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 Member Spotlight:
Felicia Middlebrooks: In The Record Books

The National Association of Black Journalists proudly salutes longtime NABJ member Felicia Middlebrooks who on October 1 celebrated her 30th anniversary as the morning drive anchor for CBS Radio/WBBM Newsradio 780/105.9 FM Chicago. Middlebrooks was the first woman and the first African-American to co-anchor the highly competitive morning drive program in Chicago.

The role of news anchor is one Middlebrooks cherishes as she always aspired to be a respected journalist. Her success undoubtedly opened doors for women to be considered for anchor positions in other markets around the country.

Middlebrooks has a strong work ethic, which was honed when she worked as a steelworker to 

finance her undergraduate degree in mass communications at Purdue University. She later returned to the classroom to earn her MBA also from Purdue. In her career in Chicago Middlebrooks has connected with listeners over the airwaves due to her warmth, charm, and sophistication.

Frequently on the lecture circuit, Felicia has mentored scores of aspiring young journalists. As an adjunct professor, she teaches courses at DePaul University and Purdue University Calumet, where she was named Outstanding Alumnus of 2003.   

In 2006, she was inducted into the International Press Club’s Chicago Journalism Hall of Fame. 

You can read more about Ms. Middlebrooks’ thoughts on her career in this recent Chicago Tribune article.


CNN Withdraws Support of the National Association of Black Journalists


This month at the NABJ Board of Directors  Fall Meeting, President Bob Butler announced that long-time supporter CNN has withdrawn support of NABJ for the 2015 Convention & Career Fair.

NABJ issued a statement last week, "NABJ Concerned About Atmosphere at CNN for African Americans", in which NABJ expressed concern over the large number of African-American staff members leaving and being fired from the cable news network. 

Several African-Americans anchors have left the anchor desk or CNN altogether in the past few years.


Following the release CNN contacted NABJ President Bob Butler and informed him the association's request for support was denied.

Since that time CNN announced a major layoff in which at least five senior managers were laid off. In the past year nearly a dozen African American managers have resigned, been laid off or were terminated."

"I understand the company has a right to make personnel decisions," said NABJ President Bob Butler.

"There were not that many African American managers at CNN in the first place. These layoffs have hurt our members tremendously. I am severely disappointed that CNN has ended our partnership."

NABJ was established as an advocacy group in 1975 in Washington, D.C., and is now the largest organization for journalists of color in the nation. It provides career development, educational support and other services to its members worldwide.

 More here.



Lee Ivory Appointed as New NABJ Secretary


NABJ President Bob Butler appointed Region II Director Lee Ivory as NABJ Secretary.


The secretary position was left vacant earlier this month when Corey Dade resigned from the role after assuming a new job as Senior Director with Burson–Martseller.



Ivory previously was appointed Region II Director for NABJ in September 2013 when the role was vacant. He currently teaches journalism and multimedia at American University in Washington and is a freelance editor. In 2011, he taught journalism and multimedia courses at Virginia Commonwealth University as the Virginius Dabney Distinguished Professor. 

NABJ is fortunate to have Lee step into the role of Secretary,” Butler said. “He has a long distinguished record of leadership within NABJ, including as a past President of the Washington Association of Black Journalists.  He will do well in this role and ensure

that our members have up-to-date minutes and are kept aware of the happenings in NABJ.”


Previously, Ivory worked at Gannett Company, Inc. for 26 years in a variety of capacities, including as a news editor, managing editor and national editor for Gannett News Service. He also was publisher and executive editor of USA Today Sports Weekly. 


An advocacy group established in 1975 in Washington, D.C., NABJ is the largest organization for journalists of color in the nation and provides career development as well as educational and other support to its members worldwide. 

More here.






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