A Magazine by the Society of Professional Journalists

Leaders in the making: Annual chapter development program provides tools to future SPJ leaders

By Quill

In June, 43 SPJ chapter leaders participated in the Ted Scripps Leadership Institute in Indianapolis.

The weekend offered personal leadership development and programming designed specifically to address chapter management issues.

During the three-day event, facilitators provided one-on-one guidance and support to the participants and conducted small group discussions on chapter development issues such as operations, recruitment, fund raising and programming. Participants also spent a half day assessing their personal leadership style and learning to work effectively with other leaders. The balance of the Institute was spent on developing a yearlong master plan and implementation strategy for each chapter.

This year marked the Society’s ninth Leadership Institute. The program began in 1996, and is named for E.W. Scripps II (Ted), grandson and founder of The E.W. Scripps Company. Funding is provided through the Scripps Howard Foundation by Ted Scripps’ sons, Edward W. Scripps Jr. and William H. Scripps, as a way to honor their father’s memory.

“We want to make sure that the Society of Professional Journalists continues its important work for decades to come,” said Sue Porter, vice president of programs for the Scripps Howard Foundation. “By helping to keep SPJ leadership strong, we’re investing in the future.”

Ted Scripps was vice president of Scripps Howard Newspapers in 1960 when he was elected national president of the Society of Professional Journalists, after serving on the national board for six years. At 31, he was one of the youngest presidents in the history of what was then called Sigma Delta Chi.

“Ted led a reorganization of SPJ that was aimed at rejuvenating undergraduate and professional chapters across the nation,” Porter said. “And now, 45 years later, his legacy continues through this leadership training program.”