April 26, 2013

• Hall of Fame Inducts Five New Members

• Have you been to accesskpa.com lately?

• WKU Alum lands international job while 2012 KPA Intern Wins David Dick Storytelling Award

• Open Meetings vs. Ethics Board

•KSP Media Day — All About Building Better Relationships


John Nelson, executive editor of the Advocate Messenger in Danville and The Winchester Sun, and 2004 KPA President, was among five inductees into the Kentucky Journalism Hall of Fame. Ceremonies were held Tuesday at The Thoroughbred Center in Lexington.

Also inducted were:904304_10151464673349585_441199379_o

Ralph Gabbard, WKYT/WYMT-TV (posthumous)

Bill Goodman, Kentucky Educational Television

Dan Modlin, WKU Public Radio

Marla Ridenour, Akron (Ohio) Beacon Journal

The Kentucky Journalism Hall of Fame was established in 1980 by the University of Kentucky Journalism Alumni Association.

The first recipients were inducted in 1981.

New members are inducted each year. The purpose

John Nelson, above, as a student at Eastern Kentucky University in 1973; and shown with wife, Mary Jane, and daughter, Julie, after being inducted into the Hall of Fame

John Nelson, above, as a student at Eastern Kentucky University in 1973; and shown with wife, Mary Jane, and daughter, Julie, after being inducted into the Hall of Fame

John Nelson, above, as a student at Eastern Kentucky University in 1973; and shown with wife, Mary Jane, and daughter, Julie, after being inducted into the Hall of Fame
John Nelson, above, as a student at Eastern Kentucky University in 1973; and shown with wife, Mary Jane, and daughter, Julie, after being inducted into the Hall of Fame
is to recognize Kentuckians who have made significant contributions to the profession of journalism. Selection is made from individuals, living or dead, who are natives of Kentucky, or who have spent a significant portion of their careers in Kentucky. The material that appears here is the copy from the Hall of Fame members’ induction plaques. In some cases, Hall of Fame members or their families have provided updated biographical information and/or links to related web sites. The Kentucky Journalism Hall of Fame is administered by and housed at the University of Kentucky’s School of Journalism and Telecommunications.


I’ll be attending a UK College of Communications and Information Studies National Advisory Board meeting on Friday (April 26) so while this is dated the 26th, it’s coming to you late on Thursday. I probably will not be in the office Friday until 3 p.m. or so.


If it’s approaching summer that means the KPA Fall Chapter series is not far behind. It starts the week of September 8 and continues for 10 weeks. This marks the 12th year that KPA has made these chapter series available to all members at no cost and most of the 12 have featured Kentucky’s most famous dachshunds — Woody and Chloe.

Here’s a brief synopsis of the (working title) “Outstanding in His Field” chapter series.

Outstanding in His Field by Leigh Anne Florence and illustrated by Chris Ware.

During a conversation with Woody and Chloe, Mom and Dad realize the pups take food for granted. Woody believes milk, eggs, chicken, and all his favorite treats originate from the grocery store or restaurant. Mom and Dad arrange for the family to visit farms all across Kentucky so the pups can see first hand all the hard work farmers put forth in getting food from the ground to the grocery store. Join Woody and Chloe as they work on a cattle farm, dairy farm, fruit farm, just to name a few. Read along as the pups plant corn, eat their first tomato right off the vine, gather eggs from the hen house, and even try to get chocolate milk from a brown cow.

Theme: Kentucky agriculture

Project is FREE to all KPA member newspapers.

Non-members price: $350. without scrapbooks. $500 with scrapbooks.

Sign up at kypress.com starting May 1.

Free teacher workshop with Woody and Chloe will be scheduled soon.

Project sponsored by LG&E/KU, KPA and HLNIE

For more information contact, kjohnson@herald-leader.com




We’re meaning accesskpa.com, the website where we post news releases for the newsroom and ads for the advertising departments. The ad departments know to check the site, and when to check it. But for the other side, just remember to check accesskpa.com a couple of times a week.

