Deep-Dive Workshops

Additional Training Opportunities: Breakout Sessions
Sept. 27-29
Free with EIJ registration


Browse through the dozens breakout sessions we're offering in Baltimore! All sessions are included as part of your conference registration — no additional fees apply.

There’s something for everyone at Excellence in Journalism. If you’re hungry for more in-depth skills training, check out these deep-dive workshops taking place Wednesday, Sept. 26, Thursday, Sept. 27 and Saturday, Sept. 29.


Wednesday, Sept. 26

ACES’ Editing Boot Camp

Wednesday, Sept. 26, 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
Cost: $150 for ACES members, $200 general registration (Register)

For experienced editors seeking to move their work to a new level. You'll hone your skills and edit strategically, going beyond editing for style, grammar and punctuation. When you're done, you will have expertise in substantive editing and have learned how to use critical thinking skills across multiple platforms and disciplines.

Presenters: Sara Ziegler, copy editor, FiveThirtyEight; Nick Jungman, director of student media, University of Oklahoma

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Sara Ziegler, copy editor, FiveThirtyEight
Sara Ziegler (@SaraMZiegler) is the president of ACES: The Society for Editing and a copy editor at data journalism site FiveThirtyEight, with prior stints at Law360 and the Omaha World-Herald. She is from Sioux Falls, South Dakota, and is an alumna of Iowa State University. She and her husband live in Brooklyn with their two cats.

Nick Jungman, director of student media, University of Oklahoma
Nick Jungman (@nickjungman) is director of student media at the University of Oklahoma and treasurer of ACES: The Society for Editing. He has worked for two decades at newspapers and journalism schools, including positions as copy desk chief and interactive editor. He has made successful appearances on two television game shows.


Telling Local Climate Change Stories that Matter: Science, Impacts, and Solutions

Wednesday, Sept. 26, 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
Cost: Free (Register)

Please note: You must register for the full EIJ18 conference in order to attend a free workshop.

Climate change is more than an “environmental” story. It affects your audience’s health, safety, food, and wallets. This deep dive into localized climate reporting will cover the wide variety of impacts on our health, economy, security, agriculture, and more. Hear the latest research on the science, communication, impacts, and solutions. Get your questions answered. See exemplary work by peers. Practice creating stories using localized reporting resources; and receive feedback that will make your climate reporting more engaging and accessible.

Trainers: Bernadette Woods Placky, director, Climate Central's Climate Matters program; Edward Maibach, director, George Mason University Center for Climate Change Communication; Susan Hassol, author and climate change analyst; Donald Boesch, President-Emeritus of Marine Science, University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science; Mona Safarty, Executive Director, Medical Society Consortium on Climate and Health; Jeff Burnside, Scripps Journalism Fellow, Center for Environmental Journalism, University of Colorado in Boulder

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Bernadette Woods Placky, director, Climate Central's Climate Matters program
Bernadette Woods Placky (@BernadetteWoods) is an Emmy Award-winning meteorologist and director of Climate Central's Climate Matters program. Before coming to Climate Central, Bernadette spent 11 years as a TV weather forecaster. Her most recent station was WJZ in Baltimore, where she earned an Emmy for “Best Weathercaster.” Bernadette has a B.S. in Meteorology and a minor in French from Penn State University, where she is a steering committee member for MAPS (Meteorology Alumni of Penn State) and currently serves on the Graduates of Earth and Mineral Sciences (GEMS) Board. She carries the American Meteorological Society certification and currently serving on several AMS Committees.

Edward Maibach, director, George Mason University Center for Climate Change Communication
Edward Maibach, PhD (@MaibachEd) is a Distinguished University Professor at George Mason University, and Director of Mason’s Center for Climate Change Communication. Ed’s research — funded by NSF, NASA, and private foundations — focuses on public engagement in climate change. He was a member of the federal committee that conducted the 3rd National Climate Assessment (released in 2014), and he co-chaired the committee’s Engagement & Communication Working Group. A Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, Ed earned his PhD in communication science at Stanford University, his MPH at San Diego State University, and his BA at University of California, San Diego. Previously, he has served as Associate Director of the National Cancer Institute, Worldwide Director of Social Marketing at Porter Novelli, and Board Chairman for Kidsave International.

Susan Hassol, author and climate change analyst
Susan Hassol (@ClimateComms) is a climate change communicator, analyst and author known for her ability to translate science into English, making complex issues accessible to a wide variety of audiences for three decades. She helps scientists communicate more effectively and provides clear information on climate change to journalists and others. Susan has written and edited numerous high-level reports, including the first three U.S. National Climate Assessments. She has testified before the U.S. Senate, written an HBO documentary, provides advice internationally, addresses influential audiences and writes popular articles. Susan was elected a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in 2012 for her “exceptional contributions to the communication of climate change science to policymakers and the public.” See climatecommunication.org.

