Tag Archives: SABEW


SABEW developing biz journalism history site


The Society of American Business Editors and Writers is developing an online history of business journalism in connection with its 50th anniversary.

The group was founded in 1963 and will formally celebrate turning 50 at its annual meeting in Washington from April 4-7.

The project, known as the American History of Business Journalism, will include several components:

    • In-depth looks at significant issues and trends shaping the profession during the past 50 years.
    • Biographies of leading business journalists who have passed away.
    • First-person pieces from current leaders in the profession about various aspects of their career and craft.
    • An extensive inventory of award-winning business journalism over the years.
    • A history of SABEW itself plus an archive of the group’s activities and membership since 1963.
    • An interactive timeline of business journalism events, people, and significant stories.

“The history is a long-overdue effort to centralize and more formally recognize the work and contributions of business journalists as well as SABEW,” says AHBJ editor Phil Moeller, who headed SABEW in 1988 and now writes for U.S. News & World Report. “We started with a modest goal of slapping together a few nice stories. But nearly everyone contacted for the project stepped forward and volunteered to write or research or scan old SABEW files. It just mushroomed, and now we just hope we can build a scalable web site to contain everything.”

“Throughout the many ups, downs and uncertainties of its 50 years, the society has done much to give business journalism an institutional memory by remaining true to the mission of its founders,” says Dave Beal, another former SABEW president who has written an authoritative history of the group for the history project.

“It has embraced initiatives in education and training to raise the quality of business journalism, adhered to high ethical and professional standards, celebrated the best work in its field and, probably most importantly, built and sustained a robust network where peers can learn from one another and forge lasting friendships.”

“We hope the project’s launch will be only the beginning of building a valuable historic record that can be used by journalists, researchers, and, especially by students,” Moeller added. “With our industry and craft so fundamentally changed by technology, it’s more important than ever to have centralized places to provide information and share the marvelous work that generations of business journalists have done.”

Another history of business journalism site can be found at www.bizjournalismhistory.org.


SABEW announces Best in Business winners


The Society of American Business Editors and Writers (SABEW) has announced winners of its 18th Best in Business competition, which honors excellence in business journalism across all news platforms.

Click here for the complete list of winners.

The 134 winners represent all corners of business journalism, from the Providence Journal to The Wall Street Journal, from American Banker to National Underwriter Life & Health, from CNBC to Southern California Public Radio. Bloomberg News and its related magazines, Bloomberg Markets and Bloomberg Businessweek, led  with 14 wins; The New York Times had nine winners, and The Huffington Post and CNBC had five each.

“This year’s contest not only had the most entries ever (1,120), but they came from the largest and most diverse group of publications we’ve seen, from online startups to non-profit investigative journalism groups to newspapers to broadcast outlets,” said Jill Jorden Spitz, SABEW president and senior editor for the Arizona Daily Star in Tucson.

“This year’s winners should be especially proud because changes to the contest made it tougher than ever to win — judging panels were given strict guidelines about how many prizes they could award based on the number of entries per category.”

Awards will be presented Friday, April 5, at the Marvin Conference Center at George Washington University. SABEW’s 50th annual conference and gala runs April 4-6 and features Federal Reserve vice chair Janet Yellen, AOL chairman Tim Armstrong, former Office of Management and Budget chief David Stockman, and business TV personality Jim Cramer.

More than 200 working journalists and academics served as judges, sifting through the record 1,120 entries from 195 news outlets across 68 categories.

Judges’ comments will be available on the SABEW website later this week.

Jacquellinne Mejia

Two biz reporters win Reynolds fellowship to SABEW


The Donald W. Reynolds National Center for Business Journalism has awarded two journalists a $1,000 fellowship each to attend the 50th annual conference of the Society of American Business Editors and Writers (SABEW) in Washington April 4-6.

As part of the fellowship, Jacquelinne Mejia, a producer/correspondent for EC Hispanic Media in California, and Darren L. Sands, money editor for BlackEnterprise.com in New York, will also attend the Reynolds Center’s training at the conference.

Mejia has reported at the bilingual media company, EC Hispanic Media, in Norwalk, Calif., since graduating from the University of Missouri School of Journalism in May 2011. She was selected last year for the McGraw-Hill Markets Reporting Program at the International Center for Journalists. In her Twitter profile, she describes herself as a “cosmopolitan Angeleno, proud supporter of Mizzou things {black and gold} and a multimedia producer with a love for business news.”