Already this month we’ve posted stories about the digitization to preserve written materials (a collaborative effort between UK Archives, KPA and GeoTel/NewzGroup), EKU offering an online doctorate program, a train robbery at the Kentucky Railway Museum in New Haven, a couple from Rumsey, Ky. (ask Teresa, she’ll tell you Rumsey is in McLean County), fund-raising for Charities Across the Commonwealth and, almost too late now, but the Homebuilders are celebrating April as Kentucky Homeownership Month.

Make yourself a note to check accesskpa.com every Monday morning, or Friday afternoon, or whenever. If there’s not a story there you can use, maybe there’s one that will entice you to do a similar story locally.


Last week, I mentioned some Open Meetings issues that had developed into AG opinions and the ‘Your Duty Under the Law’ publication from the AG’s Office. In a sense, that portion was self-serving. Last Thursday night, I was elected chair of the Georgetown City Ethics Board (or Commission or whatever it is we call ourselves). At the meeting’s conclusion I gave the other four members a copy of the AG publication “Your Duty…” as well a copy of 61.800 dealing with Open Meetings. If nothing else, meetings of this ethics board will be run according to law. None of the other four had been given their copies as required by law but that’s okay. None of them had served for 90 days and the law allows the mayor 90 days to give each public agency member a copy of the law.

But there was another reason I wanted them to have a copy, especially of the Open Meetings law. During our meeting, the board was given a detailed outline of the ethics board’s responsibilities, what areas of ethics violations or concerns it could cover and a copy of the ordinance governing the ethics board.

That’s where the problem came in. The ordinance states, and it’s apparently the same language written in every other ethics ordinance in the state, that personnel discussions or hearings “shall be conducted in closed session.” I objected to that language because the Open Meetings law states that a hearing or discussion being in private or public is up to the subject (person) of that discussion. If the person wants the hearing open, it shall be open. Regardless.

I confirmed last Friday with Jon Fleischaker and Amye Bensenhaver at the Attorney General’s Office that state law takes precedence over any local ordinance. So the state law allowing the individual to decide public or private is applicable, regardless of what the ordinance states.

I understand an ethics board is quasi-judicial. It cannot take final action against an individual. It can only recommend if any action should be taken. But that still fits within the language in the law because it states, and notice particularly the “might lead” portion:

(f) Discussions or hearings which might lead to the appointment, discipline, or dismissal of an individual employee, member, or student without restricting that employee’s, member’s, or student’s right to a public hearing if requested. This exception shall not be interpreted to permit discussion of general personnel matters in secret.

I mention this because you should watch local ethics commissions and see if they try to close any discussion or hearing about a particular case and the individual/subject is not given the right to decide if the hearing/discussion is held in public or private. And if the “shall be closed” language is in your city or county ethics ordinance, just know that state law is superior to what local policies might state. A local ordinance cannot be more restrictive than state law, just as state law cannot be more restrictive that federal law.


When 23-year-old Kayla Spelling heads home at the end of a workday, she weaves through tourists buying leather goods, scarves and magnets. She listens for the warning of bike bells and picks up bits of conversations in the language she doesn’t yet understand. The espresso she grabbed that morning from her neighborhood café had long worn off. She woke up this morning in a foreign city, nearly 5,000 miles away from home pursuing an international career many only dream about.

Spelling, a Western Kentucky University (WKU) graduate and Imagewest alumna, is working with one of the agency’s former clients in Florence, Italy. Spelling landed a yearlong contract with Lorenzo de’ Medici (LdM) after working for them in the summer of 2012 with Imagewest, a student-run advertising and public relations agency on WKU’s campus. LdM is an Italian international institution that caters to American students and other English-speaking students. While in Florence last summer, Imagewest created a promotional video and digital marketing plan for the university.

“I took a chance and asked if they needed someone to stay on full-time as a videographer, and I’m so glad they did,” Spelling said. She’s always dreamed about working overseas before the trip and is now the videographer and editor for LdM.

Spelling is the only videographer for LdM. She collects footage at a variety of university events to create videos used in corporate settings as well as promotional clips, such as cooking tutorials with professors.

The Covington, Ky., native began her college career in WKU’s School of Journalism & Broadcasting in the broadcasting department, but wanted a career that was less news-based.