Donald Boesch, President-Emeritus of Marine Science, University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science
Donald Boesch (@DonBoesch) is President-Emeritus of Marine Science at the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science. He has a B.S. in biology at Tulane University and Ph.D. in oceanography from the College of William and Mary. Don has conducted extensive research on coastal and continental shelf ecosystems and was a member of the National Commission on the BP Deepwater Oil Spill and the Offshore Drilling. He co-authored several climate impact reports for the Maryland Climate Change Commission, the National Climate Assessment, and the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine. He served on the Maryland Commission on Climate Change and led the Maryland-Delaware Climate Change Education, Assessment and Research (MADE CLEAR) Program.

Mona Safarty, Executive Director, Medical Society Consortium on Climate and Health
Dr. Mona Sarfaty (@DrMonaS) is the Director of the Medical Society Consortium on Climate and Health comprised of 21 medical societies representing over 550,000 physicians, more than half the physicians in the U.S. She is a family medicine physician and public health doctor who has engaged in teaching, research, and advocacy for over 30 years. As an academic faculty member with expertise in primary care, preventive services, and health policy, she lectured at national & regional venues including medical societies, health plans, health departments, professional organizations, & government conferences. In the middle of her career she worked as a Senior Health Policy Advisor for the U.S. Senate Health Committee for 7 years where she planned hearings, wrote legislation, negotiated policy, and met with constituents. She is the author of widely circulated guides and publications, including many peer reviewed articles and two book chapters on climate change and health. She founded the Consortium in 2016 after assessing physician experience with the health effects of climate change in cooperation with the George Mason University Center for Climate Communication.

Jeff Burnside, Scripps Journalism Fellow, Center for Environmental Journalism, University of Colorado in Boulder
Jeff Burnside (@jeffburnside) is a 2017-2018 Scripps Journalism Fellow at the Center for Environmental Journalism, University of Colorado in Boulder. He’s been a journalist for more than 15 years working as an investigative reporter, general assignment reporter, executive producer and segment producer at stations including KIRO Seattle, WTVJ Miami and most recently as Senior Investigative Reporter for KOMO 4 News Seattle. He's won more than 25 journalism awards including three national honors (IRE, National Press Club and Clarion) and 10 regional Emmys. One area of focus is the broad category of environmental issues and in a way that draws enormous viewer engagement. Jeff has exposed drinking water contamination from dairy farms, utilized hidden camera video to reveal wildlife poachers, documented pollutants from rock mining threatening drinking water for one million people, has traveled the world covering the decline of coral reefs and ventured to the bottom of the ocean aboard a scientific submersible searching for medical cures. He earned an executive certificate on Corporate Social Responsibility from the Leeds Business School, CU.


Watchdog Journalism for Digital Storytelling

Wednesday, Sept. 26, 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
Cost: Free (Register)

Please note: You must register for the full EIJ18 conference in order to attend a free workshop.

Sharpen your watchdog teeth in a special Investigative Reporters and Editors (IRE) workshop focused on digital reporting and storytelling. Broadcast, print and online journalists alike will leave the workshop armed with new tools and tactics for staying ahead of the competition and producing enterprise stories with impact. Sessions will include Digital Sleuthing on Deadline, Prying Loose Public Records, the Art of the Interview, Turning Data into TV and Online Gold, and 30 Stories in 60 Minutes (quick-hit enterprise ideas).

Trainers: Doug Haddix, executive director, Investigative Reporters and Editors; Jill Riepenhoff, investigative producer, Raycom Media; Tisha Thompson, investigative reporter, ESPN; Wendy Saltzman, owner, Philly Power Media; Catherine Rentz, investigative journalist and video producer, Baltimore Sun

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Doug Haddix, executive director, Investigative Reporters and Editors
Doug Haddix (@DougHaddix) is executive director of Investigative Reporters and Editors. He oversees training, conferences and services for more than 5,500 members worldwide. Previously, Haddix worked as an IRE training director, an assistant vice president at Ohio State University and director of the Kiplinger Program in Public Affairs Journalism. Haddix led investigations and computer-assisted reporting at The Columbus Dispatch for a decade. Before that, he worked as city editor of The Scranton Times in Pennsylvania; city editor of The Commercial- News in Danville, Illinois; and as a reporter for the Springfield (Ohio) News-Sun and United Press International (Indianapolis).

