletin in 1986 as a reporter.

"Greg was a one-of-a-kind, ink-in-the-blood newspaperman," Furst said. "He was a magnificent reporter with a great sense of humor and a genuine interest and compassion for the people he wrote about. He loved his work — he cared intensely about his community and the importance of journalism that actually informs and helps people."

Sellnow was a native of Brainerd and a 1980 graduate of the journalism program at the University of Missouri in Columbia.

Read about these items and more by clicking here


AND FINALLY … Review of Olive Garden Becomes Internet Sensation

Associated Press

FARGO, N.D. (AP) — A North Dakota newspaper columnist sat down to review her town's hot new Italian restaurant, rhapsodizing about the chicken Alfredo, crisp greens and "two long, warm breadsticks."

But because the restaurant was the Olive Garden, Marilyn Hagerty's earnest assessment swiftly became an Internet sensation, drawing comments both sincere and sarcastic from food bloggers and others. For the 85-year-old Hagerty, the response was bewildering — and it threatened to make her late for a bridge game.

Hagerty's column in the Grand Forks Herald focuses on local food, and in North Dakota that means chain restaurants that are shunned by big-city food critics. She's reviewed Ruby Tuesday, Pizza Ranch, Applebee's and Country Kitchen. Even fast-food joints such as KFC, Qdoba and Subway have undergone scrutiny.

But it was her unfailingly polite prose about the Olive Garden — complete with a detailed description of the bustling waiters — that catapulted her to online stardom, at least briefly.

"At length, I asked my server what she would recommend," Hagerty wrote in the column called Eatbeat published Wednesday. "She suggested chicken Alfredo, and I went with that. Instead of the raspberry lemonade she suggested, I drank water."

The Olive Garden is "the largest and most beautiful restaurant now operating in Grand Forks," she concluded. "It attracts visitors from out of town as well as people who live here."

By Friday morning, her appraisal had received more than 290,000 hits on the newspaper's website. The second most-read story — a report about the University of North Dakota's Fighting Sioux nickname — got a mere 5,500 views.

"I do not get it," Hagerty said. "I mean, I'm sitting here minding my own business yesterday morning, trying to get my Friday column finished off so I could go play bridge. And all of a sudden, all hell breaks loose."

Within hours of appearing, the piece was spreading rapidly across the Web.

"Residents of Grand Forks, N.D., are lining up for blocks to enjoy a one-of-a-kind European dining experience that finally puts the city on the culinary map with its unique brand of Tuscany refinery," mocked the news website Fark. "It's called The Olive Garden."

But this is what Hagerty does.

"She writes five columns a week, and they are all this sort of this very direct, no-nonsense approach to what's going on," said Mike Jacobs, publisher of the newspaper. "She has her detractors, but she's very popular. She's a real asset to the Herald."

It's not the first thrill created by an Olive Garden opening in North Dakota. Back in 2008, when construction began on a location in Bismarck, it was front-page news in the Bismarck Tribune.

Hagerty said she was surprised by the reaction. She called her son, Wall Street Journal reporter Bob Hagerty, to ask what it meant to "go viral."

She acknowledged that some bloggers were making fun of her, but said she has received dozens of emails from people defending her, too.

Hagerty, whose late husband, Jack, was the longtime editor of the Herald, has been writing for the paper for six decades. She estimates she's done more than 1,500 restaurant reviews. And when she's found the cuisine to be terrible, she skips the review.

That's the way her bosses want it, she said.

"It's just sort of a way of life for me, to go out and eat," she said, adding that she pays for all her meals.

Tom Sietsema, food critic for The Washington Post and a Minnesota native, said Hagerty need not apologize for her choice of restaurants.

"Here's what I think. People poke fun of the Olive Garden. But, hey, if that's what the people there are talking about, that's theirs. She is covering news," Sietsema said.

He did have one complaint about the review, and it came with a chuckle. Marilyn didn't try any other entrees.

"She based this whole review on one dish, and she didn't even bother to have a lemonade. She did not do a thorough job," Sietsema said.

The restaurant could not have paid for such intense publicity, he added, calling this "Olive Garden's lucky day."
The same could be said for the Grand Forks Herald, Jacobs said.

"I'm delighted," Jacobs said. "We got a quarter of million hits on our website. Every modern newspaper editor dreams of such of thing. But you can never make it happen. It sort of happens on its own."

Heidi Schauer, spokeswoman for Olive Garden, said she read the review and a "lot of the other articles" that have followed.
"We're appreciative of the attention the restaurant is getting," she said. "Business is going well, and we're just excited for the Grand Forks community."


ABOUT US: APME Update is published regularly by the Associated Press Media Editors Association. APME Update is edited by Sally Jacobsen. Send submissions by e-mail or call Sally at (212) 621-7007.
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