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Archive for the ‘George Mason Award’ Category

The Coleman Bridge over the James River at Yorktown.

 

SPJ Virginia Pro Chapter gathered by the James River for the 2016 George Mason Award Brunch on Sunday, Oct. 30. About two dozen members met at Riverwalk Restaurant in Yorktown to honor George Mason Award recipient Dave Ress.

A reporter at The Daily Press and noted Virginia freedom of information and open government expert, Ress accepted the award from chapter President Robyn Sidersky. Betsy Edwards, executive director of the Virginia Press Association and the person who nominated Ress, remarked on his willingness to share his knowledge with fellow reporters and open government advocates.

Dave Ress speaks during the George Mason Award Brunch.

Dave Ress speaks during the George Mason Award Brunch.

The Mason Award, established in 1964, is presented annually to an individual for outstanding contributions to Virginia journalism. It is named for the principal author of the Virginia Declaration of Rights, the forerunner of the Bill of Rights.

Catherine Wiedman, a senior at Emory & Henry and recipient of the Virginia SPJ/SDX Educational Foundation’s fellowship, was also honored during the event.

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Catherine Wiedman, Dave Ress, Clissa England, Paul Fletcher and Robyn Sidersky at the brunch.

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National Immediate Past President Paul Fletcher shares his thoughts.

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT
: Robyn Sidersky
President, Virginia Pro Chapter SPJ
Phone: (954) 296-4407
Email: robyn.sidersky@gmail.com
www.spjva.com

 Buy tickets here.

Ress to Receive 2016 George Mason Award

 

RICHMOND, VA – (Oct 12, 2016) – Dave Ress, an investigative reporter with The Daily Press (Newport News), has been selected as recipient of the 2016 George Mason Award by the Virginia Pro Chapter, Society of Professional Journalists.

The Mason award, established in 1964, is presented annually to an individual for outstanding contributions to Virginia journalism. It is named for the principal author of the Virginia Declaration of Rights, the forerunner of the Bill of Rights.

Ress will be honored during a luncheon Sunday, Oct. 30 at Riverwalk Restaurant, 323 Water St., Suite 1-A, Yorktown. Ticket information will be available soon at www.spjva.com.

Ress has spent more than two decades in Virginia newsrooms. His efforts to press lawmakers and public officials on public information, records and transparency issues is matched by his willingness to share what he has learned.

“His extensive knowledge of FOIA has been invaluable in his job for The Daily Press – but even more invaluable is David’s willingness to share this knowledge with reporters across the Commonwealth,” wrote Betsy Edwards in her nomination letter. “His commitment to open government will make a real difference in how the Freedom of Information Act in Virginia is applied in years to come.”

Past recipients of the award include journalists, educators, attorneys and others who have made lasting impacts in Virginia. Recent recipients and more information are available at https://spjva.com/2015/02/01/the-george-mason-award/.

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The Virginia Pro Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists honored retired Virginia Commonwealth University professor Wilma Wirt Wednesday night in Richmond.

Wirt is the 52nd winner of the annual award honoring journalists for their contributions to Virginia journalism.

Wilma Wirt accepts the George Mason Award in Richmond on Sept. 9.

Wilma Wirt accepts the George Mason Award in Richmond on Sept. 9.

The chapter also awarded Wayne Farrar, the recently retired news director of WCVE, the George and Francine Crutchfield Distinguished Service Award.

Past Chapter President and National President-Elect Paul Fletcher presents Wayne Farrar with the George and Francine Crutchfield Distinguished Service Award Sept. 9.

Past Chapter President and National President-Elect Paul Fletcher presents Wayne Farrar with the George and Francine Crutchfield Distinguished Service Award Sept. 9.

The SPJ/SDX Foundation presented two Virginia undergraduate journalism students with fellowships. Athena Cao is a senior at Washington & Lee University and won the Virginia SPJ/SDX Fellowship. Tyler Byrum is a senior at George Mason University and was awarded the George T. Bowles Memorial Fellowship. Cao spent her summer interning at The Charlotte (N.C.) Observer and Byrum spent his summer at WAVY-TV 10 in Hampton Roads.

Finally, the society elected new officers for the 2015-2016 year.

The newly-elected board members are:

President (1st one-year term): Robyn Sidersky, The Free Lance-Star
Vice President (1st one-year term): Peter Vieth, Virginia Lawyers Media
Secretary (3rd one-year term): Jeff South, Virginia Commonwealth University
Treasurer (1st one-year term): Rachel DePompa, WWBT-TV 12
Immediate Past President: Patrick Kane, Virginia Commonwealth University
Board of Directors:
Terms expiring 2016: Greg Gilligan, Richmond Times-Dispatch (completing Cara Modisett’s term); Jordan Fifer, Virginia Tech Broadcast Communications (completing Rachel DePompa’s term)
Term expiring 2017: Brad Jenkins, James Madison University (completing Peter Vieth’s term)
Terms expiring 2018: Daniel Finnegan, Richmond Times-Dispatch; Nicole Livas, WAVY-TV 10; Shawn Day, The Virginian-Pilot

The board members who attended Thursday were (from left) Caroline Cardwell, Shawn Day, Robyn Sidersky, Greg Gilligan, Nicole Livas, Jeff South, Wayne Farrar, and Peter Vieth.

