Photo credit: Masthead photo courtesy of Greg Wagoner Photography via Creative Commons license on Flickr.


Greetings from the Indiana Professional chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists. Our organization works to promote and protect First Amendment freedoms and encourages training for current and future journalists by offering professional development opportunities and college journalism scholarships. We also recognize the accomplishments of the state’s top journalists through the annual Best of Indiana Journalism Awards. Our chapter is proud to represent journalists in Indiana, birthplace and modern-day home of the national Society of Professional Journalists.

Get all our latest news below and  use the menus to link to information about scholarships, contests and our events. Thanks for visiting.

Congrats to all of our 2013 Winners!

Congratulations to all the winners in SPJ’s Best in Indiana contest.

We’re truly proud of all the amazing work our fellow Hoosier journalists have done and thrilled that so many of you could join us at the annual awards dinner to be honored.

We’d love to list all the winners here, but there are just way too many! But you can download a PDF of the winners and share them!

Congrats again to all the winners and everyone who entered.

Enter now for Best in Indiana Journalism Awards

The 34th annual Best in Indiana Journalism Awards is now accepting entries.

The contest has been completely updated, with simpler rules and categories. Visit the new awards site to download the contest brochure and submit entries online.

SPJ members and non-members are encouraged to participate. News organizations can submit work on behalf of their staffs, but individuals also may enter.

The entry fee is still $20 for professionals and $15 for students.

Get those entries in by Feb. 8!

Indiana Pro SPJ elects new officers

A message to Indiana Pro Chapter members from new president Tom Davies:

Thanks to all the Indiana Pro Chapter members who voted on the proposed bylaws and officers slate for 2012-13. Both were approved unanimously.

Your new chapter officers are:

President: Tom Davies, editor and reporter, The Associated Press, Indianapolis bureau

Vice President: Eric Bradner, Indiana Statehouse reporter, Evansville Courier & Press

Treasurer: John Krull, director of Franklin College’s Pulliam School of Journalism

Secretary: Chelsea Schneider, reporter, The Times of Northwest Indiana

We’re in the process of getting programs organized for the coming year, working to improve communications with chapter members and other journalists throughout Indiana and considering updates to the annual Best in Indiana Journalism contest. We hope you’ll take part in the chapter’s upcoming activities and share your ideas.

Watch for more chapter updates coming to you by email and follow the chapter on Facebook and Twitter.

National SPJ honors Pyle, two others

INDIANAPOLIS – The Society of Professional Journalists is pleased to name Sydney Schanberg, Ernie Pyle and Bob Steele as Fellows of the Society.
Being named a Fellow of the Society is the highest honor SPJ bestows upon a journalist for extraordinary contributions to the profession. Honorees receive a jeweled key and a plaque. Click here for a list of previous honorees.
The Fellows will be recognized at the President’s Installation Banquet Oct. 5 during the 2010 SPJ Convention & National Journalism Conference in Las Vegas.
Here are the details about the honorees:

National conference Oct. 3-5 in Vegas

Journalism conference in Las Vegas Oct. 3-5 – learn and explore

The Society of Professional Journalists, the nation’s most broad-based journalism organization, is holding its 2010 SPJ Convention & National Journalism Conference Oct. 3-5 in Las Vegas.
It’s the place for all journalists in all media to enhance their skills. From reporters at all levels of experience to newsroom managers, there’s programming and learning opportunities for everyone.
Follow conference developments on Twitter with hashtag #SPJ10 and on the SPJ Convention blog.

Two high school students win SPJ scholarships

The Indiana Professional Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists is pleased to announce its 2010 scholarship winners, Michelle Hu of Carmel High School and Emily Theis of Southport High School.

Hu and Theis were chosen based on a combination of their grades, extra-curricular media activities and an essay on the topic, “As a future journalist, how do you think journalists can make a difference?”

Each earns a one-time scholarship of $2,500. The chapter’s scholarships are funded by proceeds from the annual Best in Indiana Journalism competition.

