Michelle Faul, a veteran foreign correspondent who heads the Associated Press bureau in Lagos, Nigeria, interviewed liberated prisoners of the terrorist group Boko Haram in stories widely circulated around the globe last weekend. Boko Haram's abductions had been the focus of a worldwide campaign last year to "#Bring Back Our Girls."
"I was the only foreign journalist when the women arrived at the camp," Faul messaged Journal-isms, though "there were at least a dozen Nigerian journalists, including stringers for VOA and BBC Hausa Service."
AP spokesman Paul Colford added in an email, "The continuing interest of international broadcasters in speaking with Michelle indicates that her reporting in the region, and her strong reporting on Boko Haram in particular, continue to have an impact."
Faul's Sunday dispatch began, "Even with the crackle of gunfire signaling rescuers were near, the horrors did not end: Boko Haram fighters stoned captives to death, some girls and women were crushed by an armored car and three died when a land mine exploded as they walked to freedom.
"Through tears, smiles and eyes filled with pain, the survivors of months in the hands of the Islamic extremists told their tragic stories to The Associated Press on Sunday, their first day out of the war zone.
" 'We just have to give praise to God that we are alive, those of us who have survived,' said 27-year-old Lami Musa as she cradled her 5-day-old baby girl.
"She was among 275 girls, women and their young children, many bewildered and traumatized, who were getting medical care and being registered a day after making it to safety.
"Nigeria's military said it has freed nearly 700 Boko Haram captives in the past week. It is still unclear if any of them were among the so-called 'Chibok girls,' whose mass abduction from their school a year ago sparked outrage worldwide and a campaign for their freedom under the hashtag #BringBackOurGirls. . . ."
BBC: Interview with Michelle Faul: Horror stories told by former Boko Haram captives.
Michelle Faul, Associated Press: Nigeria: Nearly 300 freed women, children led to safety
Dori Maynard Kept the Faith
The True Believers in newsroom diversity gathered to pay tribute to Dori J. Maynard Monday night in Washington, and they heardDonald E. Graham, the longtime Washington Post publisher, say that the organization she led for 14 years — the Maynard Institute for Journalism Education — was "the best training program in the business, period."
They also heard Eric Newton, senior adviser to the president of the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, announce that the foundation would sponsor a Dori J. Maynard Award for Diversity in Journalism, to be awarded by the American Society of News Editors. The honor, to be underwritten by the Foundation for five years, comes with $2,500 and "celebrates journalism that overcomes ignorance, stereotypes, intolerance, racism or hate. Winning entries will bridge any or all of the social fault lines of race, gender, class, generation and geography."
The memorial service at the Knight Conference Center at the Newseum on Pennsylvania Avenue, in walking distance from the Capitol, was attended by about 200 people who honored not just Maynard, but also the family and the ideas that shaped her.
"I believe in these family dynasties," joked Graham, whose family held a managerial role with the Post for more than eight decades when its last such member stepped down in October.
Earl Caldwell, a co-founder of the Maynard Institute, which was organized in 1977, said he had known Dori Maynard for 50 years. "We were a family. Her father was the first person I ever met the same color as me wanting to do the same kind of work."
"It was the Church of Maynard," Denise Bridges, a Maynard Institute graduate, told Journal-isms.
"These people knew Dori for years, so it wasn't just a patronizing set of comments," said Reginald Stuart, another veteran who recruited for the McClatchy Co.
Though MIJE has always been multicultural, others said it reminded them of earlier meetings of the National Association of Black Journalists, when the cause of integrating newsrooms was front and center.
The spirit of the room took attendees back to the days when the Institute declared its determination to eliminate from the vocabulary of hiring managers the phrase "can't find anybody qualified."
Graham said, "No graduate school of journalism — no graduate school of business contributed to the news industry what the Maynard program did. Bob, Nancy and Dori and everyone who contributes has done something absolutely magnificent, and I'm so proud to have been associated with you and with her."
Kevin Merida, managing editor of the Washington Post, a Maynard Institute grad and new member of the Maynard Institute board, added another reason to praise the institute and its training of hundreds of reporters, copy editors and news managers. "It taught you how to think. The thinking part of this business is probably the most important part," he said from the stage.
