The Charlotte Area Association of Black Journalists (CAABJ) is an affiliate chapter of the National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ), a nonprofit organization focused on establishing strong ties among African-Americans working in the media and expanding and balancing the media's coverage of the African-American community and experience.

May 26, 2007

What's Next for CAABJ? -- Stay Tuned!

Thanks to all of you who came out to the monthly meeting on May 22, 2007. For those of you who could not make it out, we've posted the meeting minutes below. Also we had a great time Thursday at the Mixer at Tutto Mondo. It was great to see all of you. And if you look at the announcements on the left side of the screen you'll notice that we have an Education & Race forum coming up on October 20, 2007 at the Levine Museum of the South from 1-3pm. Dr. Peter Gorman will be the main speaker. So please start spreading the word. If you are interested in volunteering during the event send us an e-mail at

May Meeting Highlights: May 22, 2007

I. Welcome/ Opening

- We began the meeting at 7:15pm with 8 people in attendance. 6 members and 2 new people, Barbara Pinson a reporter/anchor for WBTV and Richard Washington a producer from WBTV. Vice President of Print, Lena Warmack stood in for President, Melody Freeman who was out of town getting married. Lena Warmack also read the Treasurer’s report. Treasurer, Lindsay Pollack could not attend because she was sick.

II. Treasurer’s Report

- We currently have $1,325.94 in our account.
- That total comes after an $81 dollar reimbursement to Lena Warmack for food for the April workshop and $55 payment for the use of the library for the “Accessing the Media” workshop.

IV. Overview of the Board’s Goals for 2007

- Bervette Carree: Plans to institute an e-mail mentoring program for students at UNC-Charlotte.
- Alva Pearson: Plans to make the web work better for members and people interested in the organization. Wants to put job openings, discussion questions and possibly work with locally black owned businesses to advertise on the site.
- Lena Warmack: Wants to get the organization involved with volunteer
opportunities. She has talked to several organizations which are outlined in detail below.

III. Volunteer Opportunities

- CMS : Needs volunteers during lunch time or after school to help out
with reading and writing assignments.

- Able Center : Needs tutors to help out on nights and weekends with
people trying to get their GED.

- Rivens Scholarship Foundation : Needs volunteers to help tutor
grade school children on weekend.

IV. Recap of “Accessing the Media” Workshop

- Ken Lemon gave a quick summation of how the event turned out.
He said he was glad that this year participants got to take home helpful information. The event gave the public the chance to learn the ins and outs of the news business. He thanked everyone who donated food to the event.

V. Upcoming Events

- Education and Race Forum will be held on October 20, 2007 at the
Levine Museum of the South from 1pm to 3pm
. The main speaker
will be Dr. Peter Gorman, Superintendent of CMS. The president of Gaston College and a student from UNC-Charlotte will also speak. CAABJ Member, Mary Curtis will be the moderator. Members still need to vote on the $100 budget. The Planning Committee will meet on Tuesday, May 29 at 7:30pm at Brixx Pizza on East Boulevard to further discuss details and preparation for the event.

CAABJ wants to hear from you. Every week we will post a new discussion question that pertains to what's going on in the media and the world at large. It's your chance to let your voice be heard. Just click on "comment".

May 28, 2007: Does a victim's race play a role in media coverage?

University of Tennessee student Channon Christian, 21, and her 23-year-old boyfriend, Christopher Newsom, were last seen by friends Jan. 6 in Knoxville as they left for a dinner date. Newsom's burned body was found the next day near a railroad track. Christian was found the day after that, stuffed in a trash can. Both had been raped repeatedly. Five people have been arrested for the crimes and await trial. More than a dozen e-mails have been sent to several Plain Dealer editors describing torture and mutilation in horrific detail and asking why this and other newspapers have not printed anything about this awful crime. Most of the e-mails carried accusations of "reverse racism" - the victims were both white, the alleged attackers were all black - saying that if the races had been reversed, this would have been a huge national story. The Associated Press moved at least a dozen stories about it - including five that were sent on the national wire and thus were available to any AP member paper. But it didn't appear in The Plain Dealer until yesterday, when we ran an AP story that summed up the complaints about the lack of national play. The reason for that is straightforward: Regrettably, rapes and murders are committed around the country every day. While this one was horrible for the victims and their families, the early reports about the attack were not different enough to make editors think that it was a story our readers needed to read.

May 13, 2007

May Meeting is Days Away!

CAABJ is staying on the move, but we need your help to keep the momentum going. So, come on out to Dilworth Neighborhood Grille on 911East Morehead Street on Tuesday, May 22nd at 7PM and bring your ideas to this month’s meeting. Also, if you have information on any media job openings please bring them to the meeting so that we can post them on the website. Our goal is to provide members with more services and events that you find helpful. The only way we can do that is if we hear from you. And after all the stress of sweeps and books you’ll definitely need some r and r. We invite you to join us May 24th at Tutto Mondo on 1820 South Boulevard for a few drinks, fun and fellowship. It’s totally a relaxed affair, just a way for us to unwind after a very hectic month. We look forward to seeing you there.