Sands has covered the business of sports since joining BlackEnterprise.com in September 2012. He is a former Mary C. Wright Fellow at the Village Voice and a Schomburg-Mellon Humanities Fellow at the New York Public Library. He studied communications and history at Hofstra University. He wrote in his application essay: “A few editors have expressed their desire to see me become the next Darren Rovell,” referring to the sports business reporter for ESPN. He says he’s resisted the cliched response: “No, I want to become the next Darren Sands.”

Read more here.

Jim Cramer

Cramer to keynote SABEW’s 50th anniversary gala


CNBC “Mad Money” host Jim Cramer will be keynote speaker at the Society of American Business Editors and Writers 50th anniversary gala on Saturday, April 6.

“Cramer is an iconic figure who has contributed greatly to business journalism,” says Jill Jorden Spitz, SABEW president and assistant managing editor/business of the Arizona Star

About 350 persons will attend the black-tie-optional gala at the historic Renaissance Mayflower Hotel in Washington.  Conference goers will attend the gala as part of registration to the conference, which will be held at the Marvin Center at George Washington University. Tickets to the gala only are $150, and tables of 10 are $1,450.

Proceeds benefit SABEW’s educational outreach, and a portion of the ticket price is tax deductible.

Kai Ryssdal, host and senior editor of American Public Media’s Marketplace, will be master of ceremonies for the event.

Cramer, a fixture as a CNBC commentator and host of “Mad Money,” founded the acclaimed business journalism outlet, TheStreet.com, in 1996.  He is a former hedge fund manager and founder/owner and senior partner of Cramer Berkowitz. His compounded rate of return was 24 percent after all fees for 15 years at Cramer Berkowitz. He retired from his hedge fund in 2001.

He’s the author of six books, including his most recent, “Jim Cramer’s Getting Back to Even,” published in 2009.  He’s a graduate of Harvard University and Harvard School of Law.


SABEW sets record for Best in Business entries


The Society of American Business Editors and Writers‘ 18th annual Best in Business competition attracted a record 1,120 entries this year, Warren Watson, executive director, announced Wednesday.

The competition includes entries from three foreign countries, more small websites and other specialty publications, Watson said.

The contest, the largest of its kind, is now being judged.  Winners will be announced soon, with the presentation of awards at SABEW’s 50th anniversary conference on April 5 at George Washington University in Washington, D.C.

The contest included entries from 195 companies, institutions and individuals, an increase of 90 over last year.  Last year’s contest included 1,030 overall entries, at the time a record.

“As the business of business journalism changes, BIB must change too,” said Lisa Gibbs, of Money magazine, the contest’s coordinator. “In a way, the number of media organizations entering BIB reflects the innovation that’s taking place right now in business journalism.”

Gibbs added, “The BIB should reflect excellence in business journalism everywhere, no matter where and how it’s published.”

Some other highlights from the entry period:

  •  Bloomberg had the most entries – 60.  Second-highest total was CNN Money with 38.
  •  Students from Arizona State University had the most entries in the college/university category – 22.
  •  Overseas entries came from Canada, Germany and Iraq.

The competition was created in 1995 to recognize the best work in business journalism.  This year’s contest team included Chris Peacock of CNN Money and Joanna Ossinger of Bloomberg News.

Reynolds Center

Reynolds Center offering SABEW scholarships


The Donald W. Reynolds National Center for Business Journalism will award two $1,000 fellowships to attend the annual conference of the Society of American Business Editors and Writers (SABEW) in Washington April 4-6.

This year marks SABEW’s historic 50-year anniversary. The Reynolds Center fellowship is open to full-time journalists who want to attend the center’s free training before and during the conference, as well as other sessions.

The center will present the following training:

Last year’s winners were Emery Cowan of the Durango Herald in Colorado and Christopher Nelson, a freelance journalist based in Baltimore.

To apply for a fellowship, please email by 11:59 p.m. PT Feb. 18 the following to Reynolds Executive Director Linda Austin, with “SABEW Fellowship” in the subject line:

  • Name, position, media outlet (if affiliated with one), email address, phone number.
  • A resume.
  • A 500-word statement on how attending the Reynolds Center training sessions and the rest of the SABEW Conference would benefit your professional development. Please include in this statement how many times you have attended SABEW previously, whether you would be able to attend this year without this support, and what your plan is for sharing what you would learn with colleagues.
David Stockman

Two economists to speak at SABEW conference


Two noted economists will speak at the 50th anniversary conference of the Society of American Business Editors and Writers in Washington D.C. on April 4-6.

Peter Orszag, director of the Congressional Budget Office in 2007-2008, helped draw attention to the importance of health care reform and how current health care would negatively impact the long-term economic state of the US.

Since 2008, Orszag has worked as a columnist with Bloomberg View and the New York Times and participated as a Distinguished Visiting Fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations. He is currently vice chairman of Global Banking at Citigroup.