Bob Maynard and his wife, Nancy Hicks Maynard, were leaders in the Institute's formative years. Dori Maynard, who died in February at 56 of lung cancer, became president in 2001 and kept her father's vision contemporary. The plight of African American men, for example, was a particular concern.
By coincidence, Monday's service took place as the nation contemplated a string of fatal shootings by police. Maynard had written that she feared for her brothers, Alex and David Maynard, and linked that fear to media images.
In a 2009 column read at the service by Nolan McCaskill, a one-year Politico reporting fellow and graduate of a joint program with Politico, Maynard and American University, Maynard wrote:
"Their invisibility does us all a disservice.
"By failing to recognize them we paint a distorted picture of African-American life. Equally importantly, we rob ourselves of important role models. If we want to change behavior it might be helpful to point out some positive examples. . . . It is so much easier to aspire to that which we know is possible."
Shawn Dove, CEO of the Campaign for Black Male Achievement, with whom the Maynard Institute collaborated, was scheduled to be on the program but was called away as President Obama promoted his "My Brother's Keeper" initiative in New York.
Geneva Overholser, senior fellow and consultant at the Democracy Fund and former director of the USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism, said of her friend Dori, "She helped people take off their blindfolds. . . . The assumption "that black men have a fair shot . . . . this is a huge failure of journalism and a plain old ignoring of the facts. Dori would be holding us accountable."
Overholser also said, "I came to know Dori on board after board. Maybe they'd figured a couple of women would be good." That was after boards got past the tokenism of including one person of color and one woman.
Maynard's personal qualities — her wit, her tenacity, her choices in food and her attention to when Mercury was in retrograde, and, as Overholser quipped, her "great legs" — were of course part of the tributes.
But the quality that loomed largest was Maynard's tenacity in service of diversity. Caldwell noted that Maynard was a child at the release in 1968 of the Kerner Commission report on the causes of the racial uprisings of the late 1960s. Her father's influence was undeniable. "In 1968, she was 10 years old, and she read the whole Kerner Commission report," Caldwell said. "This was in Dori's ear when she was 10."
Mark Trahant, chairman of the Maynard Institute board, said the Institute struggled for ways to keep the new online journalism world from replicating the lack of diversity in the traditional media. "We should have been able to fix the problem before it [locked] in," he said.
Martin G. Reynolds, another board member and senior editor for community engagement and training for the Bay Area News Group, recounted Maynard's last day, when she insisted on participating in a conference call despite her worsening condition. Trahant echoed Reynolds: "She did not want to dwell on her mortality. There was too much to do."
Other speakers agreed. Marisa Porto, vice president, content for the Daily Press Media/Tribune Co. and a Maynard grad, told the assembly that "the best way to keep her memory alive is to keep training the next generation."
Merida said it, too. Diversity and inclusion "should be core and central to who we are because that's how we live."
The service ended with an a capella rendition of "Amazing Grace."
"An often-cited criticism: The police force is too white," Yolanda Young wrote Monday for On Being a Black Lawyer. "Well, the legal profession is even whiter and the job much more subjective."
Young also wrote, "In a rash of high profile police killings of unarmed black males — John Crawford III, Michael Brown, Eric Garner, Tamir Rice, and Walter Scott — white prosecutors appeared reluctant to vigorously pursue indictments, even when facts were highly disputed. Reports by Talking Points Memo, The Wall Street Journal and The Washington Post conclude that almost none of the police officers who kill roughly 1,000 people each year is ever charged.
"By contrast, Marilyn Mosby joins a strong block of black prosecutors, including U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch and her predecessor Eric Holder, who are able to respect and support law enforcement without ignoring the complexities of police power. Mosby is Baltimore City state’s attorney.
"As Brooklyn's district attorney, Kenneth Thompson put it in addressing an indictment against a police officer who shot an unarmed man in a stairwell: 'Acts of police brutality are not only crimes against the individual victim but also are attacks on the communities in which they occur…The people of Brooklyn have voted for their District Attorney to keep them safe from all crimes, including those of police brutality.' Thompson is African American."
