RTDNA celebrated successes, honorees won awards, candidates campaigned, and the current chair confirmed his successors.
The executive director and former chairman of RTDNA, Dan Shelley quickly amped up the energy of the room when he shared the organization’s achievements over the past year.
From upgrading webinar training to planning innovative workshops, the organization “has had a very active year,” Shelley said.
As of now, 16 corporate member companies have partnered with RTDNA.
Shelley eagerly announced the newly implemented award honoring audio podcasts and handed off the microphone to RTDNA’s current chairman, Jerry Walsh, to announce the recipients of the existing awards.
The moment Walsh took the stage, he expressed appreciation for his fellow members and their accomplishments.
Three of those members won awards for their outstanding devotion to the foundation. Brandon Mercer, Edward Murrow award winner, received the Bob Priddy Award for his service to RTDNA.
Mercer, the senior director of product development for Hearst Bay Area, said working with the organization “has been the highlight of [his] career.”
Kate McGarrity, the RTDNA awards and programs manager, earned the Rob Downey Citation. Walsh said, “it takes somebody to make sure that the competition is executed with the highest standards,” and he agreed McGarrity was that somebody.
Scott Libin, the RTDNF chair, presented the Barney Oldfield Distinguished Service Award to Paul Golden, the managing director of media and communications for the national endowment for financial education. The award honors Golden for his contributions to the growth and success of the foundation.
Shelley is pleased with the current chair’s stewardship, and he expects the new leadership to continue this trend of growth.
The honorees clearly demonstrate the quality of contributions that exemplify the value of RTDNA as an organization. However, to maintain that value, RTDNA must also continue to grow in diversity.
“We are in need of new voices,” Shelley said during his address.
Those voices will be decided by election later this week, but members don’t have to wait to know who their new chair and chair-elect will be.
On Saturday, the gavel will pass to the first chair of African descent, Terence Shepherd, a previous member of the Ethics and Awards committee and the region 13 director.
As for the chair-elect, Andrea Stahlman, the current region 8 director for RTDNA and the news director for WLKY, ran unopposed.
She used her five minutes of speaking time to share upcoming leadership goals, focusing on “fighting for the first amendment.” She emphasized the importance of speaking up and advocating for journalists and their accessibility.