The board members who attended Wednesday were (from left) Caroline Cardwell, Shawn Day, Robyn Sidersky, Greg Gilligan, Nicole Livas, Jeff South, Wayne Farrar, and Peter Vieth.

Two board members were also elected to serve on the SPJ/SDX Foundation Board. Dorothy Abernathy of the Associated Press,  and Caroline Cardwell of the Virginia Retirement System, will serve through 2018.

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The George Mason Award

Annually since 1964, the Society of Professional Journalists Virginia Pro Chapter gathers to honor a journalist or friend of journalism of exceptional character and dedication to the craft.
The George Mason Award is named for the Virginian who attended the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia in 1787, but refused to sign the Constitution because it did not include a declaration of individual rights. The Bill of Rights, eventually added to the document, is based on the Virginia Declaration of Rights, written principally by Mason in 1776.

The George Mason Memorial in DC
The George Mason Memorial in DC

Nominations for the award are sought each winter. Recent George Mason Award recipients include:

2016 Dave Ress, The Daily Press
2015 Wilma Wirt, retired Virginia Commonwealth University professor
2014 Bob Brown, The Richmond Times-Dispatch
2013 Dick Hammerstrom, The Free-Lance Star
2012 J. Stewart Bryan III, Media General
2011 Craig Merritt, Christian & Barton
2010 Michael Paul Williams, The Richmond Times-Dispatch
2009 Bill Baskervill, Associated Press Virginia
2008 David M. Poole, Virginia Public Access Project
2007 Lawrence K. Emerson, The Culpeper Citizen and The Fauquier Citizen
2006 James Kendrick Woodley III, The Farmville Herald
2005 James A. Mann, The Free-Lance Star
2004 J Malcolm Pace III, The Herald-Progress (posthumous)
2003 Hampden H. Smith III, Washington & Lee University

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Society of Professional Journalists, Virginia Pro Chapter

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

July 14, 2014

Contact: Chapter VP Robyn Sidersky, 954-296-4407, or robyn.sidersky@gmail.com

BROWN TO RECEIVE 2013 GEORGE MASON AWARD

Richmond Times-Dispatch photojournalist Bob Brown has been selected as recipient of the 2014 George Mason Award, given by the Society of Professional Journalists, Virginia Pro Chapter.

The Mason award, established in 1964, is presented to an individual for outstanding contributions to Virginia journalism. It is named for the principal author of the Virginia Declaration of Rights, the forerunner of the Bill of Rights in the Constitution.

Brown is known, among other things, as the dean of photographers covering the General Assembly, starting in 1970. He joined the Times-Dispatch in 1968, and except for a brief stint in Charlotte from 1979-80, has been at the newspaper ever since. He was named senior photographer in 1992.

He was voted Virginia Press Photographer of the Year three times, and he has won numerous national, regional and state first-place awards. In 2005, he was the first photojournalist inducted into the Virginia Communications Hall of Fame.

Brown is the author of two books, “Capitol Comics, a Humorous Look at the Virginia Legislature” (1984), and “Back Roads: People, Places, and Pie from Around Virginia” (2014), which he coauthored with Times-Dispatch columnist Bill Lohmann.

SPJVA will present the Mason award to Brown at its 51st George Mason Banquet on Sept.16 at the Capital Ale House in Richmond. The chapter and its Virginia SPJ,SDX Educational Foundation will also present two scholarships to Virginia college journalists. Tickets are $50 a person, which includes two drink tickets. There will be a silent auction benefiting the scholarship foundation.

For reservations and information, contact Robyn Sidersky at 954-296-4407 or robyn.sidersky@gmail.com.

 

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The Herald-Progress has a touching tribute to late publisher, Joseph Malcolm “Jay” Pace III. Virginia Pro SPJ posthumously awarded Pace our highest honor, the George Mason Award, in 2004.

 

 

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Virginia Pro Chapter, Society of Professional Journalists Board of Directors Meeting

6 p.m., Sept. 21, 2011
Virginia Lawyers Weekly, Richmond

Present: Paul F., Caroline C., Guy F., A.J. L. Pat K. late. Brian E. teleconference

New Business:
Discussed panel with Ray Boone, Megan Rhyne, others covering topic of access & use of pool photo/
video.

Discussed support for AP Day at the Capitol. Pat thinks we’ve been the breakfast sponsor.

Discussed related groups in October – Virginia Press Women, National Newspapers Week, James
River Writers Conference, VCOG Annual Conference

Paul moved to provide VCOG with $250 funding. Pat second. Unanimous.

Contact Elon about Spring Conference

Discussed change of location, date (perhaps May) for George Mason Banquet

Board meeting and orientation for October 8 at WCVE

Contact Kevin Clay for social program – October ideally

PK will shoot membership message about EIJ 2011

A.J. – Sunshine week writing FOIA requests

$500 to Jepson School at University of Richmond – co-sponsor
Gifts for 11 panelists, $20 card to B&N
Caroline C. moved, minutes approved unanimously

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