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.

December 23, 2008

CAABJ Board Member Named One of 'Seven To Watch'

This week The Charlotte Observer is profiling its "Seven To Watch" for 2009. The newspaper chose seven area people that it says is "shaping our region" and is revealing one each day this week. We are proud to announce that CAABJ board member Ayofemi Kirby is one of those seven and she is featured in today's paper. The article is below.

She encourages young voters to get involved
Ayofemi Kirby, Co-community director of GenerationEngage

By Clay Barbour
Photo by Yalonda M. James

The recent presidential election proved just how powerful the youth vote can be. Ayofemi Kirby is determined to not let that momentum slip away.

Kirby, 23, is Charlotte's new co-community director of GenerationEngage, a national nonprofit agency that tries to get young people involved with politics in their community.

The nonpartisan organization, which focuses on 16- to 30-year-olds, holds forums and parties that often give young voters their first chance to meet local elected officials.

“What we want is for young people to take advantage of what they have to offer,” she said. “Their energy and willingness to take chances.”

As proof, Kirby points to the election of Barack Obama this past November. More than 70 percent of younger voters cast their ballots for the new president.

“Without their vote, he would not have won,” she said.

December 21, 2008

CAABJ Board Chosen for 2009

Members of the Charlotte Area Association of Black Journalists have elected their 2009 Board of Directors. They are as follows:

Jarvis Holliday, President
Ken Lemon, Vice President of Broadcast
Sondra Hines, Vice President of Print
Ayofemi (Femi) Hunter-Kirby, Secretary
April Turner, Parliamentarian
Nicole Carter, Treasurer

We thank each of these journalists for answering the call to lead CAABJ in 2009. We also thank outgoing board members Trey Harmon, Tiffany Leonard, and Kristina Hill for their outstanding service and dedication during the past year.

December 4, 2008

Call for Journalists Affected By Layoffs

Below is a note from our NABJ regional director Ken Knight. If you're a black journalist in the Charlotte area who has been affected by layoffs in the past year, please email us at so we can help compile the list for NABJ.

As you may have heard, Gannett lost more than 1,000 journalists and newspaper professionals in the latest round of layoffs and buy outs yesterday. The media job losses in the past two to three years have been massive and damaging to the livelihoods of so many of our professional colleagues and NABJ brothers and sisters.

NABJ doesn’t plan to sit still while many of your members find themselves out of work for the first time in their career.

I need your help to compile a list of your chapter members or journalists in your city or area who you believe are NABJ members who have been affected. We are trying to create a master list of NABJ members who have been laid off. I’m requesting names and contact information.

NABJ is committed to do all that’s possible to help our colleagues find work, receive training or access to contacts and information.

Ken Knight
Region III Director
National Association of Black Journalists