Each organization gets to vote for two candidates.
The election period for APSE first and second vice president is open.
Because of extenuating circumstances, there is no second VP to automatically move up to the first VP position at the June conference.
So, two VP positions will be filled by this election.
Important: Each eligible news organization should vote for two (2) people. This is according to Bylaw 3F, Paragraph 5
The top vote-getter will become first vice president, and the second-leading vote-getter will become second vice president and the end of the June conference in Charlotte.
To vote, send your two choices to Executive Director Jack Berninger at firstname.lastname@example.org . (Voting for third VP will be done separately).
The deadline to vote is March 31.
Bios of the candidates – John Bednarowski, Ed Guzman, Loren Nelson, Michael Peters, Jeff Rosen – are below in alphabetical order.
News organization: Marietta Daily Journal
Background: Became sports editor of the Marietta Daily Journal in 2006. Since then took high school sports, especially high school football to the next level.
Cobb Football Friday, our high school football franchise, along with Kickoff, our annual football preview issues have become a driving force and the advertising revenue they generate have allowed us to build our section and department.
Now, we get to prepare for Kennesaw State’s drive toward becoming a Division I FCS power and the eventual arrival of the Atlanta Braves in our county in 2017.
I began my career while still in college at UAB and worked as a stringer for former APSE president Tim Stephens at the now-defunct Birmingham Post Herald. From there I went to the St. Clair News-Aegis in Pell City, Ala., where I received the true taste of what it is like to work for a small city newspaper. In addition to being a one-man sports department, I got my fill of local government, community features and advertorials.
After leaving the News-Aegis in the summer of 2003, I worked as a freelance writer for the Birmingham News and then was hired as a sports writer at the Gadsden Times in Gadsden, Ala. I was the final reporter hired by Alabama sports writing legend Jimmy Smothers.
APSE experience: I joined APSE in 2007. I was Southeast Region vice chair from 2008-10 and then region chair from 2010-12.
I was elected APSE Third Vice President in 2014 and will conclude my two-year term at the summer convention in Charlotte.
I have been a contest judge the past eight years and will attend my eighth national convention in June.
At the annual conventions, I have had the privilege of serving on panels and moderating different workshops.
Objective: As our industry continues to evolve, we have to make sure that APSE evolves with it. As a group, we need foresee current trends and share the ideas that come from them. We need to make sure our organization maximizes its membership opportunities by finding new members, recruit former members back into the fold, and reach out to the younger generations that are joining our profession.
Quotable: “Make it easy for the readers.”
News organization: The Seattle Times
Background: Currently an Assistant Sports Editor at The Seattle Times, where I’ve been since March 2013. Previously worked at The Washington Post for seven-plus years (2006-13) in a variety of roles, including Night Sports Editor, Sports Copy Chief and Assistant High School Sports Editor. Also worked at The New York Times (2002-05) as a Staff Editor and at The Oregonian (1999-2002) as a sports reporter and editor. Graduated from Stanford in 1999 with a degree in history. Originally from Los Angeles. Fluent in Spanish.
APSE experience: Was part of the inaugural class of APSE’s Diversity Fellowship in 2011-12. Took part in winter conference judging in 2012 and helped lead a workshop at the 2012 APSE convention in Chicago. Served as Northwest Region Chair from 2014-16. Part of an organization that won an APSE “triple crown” in 2014 and our first-ever “grand slam” in 2015.
Objective: To help APSE maintain its place as an essential journalistic organization by successfully leading and navigating amidst the change and evolution in our industry. And doing so with great integrity, inclusiveness and joy.
Quotable: “APSE has always been a source of great inspiration for me, dating to my participation in the Sports Journalism Institute in 1998 while still an undergraduate, to my time as a Diversity Fellow in 2011-12, through to the present day. It’s opened doors for me throughout my career. And in doing so, I’ve developed relationships and friendships that I hold near and dear to my heart. I want to give back to the organization that has given me so much. Thank you for your consideration.”
News organization: Minnesota Hockey Hub
Background: Native of International Falls, Minnesota, the Canadian border town which proudly bills itself as the “Icebox of the Nation.” First newspaper job came as teenager developing film (back in the days of darkrooms) for my hometown paper. Graduated from Saint Mary’s University in Winona, Minnesota, and worked as sports editor at small papers in southern Minnesota (St. Peter and Owatonna) and assistant sports editor in Eau Claire, Wisconsin, before heading to Florida to lead the Bradenton Herald sports department. Worked as sports editor of the North County Times in suburban San Diego, helping section win its only APSE Triple Crown. Returned to Minnesota to work as editor for sports technology startup Sport Ngin, becoming company’s 15th employee (Sport Ngin has since grown to more than 250 employees). As managing editor, helped build the Minnesota Hockey Hub into what is believed to be the nation’s most heavily trafficked regional, single-sport high school website. Grew Sport Ngin’s community of users (Sport Ngin User Group) from zero to more than 1,500 in 20-month span starting in August of 2014.
APSE experience: Joined APSE in 2003. Currently closing out two-year stint as Great Lakes Region chair. Also served, briefly, as West Region vice chair before moving from San Diego to Minnesota. I’ve been a contest judge at least 10 times and attended all but a handful of summer conferences since joining APSE. Served as a judge in the digital contest four times, twice as a group chair. Devised and executed plan to post student member bios on APSE website, a year-plus initiative that helped grow membership and drive interest from college students and their APSE sponsors. Have live streamed the last three Great Lakes Region meetings and APSE Conferences. Created a microsite (apsevideo.sportngin.com) to house streaming and archived video from APSE events.