That is when she found advertising, where she could be creative while still working with video. Her passion for narrative filmmaking and web design was the perfect fit for her new major. She graduated in May 2012, majoring in advertising with a concentration in interactive design and a minor in history.


Ashley Scoby interned last summer at the LaRue County Herald News in Hodgenville. She was one of 20 interns made available to a KPA member newspaper through the internship program.

While at LaRue County, Ashley did a story on autism and entered that story in the David Dick Storytelling competition for UK students. This week, Ashley was selected as the student winner of the award.

The story is “Wayne Ridge Provides Rider Programs for Autistic Children,” and was published in the LaRue County Herald on July 10, 2012.

The student award competition is open to UK journalism majors for work published or completed through student media, at an internship, or at any recognized media outlet (radio, TV, newspaper, magazine or independently edited website) during 2012.

The professional journalist winner is Meaghan Downs from The Anderson News. She won for “A Promise to God,” published on December 26, 2012. The professional award is for work done for any bona fide Kentucky media outlet (radio, TV, newspaper, magazine or independently edited website).

The judges evaluated entries looking for the best in storytelling—that which enlightens and informs while captivating the audience so they get the full story. Great storytelling can break a heart or inspire it. It can be sublime or ridiculous, but it is always memorable.

The entry criteria states: Entries are not limited to hard news, and may include features, advocacy journalism, personality profiles, columns and even obituaries. The essentials are good writing informed by good reporting on whatever platform.

No matter what the form, the story should be well-developed, free from errors, possess sound journalistic mechanics and exhibit high ethical standards.

The entry period for articles published in 2013 will be announced in January, 2014.


The Kentucky State Police held the first of what might become an annual event — KSP Media Day — Thursday at headquarters here in Frankfort.

Several from Kentucky newspapers attended and after introductions and discussions about the KSP website and what’s available and a primer on Open Records from the KSP standpoint, each attendee had a chance to ask questions on KSP policies, address particular issues or discuss situations they’ve faced trying to get information.

Honestly, for the most part, I think the current KSP administration and Public Affairs Officers from several posts who were there are wanting to foster a positive relationship with the news media. Part of this positive attitude might stem from Commissioner Rodney Brewer who had worked as a PAO early in his 30-year career.

Newspapers have had issues with KSP over the years but it’s been a while since any newspaper has contacted KPA complaining they cannot get information or that a PAO refuses to work with them. In fact, some of the media present were very complimentary of current PAOs at posts they work with.

It got bad enough a few years ago that we had to call in Jon Fleischaker and invited several editors to KSP headquarters to have a good heart-to-heart talk with those officials. It improved almost immediately and the better relationships lasted for a while.

It’s so much easier to build a positive relationship when those at the top want a good relationship between their agency and the news media.


Just some notes:

• KSP wants to close the gap between what it’s giving the media and what the media needs. The best way to accomplish this is communication and that’s much of what Thursday was about.

• Commissioner Rodney Brewer has a blog and you’re encouraged to check that periodically

• KSP’s Facebook page has some 60,000 followers. KSP is also active on Twitter and has some RSS feeds that would be of interest to you.

• KSP has a YouTube presence — http://www.youtube.com/user/kentuckystatepolice — and you are encouraged to use that and even link it to your website for a video presence.

• Any active media advisories can be found on www.kentuckystatepolice.org — the KSP webpage. Look on the left hand side of the main page, right below the index to various links and you’ll find any active media advisories. There are several links on the website for all kinds of reports.


Jeff Jobe asked for information on the new public notices that will be required under House Bill 1 on Special Districts. Since legislation passed this session isn’t “law” until the end of June, I’m going to wait a few weeks and then get a list out of what will be required once this law takes effect. I think there are four new public notices but it’s a quite lengthy law and will take some time to read through all of it to find out what is there.


I don’t have all of the information right now but wanted to let you know that a conference originally scheduled for January 22 is now being planned for May 22 at the Cardome Center in Georgetown.

Here’s the basic information and more will follow next week:

A conference geared at the changes in the news media from John Bradford and the Kentucke Gazette to today’s social media is now scheduled for May 22.

