35th Annual AJHA Convention
St. Petersburg  |   Oct. 6-8, 2016

Convention contacts

Convention Coordinator
Caryl Cooper

Registration Coordinator
Ken Ward

Program Coordinator
Dianne Bragg

Convention hosts

Fred Blevens
Berrin Beasley
Bernell Tripp
Kimberly Voss

Convention sponsors

Reception sponsors

General convention sponsors

Special Events

Poynter Institute is the site of the closing gala dinner.

AJHA Awards Reception | Donna Allen Roundtable Luncheon | Gala Dinner

Sidney Kobre & Teaching Awards Luncheon ♦ Thurs., Oct. 6
Included with registration
Attendees enjoy a plated, table service lunch as AJHA honors the winners of the Sidney Kobre Award for Lifetime Achievement in Journalism History and the National Award for Excellence in Teaching. AJHA's highest honor, the Kobre Award recognizes individuals with an exemplary record of sustained achievement in journalism history through teaching, research, professional activities, or other contributions to the field of journalism history. The annual AJHA Award for Excellence in Teaching honors a college or university teacher who excels at teaching in the areas of journalism and mass communication history, makes a positive impact on student learning, and offers an outstanding example for other educators. For information on this year's award winners, see the Awards page.

AJHA Awards Reception ♦ Thurs., Oct. 6
Included with registration (sponsored by Florida International University and the University of Georgia)

Local Journalist Award

AJHA annually bestows its Outstanding Local Journalist Award for Substantial Contribution to the Public Interest to a journalist local to the convention city whose work has had a positive impact on the community. The recipient serves as a featured speaker at the Thursday evening reception. Reception attendees enjoy hot and cold hors d'oeuvres and a cash bar at this event.

This year, AJHA will present the award to two local journalists: Lucy Morgan and Denise White.

Lucy Morgan started her newspaper career in 1965 at the Ocala Star Banner, moving up to the St. Petersburg Times in 1968, where she covered crime, government and politics. Morgan was chief of the Times capitol bureau in Tallahassee for 20 years. In 1973, Morgan grabbed worldwide attention when she was jailed for eight months after refusing twice to divulge the identity of a news source. In 1976, the Florida Supreme Court overturned the sentence and granted reporters a limited right to protect confidential sources. This landmark case continues to provide protection for reporters who refuse to divulge the names of sources.

Morgan shared the 1985 Pulitzer Prize for Investigative Reporting with Jack Reed for a series that led to the ouster of the Pasco County Sheriff. She was runner up for 1982 Pulitzer in local reporting for a series of stories on drug smuggling and public corruption in Dixie and Taylor counties.

More than 25 years ago, Denise White became the first African-American to anchor a 5 p.m. newscast in Tampa Bay, where she was also a fixture on WTVT’s Fox 13 News at Noon. White’s 5 p.m. newscast consistently ranked atop the market. White has done special reporting on key social issues, including a series on homelessness and the plight of grandmothers left to raise their grandchildren. For more than two decades, her signature Black History Month stories profiled local history makers in Tampa Bay.

After starting her career in Virginia, White moved to Orlando's WFTV, then Miami's WSVN Channel 7, as a reporter and anchor. At WSVN, White received an Emmy nomination for spot news coverage of an emergency plane landing in Miami.  She also played an informant on Miami Vice in exchange for a behind-the-scenes story on the hit show. In retirement, White anchors a program covering life at the University of South Florida on WUSF.

Distinguished Administrator Award

At the reception, AJHA also will present its second ever Distinguished Administrator Award to Charles N. Davis, dean of the Grady College of Journalism & Mass Communication at the University of Georgia since 2013. Prior to his appointment at UGA, Davis spent 14 years on the faculty at the University of Missouri School of Journalism, where he served as a department chair and as executive director of the National Freedom of Information Coalition. He also has taught at Georgia Southern University and Southern Methodist University in Dallas.

During his professional journalism career, Davis worked for newspapers, magazines and a news service in Georgia and Florida. Learn more.

Donna Allen Roundtable Luncheon ♦ Fri., Oct. 7
Additional charge
The annual Donna Allen Luncheon celebrates contributions of women to the field of journalism. American Journalism Historians Association invites a woman journalist local to the convention city as its honored guest and featured speaker for the luncheon. Attendees enjoy a plated, table service lunch at this event.

The 2016 speaker is Janet K. Keeler, a visiting assistant professor in the Department of Journalism and Media Studies at the University of South Florida-St. Petersburg, coordinator of the department’s Graduate Food Writing and Photography Certificate, and creator of the university’s Food for Thought lecture series. Author of “Cookielicious: 150 Fabulous Recipes to Bake and Share,” Keeler spent 22 years of her 35-year newspaper career as food and travel editor at the Tampa Bay Times. Her professional newspaper work has been honored by the Association of Food Journalists, Florida Society of Newspaper Editors, and the Society of Professional Journalists. Learn more.

Gala Dinner ♦ Sat., Oct. 8 ♦ Poynter Institute
Additional charge

The closing event for the annual AJHA convention enables convention attendees to network and reminisce over the convention's activities in a social setting. The Gala will be hosted by The Poynter Institute and will be held in its facility at 801 Third St. South, which is within walking distance of the hotel. Poynter is known as a leader and innovator in the continued education of journalism practitioners and teachers. The Institute uses media professionals and scholars to create the "Poynter Experience," a curriculum that is both unique and transformative. Visit the Poynter website.

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