Michelle Hu is a senior in the top three percent of her class at Carmel High School. She was a National Scholastic Press Association Multimedia Story of the Year finalist. In 2009, she was one of 42 attendees of J Camp, a prestigious multicultural experience for aspiring high school journalists sponsored by the Asian American Journalists Association. Michelle has worked for three years in leadership roles on Carmel’s student newspaper, HiLite. This year she served as editor-in-chief, overseeing an 80-member staff. She is also Youth Director and editor for Y-Press, a youth news media outlet. James Streisel, Michelle’s newspaper adviser at Carmel, says this about her: “She understands the news and, more importantly, the role of the media in covering that news. She understands her audience and what that audience needs and wants to know to be informed, educated and entertained.

Emily Theis is a senior at Southport High School, where she ranks seventh out of 480 students. She spent a year as a features reporter on her school paper and was promoted to managing editor of content this year. She has attended the National Scholastic Press Association’s national convention in Washington D.C. as well as Ball State University’s annual J-Day convention. Last year, Emily received not one, but two first place awards in a contest sponsored by the Women’s Press Club of Indiana. The awards were for coverage of the environment and feature writing. Her journalism teacher at Southport, Mike Klopfenstein, says Emily is one of the best student writers he’s ever advised: “She writes with impressive mastery of language and flow, and she takes pride in her ability to tackle big projects, constructing complex pieces of writing that require synthesis of massive amounts of information.”

Here are their winning essays:

Continue reading Two high school students win SPJ scholarships

Congratulations to all our winners!

indiana-spj-contest-logoCongratulations to all the winners in SPJ’s Best in Indiana contest.

We’re truly proud of all the amazing work our fellow Hoosier journalists have done and thrilled that so many of you could join us at the annual awards dinner to be honored.

We’d love to list all the winners here, but there are just way too many!

So instead, please link to the list and check out your favorite categories.

Congrats again to all the winners and everyone who entered.

Best in Indiana Journalism banquet set for April 23. Buy your tickets now!

Reserve a seat at the annual Best in Indiana Journalism awards banquet, scheduled  for Friday, April 23, 2010 at the Indianapolis Marriott North, 3645 River Crossing Parkway.

Registration and cocktail hour begin at 5:30 p.m., with dinner served at 6:30 p.m.

Questions? Contact contest coordinator Rob Higley at or 578-1440.

For the banquet, individual seats cost $50; tables for eight are $500. (An additional surcharge of $2 per seat is also added by PayPal.)

Go here to purchase tickets.

We are informing award winners as the judged entries are returned from other Society of Professional Journalists chapters, but we are still awaiting results in some categories.

Ball State offers digital media workshop

Are you falling behind the digital media curve? Do you know how to make your web stories shine? Can you make a web video or use Facebook to enhance your stories?

If the answer to any of those questions is no, then you should check out Ball State’s “Journalism in Transition” day long training workshop on May 13.

The HSPA Foundation is sponsoring the program in cooperation with Ball State’s journalism and telecommunications departments. If you’re an HSPA member and register by April 2, you pay just $30, which includes lunch. Pay a little more if you sign up later and just $75 if you’re not a member of HSPA.

There are two tracks — one for editorial and one for advertising — and the workshops will be taught by BSU professors.

Want more information? Click here to get a flier with a sign up form.

IUPUI creates new campus chapter; seeks pros like you for critiques

Journalism students at IUPUI have formed a new campus chapter of SPJ.

To celebrate, the student chapter will host a “Slice & Dice” at the new Student Media Center from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. April 15. The “slice” is free pizza; the “dice” is a critique of student portfolios.

That’s where professional journalists like you come in. The chapter is in search of professional journalists willing to meet with students and critique their portfolios — plus answer questions about the industry.

If you would be willing to volunteer your time, contact IUPUI student Tara Puckey at or (765) 381-0927.