Jill Riepenhoff, investigative producer, Raycom Media
Jill Riepenhoff (@JRiep) joined Raycom Media’s national investigative team in July 2017 as a producer. Prior to that, she worked at The Columbus Dispatch since 1985. She has investigated issues ranging from naughty teachers to naughty mortgage brokers to naughty landlords and naughty guardians — those charged with caring for mentally-incompetent adults. She also enjoys digging into sports and has written extensively about the dark sides of youth, high school and college athletics. She has served on the Investigative Reporters and Editors board of directors since 2014. For the past two years, she has chaired IRE’s contest committee.

Tisha Thompson, investigative reporter, ESPN
Tisha Thompson (@TishaESPN) is an investigative reporter for ESPN, appearing on a variety of platforms like Outside the Lines, E:60, SportsCenter, espnW, ESPN FC and espn.com. She previously worked at NBC4 and FOX5 in her hometown of Washington, D.C., with earlier stints in Baltimore, Kentucky and Missouri. She joined IRE when she was 16 years old and credits it with providing her the skills and techniques she used to garner the more than 100 awards and honors she has received.

Wendy Saltzman, owner, Philly Power Media
Wendy Saltzman (@WendySaltzman) is a three-time Emmy Award-winning investigative journalist. She spent more than two decades working on camera in television news. Most recently, she was the investigative reporter at 6abc in Philadelphia, where she was recruited to start their investigative team in 2012. Saltzman recently launched her own media company to coach high-level corporate management, business owners, and individuals to prepare them for interviews and public speaking. In addition, she is using her expertise as a storyteller to help individuals brand themselves and their corporations. Her services include coaching, video production, crafting strategic branded content and social media marketing.

Catherine Rentz, investigative journalist and video producer, Baltimore Sun
Catherine Rentz is an investigative journalist and video producer based in the Washington D.C — Baltimore region. She has worked on staff at the Baltimore Sun since 2014. Before, she spent nearly a decade as an independent producer and reporter on long-form investigations for video and print outlets including PBS Frontline. Her pieces have won numerous awards such as the IRE Award for Investigations Triggered by Breaking News, the Online News Association Award for Explanatory Journalist, and the Society for Professional Journalists’ Sigma Delta Chi Award for Best Documentary.


Thursday, Sept. 27

Google News Initiative: Fundamental Tools for Journalism

Thursday, Sept. 27, 9 a.m.-Noon
Cost: Free (Register)

Please note: You must register for the full EIJ18 conference in order to attend a free workshop.

Attend this workshop to learn about Google tools to make finding, analyzing, and visualizing data more accessible for more journalists. Among the free tools we’ll cover include Google Search, Google Trends, Google Public Data and Google Data GIF Maker. This workshop will help you unlock the powerful world of data journalism to tell deep, insightful stories and inform your audience in compelling new ways. Learn more about Google tools here.

Trainer: Samaruddin “Sam” Stewart, program manager, SPJ Training Program in partnership with the Google News Initiative

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Samaruddin “Sam” Stewart, program manager, SPJ Training Program in partnership with the Google News Initiative
Samaruddin “Sam” Stewart is a journalist and media technologist based in California. He serves as a program manager for the SPJ Training Program in partnership with the Google News Initiative which has trained over 16,000 US journalists in the past two years across 48 US states. Prior, he was awarded a Knight Foundation Prototype Grant for his innovative work in verification of visual content for journalism and was also selected as a Stanford University John S. Knight Journalism Fellow where his research focused on countering misinformation through technology. His prior work includes senior managing and editing roles at Aol News, Agence France-Presse, The Arizona Republic, and he was also selected as the US Department of State’s 189th Franklin Fellow focusing on media outreach and audience engagement.


It’s Just Video, Until a Storyteller Creates an Experience

Thursday, Sept. 27, 9 a.m.-Noon
Cost: Free (Register)

Please note: You must register for the full EIJ18 conference in order to attend a free workshop.

We live in an age of endless video, much of it just visual noise. This session will be loaded with tips for maximizing the impact of video. You'll learn strategies for producing focused stories that will connect with viewers on an emotional level. These are the techniques that helped Boyd Huppert earn an unprecedented 16 National Edward R. Murrow Awards, as well as multiple Sigma Delta Chi Awards. Whatever your medium — television, radio, print or digital — this three hour investment, will change the way you tell stories.

Trainer: Boyd Huppert, reporter, KARE TV in Minneapolis

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Boyd Huppert, reporter, KARE TV in Minneapolis
During his 34-year career in television news, Boyd Huppert has become widely known for his work as a video storyteller and teacher.

Boyd works as a reporter at KARE TV in Minneapolis, where he produces and hosts the station's weekly "Land of 10,000 Stories" segment.

