Here are five things you don't want to miss:
1. What does it mean to be an opinion editor today?
How has the role of opinion writing changed? How can opinion writing engage the public around important community problems in a thoughtful and productive way in an era of rapid-fire social media outbursts, fractured media and hyper-partisanship? On Tuesday, Oct. 10, we will explore these questions with three distinguished journalists, Alex Kingsbury of The Boston Globe, Colleen McCain Nelson of The Kansas City Star and Betty Knighton, director of the West Virginia Center for Civic Life, a group that specializes in civic engagement. Jennifer Hemmingsen, an editorial writer at the Cayman Compass, will moderate.
2. Free lunch tickets for four winners
Both lunches will feature an outstanding keynote speaker. On Oct. 9, Leonard Pitts Jr., Miami Herald Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist, will talk about current events in Washington. On the following day, we will hear from Àine Kerr, manager of global journalism partnerships at Facebook, who oversees a team focused on building products, tools and services for journalists and also working to improve news literacy for news consumers.
3. Who doesn't like to party? We'll have two receptions!
From 6 to 9 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 8, we'll have hors d'oeuvres and a cash bar (CASH ONLY) in the Amazonia Habitat and Amazonia Science Gallery at the Smithsonian's National Zoo. If you'd like, say hello to some animals found along the Amazon river.
From 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 10, Joe Hockey, Australian ambassador to the United States, will be hosting 80 of us at his residence, at 3120 Cleveland Ave. NW, about a 15-minute walk from the Marriott. We will have cocktails, snacks and some quality time for a Q&A and other fun, engaging conversations. This stand-up reception is open on a first-come, first-served basis to those who are registered and made a hotel reservation for the conference.
4. Pre-conference workshops on community engagement and Knight Foundation's update on the "Table Stakes" project
From 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 8, the first workshop will address the role of community engagement for news organizations and how to build trust with their audiences and communities. Best practices and examples of community engagement will be incorporated. Attendees will emerge from the workshop better equipped to engage readers and strengthen trust in quality journalism.
From 2 to 5 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 8, the second workshop will provide an update on Knight Foundation's "Table Stakes" project and present newsrooms of innovation and culture that are best for the 21st century.
Offered on a first-come, first-served basis, both workshops are free to those who are registered to attend the conference. Those who would like to attend just the workshops can sign up for only $75.
5. Recruitment and retention
Need more diversity in your newsroom? Get quick tips from industry leaders. This panel takes a fresh look at recruiting and retaining journalists of color in the digital age. On Tuesday, Oct. 10, our experts will provide insight on today's journalism graduates and talented folks with potential working in the digital space. How do we retain journalists of color who are worried about the future and are tempted to seek employment in public relations, academia and other "more stable" professions?
- Katrice Hardy, editor of The Greenville News and USA TODAY southeast regional editor
- Carlos Sanchez, editor of the McAllen (Texas) Monitor
- Peter Bhatia, editor and vice president of The Cincinnati Enquirer and Ohio editor of the USA TODAY Network
- Karen Magnuson (moderator), editor and vice president of news at the Rochester (New York) Democrat and Chronicle
To register for the main conference: The registration fee is $275 for members of ASNE and APME and $375 for nonmembers. Those who register and book a three-night hotel stay by Aug. 12 will have a chance to win free lunch tickets!Special rates are also available for retired members, spouses, students and APME's Regents. Lunch tickets for Monday, Oct. 9, and Tuesday, Oct. 10, can be purchased during registration.