Objective: Grow membership. Sounds easy enough, but this is can only be achieved through an organized and relentless effort to identify and recruit prospective organizations — and to re-recruit former members. Before those coordinated recruiting efforts begin, we need to establish and clearly communicate the value of joining the APSE community.
As an example, here’s what we could offer for student members:
- Reporting and writing critiques
- Advice on how to sharpen editing and management skills
- Resume and cover letter critiques
- Free entry into a digital resume bank
- Sessions on how to improve networking and interviewing skills
- Mentorship pairing with veteran APSE member
- Member-only access to live and archived video workshops
- Student-focused sessions at all regional meetings, with college campuses being the preferred sites
In addition to our regional meetings, Summer Conference and contest judging opportunities, we could offer regular, interactive video-only workshop and training opportunities for all members. Those sessions could then be archived as part of a growing library of member-only resources.
Growing membership has to be an organization-wide effort. I’d enlist the help of outreach veterans such as Phil Kaplan and Jack Berninger, for starters. With the leadership of Gerry Ahern, Tim Stephens and Ron Fritz, continued growth of their student membership initiatives would be crucial.
As part of our membership drive, we’d need to make the functionality, content and design of the APSE website a priority. In many cases, this is the first impression prospective members have with our organization. We need a mobile responsive site featuring an easy-to-navigate digital membership directory, for starters. Our publishing schedule, with regular features and news items and other content provided through the coordination of region chairs, also needs to be grown. That content could then be packaged in a monthly email newsletter.
Quotable: “Risk something or forever sit with your dreams.” — Herb Brooks
News organization: Tulsa (Okla.) World
Background: Began as a high school writer for the Bryan-College Station (Texas) Eagle in 1993. Took my first job as a sports editor with the Galveston County (Texas) Daily News in 2000. Also served as sports editor at the Beaumont (Texas) Enterprise, high school sports editor at the Houston Chronicle, and for the last four-plus years, sports editor at the Tulsa World.
APSE Experience: Great Plains Region chair, 2014-present
Southwest Region chair, 2005-2007; Oklahoma State APSE student chapter professional advisor, 2015-present; Contest judging: 2002, 2004-07, 2010, 2016 (remote judging); summer convention: 2003-07, 2012-15
Objective: APSE has been very important to my career. This organization has helped me meet and develop relationships with the people who are now my closest friends and most trusted mentors in the business. APSE provided a place of first contact with other sports editors even when those editors worked in the same newspaper chain or just a few hours down the road. Our members provide the strength of our organization. So it’s important we make APSE just as vital to those coming up in the business as it has been for us. We can do that by continuing to strengthen our Diversity Fellowship program, get more small paper sports editors involved at the regional level and provide more incentive for student membership (through a student contest or student involvement in contest judging).
Quotable: “APSE’s strongest attribute is its membership. We need to make sure our organization is as invaluable to the next wave of great sports journalists as it has been for those of us involved now.”
News organization: The Kansas City Star
Background: I’ve been AME/Sports at The Star since December 2010. Before that, I spent six-plus years at the Houston Chronicle, a job I landed thanks to acquaintances made through APSE: Fred Faour and Dan Cunningham hired me in 2004 first as a sports copy editor, then weekend editor, and finally deputy editor. I got my start in the business in 1995 at the Chaffee County Times, a weekly paper in Colorado. I covered everything from politics (including secret meetings that violated the state’s sunshine law and led to recall of the mayor) to business and, of course, sports. My first sports editor job was at the Times-News of Twin Falls, Idaho, and I held the same position at the Kitsap Sun in Bremerton, Wash., before moving to Houston.
APSE experience: Those loud kids you’ve heard at our summer conferences? Mine. (Thanks for your patience through the years.) Since about 2009, I’ve organized the annual APSE Commissioners Meetings in New York City, a vital opportunity for our members to meet directly with heads of the various pro sports leagues, NCAA and USOC regarding issues of the day. I’m proud to say that last year’s attendance at the Commissioners Meetings topped 40, which I believe is an all-time high. I’ve also served as region chair of the Great Plains Region, helping fellow journalists grow via workshops, networking and the sharing of ideas. My first APSE event was a dual-region meeting in the late 1990s that included both the West and Northwest regions in Las Vegas. The kids didn’t attend that one.
Objective: Stewardship and growth of our organization, continuing education for current members, redoubled emphasis on diversity. Of the various APSE honors The Star won this year, none was more gratifying than Top 10 Website. Each of us MUST dominate in this space. To help you do that, I would like to establish a series of quarterly webinars on the APSE site via which we’ll share the brightest digital and social innovations from our respective shops. Tech is changing too quickly for us to hold just one “best practices” panel each summer. We’re engaged in the fight of our lives, and if elected I would pledge to better equip you to win this war every day.
As technology changes, fellowship remains the core of everything we do at APSE. I can’t begin to name all of my APSE mentors, but high on the list are recent past presidents Mike Fannin, Gerry Ahern, Phil Kaplan, Mary Byrne, Garry Howard, Tim Stephens and Mike Sherman. If elected, I promise to follow their lead, and that of those who came before them, as a tireless promoter of all APSE offers. Any sports editor who’s not currently a member should want to be.
Finally, despite our best efforts, we continue to struggle with diversity. I tip my cap to SJI and Jorge Rojas and our various diversity initiatives, but I would challenge you to think outside the box with every job for which you’re able to hire … especially leadership positions. Got an opening? Interview a diverse cast. Groups such as AWSM and NABJ are happy to help with names. Each of us can make a difference.
Quotable: “The future does not fit in the containers of the past.” – Rishad Tobaccowala, marketing strategist (sounds like a made-up name, I know, but it’s a hell of a quote for our industry today)