Young also wrote, "The 2010 national study 'Illegal Racial Discrimination in Jury Selection: A Continuing Legacy' by the Equal Justice Initiative uncovered 'shocking evidence of racial discrimination in jury selection in every [southern] state.' The study found evidence that some state and local prosecutors were actually trained to exclude people on the basis of race and instructed on how to conceal their racial bias.
"While unconscious-bias training and stricter rules might improve the situation, the best way to stem discrimination is to have more black faces in the room. This was the sentiment shared by black prosecutors in a 2010 district attorney roundtable discussion.
"As former National Black Prosecutors Association president Bruce Brown put it, 'When you have African-Americans in the room making decisions, challenging decisions, folks are forced to look at the motives behind what they're doing, and it's not until all those motives are questioned that we make sure that our system is working, not only effectively, but also efficiently and fairly for everyone involved.' . . . ."
Danielle Allen, Washington Post: Why the dispossessed riot
Charles M. Blow, New York Times: Restoring Faith in Justice
Shawn Carrié, the Guardian: My 49 hours in a Baltimore cell — for being a reporter
James E. Causey, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Gray did nothing criminal
James E. Causey, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: President Barack Obama's big fail on Baltimore violence
Kat Chow, NPR "Code Switch": Reaction To Baltimore Prosecutor Marilyn Mosby's Remarks
Jelani Cobb, the New Yorker: City Life
Ana Marie Cox, Daily Beast: Why Fox News Had The Best Baltimore Coverage
Jarvis DeBerry, NOLA.com | the Times-Picayune: Surprised to see black cops arrested in Freddie Gray's death? Don't be.
Gene Demby, NPR "Code Switch: Baltimore's Marilyn Mosby Introduces Plot Twist With Surprise Charges Against Cops
Justin George, Baltimore Sun: Exclusive look inside the Freddie Gray investigation
Allen Johnson, News & Record, Greensboro, N.C.: Together yet apart? Diversity and segregation on campus
Colbert I. King, Washington Post: Why the shock and dread over Baltimore?
Dena Levitz, International Journalists' Network: Tips for reporters covering riots in Baltimore and beyond
Damon Marx, FishbowlDC: Josh Earnest: Obama Will Not Revise 'Thugs and Criminals' Comment
Evan McMurry, Mediaite: Fmr. CNN Anchor Soledad O’Brien to Journalists: Stop Saying 'Thug'
Mary Mitchell, Chicago Sun-Times: How to stop police brutality
Phillip Morris, Plain Dealer, Cleveland: Baltimore is on a rough ride, with more cities likely to follow
Askia Muhammad, Washington Informer: Face to Face with Racial Hatred in Baltimore and Beyond
Tony Norman, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: Plenty of villains surround 'hero mom'
Chris O'Shea, FishbowlNY: A Moving NY Times Magazine Cover
Clarence Page, Chicago Tribune: Angry mom against the 'thugs'
Leonard Pitts Jr., Miami Herald: It takes more than street protests to produce change
Shadi Rahimi, Poynter Institute: How AJ+ reported from Baltimore using only mobile phones
Rochelle Riley, Detroit Free Press: From Baltimore to Detroit, same fears of police passed down
Kevin Rector, Baltimore Sun: Protesters in Hampden break curfew (for a few minutes) to make a point
Eugene Robinson, Washington Post: Freddie Gray never had a chance
Summer Robinson, Baltimore Sun: A no-win situation in Baltimore
Rubén Rosario, Pioneer Press, St. Paul, Minn.: In Baltimore, real heroes and real problems that deserve attention
Rick Sanchez, Fox News Latino: Maybe yelling at reporters is not a bad thing
Bob Ray Sanders, Star-Telegram, Fort Worth, Texas: A mother’s love shown through her discipline
E. R. Shipp, Afro Newspapers: Justice for Freddie Gray is a Long Way Off
Torraine Walker, HuffPost BlackVoices: How Mainstream Media Fiddled While Baltimore Burned and Got It Wrong When They Showed Up
DeWayne Wickham, USA Today: Gray's death issue of police character more than color, activist says (video)
Juan Williams, Daily News, New York: Stop copping out: Despite officers' abuses in Baltimore and elsewhere, we must not forget that active policing is absolutely vital to the future of inner-city America
L. Joy Williams and Rashad Robinson, Daily News, New York: Gov. Cuomo: It's time to prove that you think black lives matter
Lilly Workneh, Huffington Post: Baltimore Photographer Captures Iconic Images Of Protests: 'I Want People To See The Truth'
David Zurawik, Baltimore Sun: Links between TV reporter, prosecutor's office are Ethics 101 example
Former board member Sarah J. Glover, social media editor for NBC-Owned Television Stations, based in New York, and Mira Lowe, senior features editor for CNN Digital, based in Atlanta, have been certified as candidates for president of the National Association of Black Journalists, NABJ announced on Monday.