Boyd has also presented more than 150 visual storytelling workshops across North America and in Norway, Denmark and New Zealand.

Boyd's work has earned some of journalism's highest honors, including four Sigma Delta Chi Awards, 16 National Edward R. Murrow Awards, the Scripps Howard Award and a national Emmy for feature reporting.


Data on a Deadline: Dive into Census Bureau Data to Deliver Compelling Stories

Thursday, Sept. 27, 9 a.m.-Noon
Cost: Free (Register)

Please note: You must register for the full EIJ18 conference in order to attend a free workshop.

Making sense of data and being able to deliver it in a compelling story are critical skills for journalists.

Through this hands-on workshop you will learn how to access and analyze demographic and socioeconomic indicators from the U.S. Census Bureau to enhance your stories.

Whether you are writing about income disparities by gender, access to jobs and education by race, or about economic development in your area, this workshop will give you the skills to independently mine for estimates for your reporting and provide facts about communities across the country. Your will learn:

– How the Census Bureau collects and publishes data on topics such as income, education, race, ethnicity, housing, and the economy.
– Understand the availability and limitations of datasets.
– Where and how to access the data you need.
– Making sense of data for your reporting.
– How to create data maps on the fly.
– Online data resources for reporters.

Trainers: Virginia Hyer, Public Affairs Specialist, U.S. Census Bureau; Alexandra Barker, Data Dissemination Specialist, U.S. Census Bureau; Jewel Jordan, Public Affairs Specialist, U.S. Census Bureau

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Virginia Hyer, Public Affairs Specialist, U.S. Census Bureau
Virginia Hyer joined the Census Bureau in 2011 as a summer intern, where she worked on 2010 Census state-data releases and the communications campaign for the America’s Economy mobile app. In 2013, she became a permanent member of the Media Relations Branch in the Public Information Office and focuses on communication strategy, media relations and social media. In 2016, Virginia took a detail to the Department of Commerce, Office of the Secretary, Office of Public Affairs. There, she served as a press secretary to Secretary Pritzker and coordinated interviews with Fortune 500 companies’ press teams on joint media appearances with the Secretary of Commerce. Virginia received the Department of Commerce Gold Medal award for her work on the America’s Economy Mobile app. She has also received two National Association of Government Communicators honorable mentions for her work on the American Community Survey local news releases and the 10-year anniversary Hurricane Katrina Facts for Features. She received the Director’s Innovation Award for her work on the Science, Technology, Engineering and Math Interactive Infographic, 2015. While at the Department of Commerce she also received as Special Act Award for her work on the U.S. Africa Business Forum.

Virginia received her bachelor’s degree in communication at Virginia Tech.

Alexandra Barker, Data Dissemination Specialist, U.S. Census Bureau
Alexandra Barker is the co-founder of the Census Academy, and serves as the Data Dissemination Specialist for the U.S. Census Bureau. She joined the agency in 2008 as part of the media relations team for the 2010 Census. Since then, Alexandra has served in different capacities including supervising the American Community Survey in MA and PR.

In 2013, she integrated the first Data Dissemination team of the Census Bureau, and became responsible for building and maintaining relationships with stakeholders and the media in the northeast states through the dissemination of data. Alexandra conducts over 100 presentations and workshops every year to a variety of organizations, including local governments, congressional offices, businesses, non-profits, media, schools, universities, and tribes.

She is currently leading the development and implementation of the Census Bureau new e-learning hub which will offer continuing education courses using multiple formats.

Alexandra received a her bachelor’s degree in journalism graduated at PUC-Rio (Brazil), and earned her Masters of Science in Public Affairs & International Relations from University of Massachusetts Boston.

Jewel Jordan, Public Affairs Specialist, U.S. Census Bureau
Jewel Jordan is a public affairs specialist in the Public Information Office’s Media Relations Branch. In her position, she provides media with data assistance and training, creates and implements communications campaigns, and assists with media events at the U.S. Census Bureau. Most recently, she coordinated promotions for The Opportunity Project Demo Day on November 29, 2017. Jewel is a recent graduate from Salisbury University and holds a bachelor’s degree in communications with a concentration in public relations. She came to the Census Bureau in 2015 as a Pathways intern and became a permanent employee in 2016.


Saturday, Sept. 29

Mobile and Data Viz Reporting Tools Training

Saturday, Sept. 29, 1:30-4 p.m.
Cost: Free (Register)

Please note: You must register for the full EIJ18 conference in order to attend a free workshop.

