BABJ speaker series: Boston City Councilor Tito Jackson

We’re excited to announce we will be holding a new speaker series for the Boston Association of Black Journalists. 

For our first event, we will sit down with Boston City Councilor Tito Jackson, who will join us at Boston Neighborhood Network on Thursday, May 26. 

What: BABJ speaker series with Boston City Councilor Tito Jackson
When: 7 p.m. Thursday, May 26
Where: BNN, 3025 Washington Street, Roxbury, MA 02119
Please RSVP here


April 16 Meeting Minutes

April 2016 BABJ meeting agenda

Saturday April 16, 11 – 1 p.m.

Location: WBUR
890 Commonwealth Avenue
Boston, MA 02115

I. Reports

  • October 2015 – March recap 2016 – Zuri Berry

We had a great student resume workshop in October in partnership with AAJA. The turnout was excellent, so we want to continue doing these types of events.

We also had a great joint event/meeting with SNEABJ last month, featuring a panel of local trailblazing women journalists. The event celebrated women’s history month.

We also toasted Pam Cross. It was a great social gathering at Darryl’s and Pam wrote us a really nice thank you note afterward.

-With the success of these events, we want to make sure we make them annual occurrences.

-Gary Washburn suggests we offer job shadowing opportunities to students and members.

-We should do a formal month of job shadowing with BABJ. We’d have people sign up and then set up appointments that month to job shadow.

Also congratulations to BABJ member Johnny Green, who was named news director at WBZ!

  • Financial update – Zuri Berry

– Our account is stable

  • News from NABJ council of Presidents – Zuri Berry

Have done first round of negotiations with a legal advocacy group to help local chapters deal with 501(c)(3) filings. This is a great step that will help us keep up with our 501(c)(3) paperwork and filings.

  • Region 1 conference update – Zuri Berry

The conference is April 29-30 in Baltimore. There is a lot of great programming set for the conference, including government officials and other high profile people.

The theme for the conference is “One Year After Freddie Gray: Navigating Social Justice In Journalism”

Here’s a link to the program:

Our own BABJ member Michelle Johnson will also be running a workshop on Google Tools

II. Chapter calendar

  • Possible future collaboration with Women in Sports and Events (WISE) – Shanda Foster

We will follow up on this at another time with Shanda.

  • Speaker series: Boston City Councilor Tito Jackson

The idea is to have an on-the-record meeting with him. He has given us a tentative yes. We know need to work out dates and logistics. Possibly in May.

  • There was discussion about whether or not to pursue more informal off-the-record conversations. Can pursue on-the-record meetings with option to go off the record.
  • Also discussed reaching out to other officials for meetings. Possibly in June or July.

In August, we should do a pre-convention kick off get together.

  • Social schedule for winter

Should plan to do holiday get together the first week in December.

Can be an informal meeting or something more formal where we charge.

The folks at AAJA and ONA Boston are very open to partnering with us on events, so we should keep that in mind moving forward.

  • Student resume workshop

Will aim to do this in September or October

Other events:

We should plan some fun light social events throughout the summer and over the course of the year. For example: After work drinks, bowling, dinner, summer picnic in July.

Erica Morrison suggests renting out the roof deck at the Bruce Bolling building for a social get together. Can get local businesses to donate food or provide in-kind services.

  • Upcoming chapter deadlines

We are up to date with our state filings.

NABJ audit deadlines. They would like to get it before the national convention.

III. BABJ elections

  • Outlining process going into second half of 2016

We are looking toward to next phase of BABJ so want fresh ideas and new people in leadership positions to take BABJ to the next level. If you have feedback or suggestions, please send them our way. We want to work towards elections and getting a new leadership team in place this year.

  1. Adjournment & Announcements
  • Questions, concerns and feedback.

Our friends at SNEABJ are hosting a resume workshop at the University of Rhode Island next Saturday. It is from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. RSVP:


Join us for our April 2016 meeting

The Boston Association of Black Journalists will convene for a general meeting 11 a.m. Saturday April 16 at WBUR.

Please see details and the agenda below.