Two candidates are challenging incumbent Dedrick Russell, a reporter for WBTV-TV in Charlotte, N.C., for vice president-broadcast: Galen Gordon, coordinating producer ESPN, Bristol, Conn., and Dorothy Tucker, reporter at WBBM-TV in Chicago and a former board member.
Marlon Walker, a reporter at the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, is running unopposed for vice president-print.
Mark Luckie, partnerships manager for journalism and news at Twitter, and Benét Wilson, owner/founder/editor of Aviation Queen LLC in Baltimore are vying for the newly created position of vice president-digital.
Sherlon Christie, a sports reporter at the Asbury Park Press in Neptune, N.J., and current board member, is running unopposed for secretary.
For treasurer, Drew Berry, a former Finance Committee chairman, president of Drew Berry & Associates, LLC, and critic of current board members, faces NABJ veteran Greg Morrison, assignment editor for the Affiliate Content Center at CNN in Atlanta.
Dave Jordan, investigative reporter at WSPA-TV in Spartanburg, S.C., is running unopposed for parliamentarian.
Other contests will fill seats for regional board representatives and academic, media-related and student representative.
Members may vote electronically from July 1 to Aug. 7.
Glover, a former president of the Philadelphia Association of Black Journalists and NABJ board secretary, ran unsuccessfully for president in 2013 against then-vice president/broadcast Bob Butler. Lowe, also a former editor of Jet magazine, has not served on the NABJ board. She is the wife of Herbert Lowe, who was NABJ president from 2003 to 2005 and called her then "the first lady of NABJ."
Mark Hinojosa, who joined the Detroit News as new-media director in 2008 after being laid off as associate managing editor for multimedia at the Chicago Tribune, has been laid off again.
"They laid off three of us, a designer and our librarian," Hinojosa messaged Journal-isms on Monday. "Looking at what's out there, but I'm not sure I will do another newsroom."
Hinojosa posted the following to his Facebook friends Monday:
"Couple of weeks ago The Detroit News decided it did not need my services. Here is the note I send to the newsroom.
"To my friends at The News:
"There is one constant in life; things go on. I know you all will continue to tell Detroit's story through an unblinking, yet compassionate, eye. You will find the beauty in its revival, but not be blinded by the radiance of the new. You will continue to fight for the entire city, rich and poor alike. Unfortunately, I will not be there to add my small contribution to your efforts, and that is a great sadness for me.
"I joined The News six years and seven months ago. I came as a refugee and was received as a friend by so many. You did me many kindnesses, too many to list here, but all of them are remembered and cherished.
"Once, after one particularly difficult week, my children asked me why I stayed in newspapers. I flippantly answered, 'If I don’t do it, who will?' But isn't that the truth of it? If we don't do it, who will? Who else will stand for the readers? Who else will stand against wrongs and corruption in this city? I know it sounds corny, but I believe what we do matters in the lives of our readers.
"Somewhere in the city, someone is putting a dollar on a counter and walking [away] with what should be our best efforts. They don't care how hard it was to get the story, how crappy our software is or how mean your editor was to you. They choose us because they trust us to tell them what is important. It is a trust that has been built for nearly 100 years. That is why I did this job.
"These last six years and seven months were not always easy or fun, but they where always good. They were good because I spent them you, the staff of The Detroit News.