During this hands-on training session, you'll turn your mobile phone into a reporting tool and experiment with cutting-edge apps. We'll also experiment with desktop data viz tools such as Datawrapper, CartoDB and Google Fusion Tables. Make sure to bring a laptop and smartphone to the session.

Trainer: Mike Reilley, digital trainer, SPJ-Google News Initiative and visiting professor, University of Illinois-Chicago; Victor Hernandez, news innovation leader

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Mike Reilley, digital trainer, SPJ-Google News Initiative and visiting professor, University of Illinois-Chicago
Mike Reilley (@journtoolbox) is an SPJ digital trainer who has taught Google News Initiative tools to more than 3,800 journalists and educators in the past two-plus years. When he’s not on the road doing trainings, he teaches data and multimedia journalism at the University of Illinois-Chicago, where he is a visiting professor. A former reporter at the LA Times and web editor at the Chicago Tribune, Mike served for 13 years as a faculty member at Northwestern, Arizona State University and DePaul University, teaching digital journalism to hundreds of students and professional journalists. He holds journalism degrees from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln (undergrad) and Northwestern University (masters). Mike founded and updates the research site The Journalist’s Toolbox for SPJ and runs the Chicago data site, The Red Line Project.

Victor Hernandez, news innovation leader
Victor Hernandez (@ToTheVictor) is a digital journalism strategist and new media thought leader with keen eyes and full attention toward the big picture of the rapidly changing news economy. Currently collaborating closely with news media startups on strategic initiatives and product development, Hernandez brings more than two decades of professional experience from leading-edge newsrooms, journalism education programs, and technology startups.

Hernandez was named to Society of Professional Journalist’s 20 Journalists/Industry Thinkers You Should Know list, 50 People in Media You Should Subscribe to on Facebook from Huffington Post and the Poynter Institute’s 35 most influential people in social media.


Mobile Journalism: Story Creation in Your Pocket

Saturday, Sept. 29, 1:30-4 p.m.
Cost: Free (Register)

Please note: You must register for the full EIJ18 conference in order to attend a free workshop.

As smartphones and video apps become more sophisticated, the ability to create both digital and broadcast stories with a simple kit that fits in your pocket is now a reality. This hands-on session will leave you with the ability to shoot, edit, produce, feedback, and go live all with your smartphone and a small amount of add-on equipment. Learn how to both create stories and distribute them to multiple platforms with gear you can always carry with you.

Trainer: Geoffrey Roth, news director, KREX/KFQX

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Geoffrey Roth, news director, KREX/KFQX
Geoffrey Roth is the News Director at KREX/KFQX in Grand Junction, CO. He has become a leader in the transition to mobile journalism workflows in newsrooms around the country. He recently completed a year long project converting a foreign-language news department in San Francisco to an all- mobile multi-platform news organization. Before that he built IP-based mobile news workflows for two Fox O&O stations.



Deep-Dive Workshop: Legal Program

Saturday, Sept. 29, 9 a.m.-2 p.m.
Cost: Free. Attendees are welcome to attend any or all of these sessions. No pre-registration required.

9-10:15 a.m.
Media Law in the age of Trump: Are First Amendment Freedoms in Danger?

Will Trump succeed in “Opening Up the Libel Laws”? Is Trump’s threat to put Leakers — and Publishers/Broadcasters — in jail for distributing National Security Information Real? Can Trump Bar ‘Unfavorable” Reporters from Press Conferences, and, by Tweeting, Circumvent Press Conferences altogether? Is FOIA still Useful? Do Trump’s Daily Diatribes against the Media and calling us “The Enemy of the People” have a Legal — and Public Opinion — Effect?

10:30 a.m.-12:00 p.m.
Legal Workshop on Content: Libel and Invasion of Privacy

This workshop will focus on the legal problems which can arise from your content: How you can avoid getting sued for defamation and invasion of privacy. What the plaintiff has to prove to make out a libel case, your common law and constitutional defenses, the differences in defending cases brought by public and private figures, privileges for opinion and using public records, and the effect of corrections, denials, libelous implications and using anonymous sources will all be discussed. Lawsuits for publishing truthful but embarrassing private facts will also be considered. Discussion Leader: George Freeman, MLRC.

12:45-2 p.m.
Legal Workshop- Copyright and Digital Media

A workshop covering hot issues in copyright and the law of digital media. We will start with a consideration of copyright law, because the fact that something is on the internet does not mean it’s free for the taking. What is copyrightable, the fair use of newsworthy information, and embedding and aggregation of content will all be discussed. We will also talk about ways in which the law treats online speech differently from traditional media, including the ramifications of Sec. 230 of the CDA, the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, and the role of social media platforms. Discussion Leader: Jeff Hermes, MLRC.



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