April 2016 BABJ meeting agenda

Meeting date: 11 -1 p.m. Saturday April 16
Location: WBUR 890 Commonwealth Avenue, Boston, MA 02115
(Note: Entrance on St. Paul Street; WBUR is located on third floor)
Conference call number: 1-605-475-5950
Access code: 3730565

I. Reports
• October 2015 – March recap 2016 – Zuri Berry
• Financial update – Zuri Berry
• News from NABJ council of Presidents – Zuri Berry
• Region 1 conference update – Zuri Berry

II. Chapter calendar
• Possible future collaboration with Women in Sports and Events (WISE) – Shanda Foster
• Speaker series: Boston City Councilor Tito Jackson
• Social schedule for winter
• Student resume workshop
• Upcoming chapter deadlines

III. BABJ elections
•Outlining process going into second half of 2016

IV. Adjournment & Announcements
• Questions, concerns and feedback.

NABJ Region 1 conference registration open

The National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ) will host the 2016 Region I Conference on April 29 and 30 at the School of Global Journalism & Communication on the campus of Morgan State University in Baltimore, Maryland.

>>>Click here to register< <<

Titled One Year After Freddie Gray: Navigating Social Justice in Journalism, the conference is expected to be one of the largest and most significant regional conferences in memory. The conference will consist of a major town hall, workshops, and nationally-known speakers during the one-year anniversary of Gray’s disturbing and untimely death.

Gray’s death was the flashpoint for protests out of concern over police brutality in predominantly African-American neighborhoods. His death also brought to the forefront issues on government and community relations and a call to increase diversity in the media.

Built and crafted as a learning laboratory, the conference will focus on three crucial areas: community engagement, digital training and media coaching. It will also include a town hall discussion titled #TogetherBaltimore that will focus on the future of the city following last year’s unrest, and discuss strategies as to how the media can do a better job in its coverage there and in similar cities across the country.

This year’s conference will build upon the skills of journalists, public relations professionals and community leaders who live in the following NABJ Region I states: Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, Washington D.C. and West Virginia. The conference will allow seasoned journalists, seen on our television screens and read in the various forms of print and new media, to enhance their skills and acquire new ones.

Networking opportunities include a welcome social on Friday, April 29, and an awards reception immediately following the conference on Saturday, April 30. There will be an attendance challenge where a cash award will be presented at the Saturday reception to the professional and student chapters with the largest number of members registered. The funds will go toward each respective chapter’s scholarship fund.

Baltimore is a great conference city with its popular Inner Harbor and African-American historical sites. The city is within reasonable travel distance from major cities along the U.S. East Coast.

If and when you have any questions about the sponsorship benefits and conference program, please contact Johann Calhoun at or (267) 602-6527.


February 6 Meeting Minutes

BABJ Meeting minutes
Feb. 6, 2015

Gary Washburn
Zeninjor Enwemeka
Michelle Johnson
Torrance Latham

We have some upcoming events that we are planning:
AAJA approached BABJ to do joint event with Mayor Marty Walsh on March 3, 2015 at Koy Boston. It will be a casual off-the-record event.

We are also planning a meeting on March 5, 2015 at Channel 4 that will include a panel discussion.
– March is women’s history month so the plan is to have a panel of local women journalists talk about their experiences.
– Suggestion: We should have also include younger journalists on the panel, in addition to veterans
– We should discuss the lack of young black women journalists in Boston.

Ideas for future events:
Gary Washburn wants to do an event focused on teaching journalism students basic professional development skills. (How to present themselves professionally, use social media properly and transition into the workplace well.)
– Michelle Johnson said she’s had discussions with folks at BU about doing something similar for students. She suggest doing outreach to other schools. They are looking at doing something in April.
– Next: Step Michelle will follow up to see how far the planning is for the BU event and how we may be able to collaborate.

Other issues/ideas for the group:
Gary wants to know if our organization should serve as a watchdog on issues of race and gender in this city. Does the group feel this way? Is this something we should look at as an organization when issues of discrimination or disparities come up in the local media industry?
– Suggestion: Do an audit of the number of black journalists there are locally.

How can we share jobs with black journalists so we can get more diverse applicants? And particularly, how can we get more young black job applicants?
– Suggestions: create a jobs newsletter, be active on different listservs, more outreach to other groups

How can we address some of the instability in the media industry? The media business is challenging and many people are dealing with job troubles.
– Suggestion: Have a mental health professional or expert come talk to people about dealing with job stress, work-life balance, and taking care of your health. Discussion on how to stay ahead at work and keep your sanity in the workplace.

Michelle is part of a network of certified Google trainers and suggests doing a Google workshop for our members.
– It will be a hands-on workshop on Google tools
– It could be part of a BABJ meeting. In the future maybe we should combine meetings with events.

We should organize a pre-NABJ convention gathering this year
– It will be a social meetup before the convention
– Can discuss what to expect from NABJ for first-timers & students