“Words in a Changing World: From Bradford to Bloggers” Conference to be held at Cardome Center in Georgetown. The conference was originally set for November 29 then changed to January 22 and now is planned for May 22. The Cardome Center is located just north of Georgetown, on U.S. 25.

A panel discussion in the morning session will address the role of local historic figure John Bradford in bringing civic literacy to Kentucky and explaining why he is pertinent today and his continuing influence.

John Carroll, a former editor of the Herald Leader and the Los Angeles Times and 13-time Pulitzer prize recipient, will be the featured luncheon speaker, to be followed by an afternoon panel discussion session focusing upon the contemporary effect of social media upon print journalism.


I mentioned in the accesskpa.com segment above about a news release on the digitization efforts to preserve written materials.

I won’t reprint the entire news release — you can find that on accesskpa.com — but here are a few graphs since it involves KPA.

Collaboration with The Digital Public Library of America, University of Kentucky, Kentucky Press Association and Newz Group facilitates expansion of digital archives

As the world moves online, companies and public institutions are looking for a way to upload the multitude of printed material online for easier access, organization and preservation.

The Digital Public Library of America is working to create a digital library of content for museums, libraries, universities and many other institutions across the country. The purpose of this project is to give everyone free access to information previously only available in print.

The DPLA chose five digital libraries for their pilot project, including The University of Kentucky. The Kentucky Digital Library has been working since 1997 to digitize university content. Newz Group started working with the Kentucky Press Association and the Kentucky Public Library in 2008 to convert, store and host newspapers in the state.

This group effort among the Kentucky Press Association, the University of Kentucky and Newz Group is helping to preserve Kentucky history through newspapers, oral histories, photographs and more.


Tuesday, Jon Fleischaker will be conducting a seminar for the Kentucky Bar Association members, on “Perspectives On Access: The Kentucky Open Records and Open Meetings Acts.” That’s at noon at the Kentucky Bar Association headquarters here in Frankfort. Amye Bensenhaver is the program chair for KBA and invited me to attend as her guest to hear Jon’s session. I’ll be out from 11:30 a.m. until about 2 p.m.

Wednesday, I have a lunch meeting in Lexington on the John Bradford Conference that is now scheduled for May 22 at the Cardome Center in Georgetown. Will be out of the office from about 11:20 until at 2 p.m.

Friday, May 3, I’m taking a sick day for a couple of doctor visits. Nothing major and no concern at all. Just decided to pack these into one day and get them over with.

Okay, that’ll do it for another week or again til next Thursday since I’ll be visiting doctors on Friday. As always, call or email or stop by if you have questions, comments, concerns, issues, clarifications, corrections, additions or deletions.

And even though I’m out most all of April 26, email if you need anything and I’ll get back with you as soon as I can.

Otherwise, thanx!!


April 26, 2013

9 a.m. – 2:30 p.m. — UK National Advisory Board Meeting for College of Communication and Information Studies (will be out of the office until about 3 p.m)

April 30, 2013

Jon Fleischaker addresses the Kentucky Bar Association symposium – “Perspectives On Access: The Kentucky Open Records and Open Meetings Acts.”

May 1, 2013

12 Noon – Lunch meeting on John Bradford/Kentucke Gazette Conference

May 8/May 9, 201

Kentucky Chamber of Commerce Health Care Reform Seminars (May 8/Lexington; May 9/Louisville) No charge to reporters; others pay $179 to $229 to attend

May 16, 2013

12 noon to 5 p.m. – KPA/KPS Staff Retreat with Executive Committee, Dr. Darryl Armstrong, Frankfort

May 22, 2013

‘From Bradford/Kentucke Gazette to Bloggers’ – Conference scheduled at Cardome Center, Georgetown (See note below)

July 12, 2013

12 Noon – KPA/KPS Board of Directors Meeting, Kentucky History Center, Frankfort

August 6 – 9, 2013

Newspaper Association Managers Annual Convention, Marriott Harbourfront Hotel, Halifax, Nova Scotia

September 8, 2013

Fall Chapter Series with Woody and Chloe Begins 10-week Run

September 9, 2013

2013 Inaugural Border War Golf Tournament, Kentucky Press vs. Tennessee Press members, Fairvue Plantation Country Club, Gallatin, TN

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