David Stockman, former director of the Office of Management and Budget, will also speak during the spring conference at the Marvin Center at George Washington University in Washington, D.C.

Stockman was director of the OMB from January 1981 until August 1985. During his tenure he was a strong proponent of supply-side economics, a macroeconomic philosophy now more commonly referred to as “trickle-down economics.”

After his term as director of the OMB, Stockman went on to a career on Wall Street with the investment bank Salomon Brothers and Blackstone Group, the private equity company.

To sign up for the conference, go here.


Fed vice chair to speak at SABEW conference


Janet Yellen, the vice chair of the Federal Reserve Board, will be the opening keynote speaker April 4 at the 50th anniversary conference of the Society of American Business Editors and Writers.

Yellen, second in command at the nation’s central bank, will open the annual conference at the Marvin Center at George Washington University in Washington, D.C.

The educational event will go over three days – April 4-6, 2013 – and feature keynote speakers from government and business, panel discussions and skills sessions.  It will culminate in a special gala program as SABEW commemorates 50 years as the largest and oldest fraternity of business and financial journalists in the world.

The Federal Reserve has been in the news for its aggressive use of quantitative easing and other measures to stimulate the flagging economy following the so-called Great Recession. Yellen began a four-year term as vice chair of the Fed board in October 2010; her term as a Fed governor runs through 2024.

“We’re thrilled to have such a big-name economic thinker open our conference, especially since a former Fed chairman addressed our first conference so many decades ago,” said Jill Jorden Spitz, president of SABEW.

Prior to joining the Fed, Yellen was president and CEO of the 12th District Federal Reserve Bank in San Francisco. She also is former chair of the Council of Economic Advisers.

Read more here.

Money stacks

Biz journalism freelancers seeing more pay


Nearly two-thirds of freelance business journalists who responded to an informal online poll said that their compensation has risen in the past 12 months.

That’s up from a year ago, when it was nearly half of the freelancers surveyed stating that they had seen a compensation increase, according to the survey conducted by the Society of American Business Editors and Writers.

“After five years in business, I think I’ve figured out the right mix of clients to allow me to do the projects I love and maintain a steady income,” said one freelancer surveyed. “I’ve weeded out some unprofitable clients and focused more on those who appreciate my work and have the ability to pay me a fair rate — on time.”

Other freelancers said they raised rates, found additional clients, or received more work from existing clients in the past year.

The survey received 45 responses during the past two months and examines the conditions of working as a freelance business journalist. SABEW, which is headquartered at Arizona State University’s Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication, conducts the survey annually.

“These results clearly show that freelance business journalists are in more demand now than ever before,” said Jill Jorden Spitz, president of SABEW and assistant managing editor at the Arizona Daily Star. “More business publications are using freelancers to fill the increasing need for content.”

More than half of the freelance business journalists who responded have been working for themselves for more than 10 years, and five of them, or 11.1 percent, report making more than $100,000 annually. Nearly 90 percent of them worked full time before becoming a freelancer.

The survey found that the average freelance business journalist made between $30,000 and $35,000, in line with the survey’s results from 2011. While ten said they made less than $20,000 a year, another 11 said they made more than $60,000. Three-fourths said they make less than when they were a journalist working for a media organization.

Of those who stated they make more freelancing than working for a media organization on a full-time basis, sixty percent said that they are making more than 50 percent more.

Read more here.


SABEW picks biz journalists for health care workshop


Seventeen business journalists from 11 states and the District of Columbia have been chosen as fellows for a special two-day education program on the business of health care, to be conducted by the Society of American Business Editors and sponsored by The Commonwealth Fund.

The program will be held at Reuters headquarters at 3 Times Square in New York City on Jan. 17-18, announced Warren Watson, executive director of SABEW, the world’s largest and oldest fraternity of business and financial journalists.

It will be the first of several special programs in SABEW’s 50th anniversary year.

The Commonwealth Fund awarded a grant to SABEW to develop the two-day symposium in New York City.

SABEW and Commonwealth have teamed up before to offer specialized education in healthcare reporting.  It is the fifth such grant the Commonwealth Fund has awarded to SABEW, which has conducted a dozen open workshops and other activities on the business of health care under Commonwealth’s sponsorship since 2007.

“Issues surrounding the nation’s health care continue to be a major business story.  We’re pleased that the Commonwealth Fund is working with us again.  We have a terrific cast of fellows for this program,” said Watson, who is developing the training program and serve as moderator.

The symposium will be geared to reporters with some experience in health care reporting from media companies nationwide.

The fellows were selected through a national application process. The list can be found here.