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The National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ), is an organization of journalists, students, and media professionals that provides quality programs and services to and advocates on behalf of black journalists. NABJ was founded in 1975 by 44 men and women in Washington, D.C.marker Headquartered at the University of Maryland, College Parkmarker and with nearly 4000 members, it is the largest organization of journalists of color in the nation. Over 90 professional and student chapters are located throughout the United States with members representing every media profession.

The organization annual honors coverage of African American people and subjects through its Salute to Excellence Awards. African American journalists are honored with awards including Journalist of the Year, Emerging Journalist and Lifetime Achievement. Honorees have included Ed Bradley, Carole Simpson, Byron Pitts, Charlayne Hunter-Gault, Bernard Shaw, and Michele Norris. NABJ also maintains a Hall of Fame, which is designed to honor African American journalists.

The national office headquarters is based on the campus of the University of Maryland in College Park, Md.

The president is Kathy Y. Times, anchor of WDBD-TVmarker in Jackson, Mississippi. The executive director and chief operating officer is Karen Wynn Freeman, who joined the organization in 2006.

It is also the largest of the four associations that comprise UNITY: Journalists of Color, Inc.


NABJ is committed to the following:

  • Strengthening ties among black journalists;
  • Sensitizing all media to the importance of fairness in the workplace for black journalists;
  • Expanding job opportunities and recruiting activities for veteran, young and aspiring black journalists, while providing continued professional development and training;
  • Increasing the number of black journalists in management positions and encouraging black journalists to become entrepreneurs;
  • Fostering an exemplary group of professionals that honors excellence and outstanding achievements by black journalists, and outstanding achievement in the media industry as a whole, particularly when it comes to providing balanced coverage of the black community and society at large;
  • Working with high schools and colleges to identify and encourage black students to become journalists, and to diversify faculties and related curriculum; and
  • Providing informational and training services to the general public.

Annual Convention and Career Fair

NABJ annually holds the nation's largest journalism convention and career fair each summer with plenary sessions and workshops for career and professional development.

Recent plenary speakers have included former U.S. President Bill Clinton, Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Hillary Rodham Clinton then presidential candidate Barack Obama, and Senegalese President Abdoulaye Wade. The convention features hundreds of recruiters and is among the best means of finding a journalism position in the industry.

The NABJ Career Fair encompasses the nations broadcast, print, and online media including recruiters from Gannett Corporation, NBC News, CNN, Bloomberg, Google, ESPN The New York Times, and Tribune Company.

NABJ held its first convention in Oct. 1976 at Texas Southern University. At the time, Texas Southern had become the first black school of communications in the West and the second in the nation, behind Howard University.

Future locations of the NABJ Convention and Career Fair include San Diego, Cal.; Philadelphia Penn.; New Orleans, Louis. and Minneapolis, Minn.


The organization also distributes more than $100,000 in scholarships to African-American college journalism students, places 14-16 students at paid internships and sponsors short courses for students at historically black colleges and universities.

Task Forces

  • Arts & Entertainment Task Forces - members who cover arts and entertainment
  • Associate Member's - part-time journalists, educators, marketing and public relations professionals
  • Copy Editors - copy desk managers, news editors, design editors
  • Digital Journalism - members on the cutting edge transforming the media landscape
  • NABJ Founders - NABJ Founders, past presidents, and former national board members
  • LGBT Taskforce - lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered members
  • Sports Task Force - sports reporters, correspondents and analysts
  • Visual Task Force - photojournalists, design/informational graphics
  • Young Journalists - journalists in their first few years
  • World Affairs - promotes world wide coverge of African/African-Americans


On Dec. 12, 1975, 44 men and women gathered at the Sheraton Park Hotel in Washington, D.C. (now the Marriott Wardman Park Hotel) to form NABJ. Here are their names and where they worked at the time:

  • Bob Greenlee, New Haven Register

  • John C. White, Washington Star


Men and Women who've served as presidents of NABJ.

  • Vanessa Williams, 1997-1999

  • William W. Sutton, Jr., 1999-2001

  • Condace Pressley, 2001-2003

  • Herbert Lowe, 2003-2005

  • Bryan Monroe, 2005-2007

  • Kathy Y. Times, 2009-Present

See also

External links

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