State Dept. briefing

This page was current during summer 2016; AOJ is merging into the American Society of News Editors by Jan. 1, 2017. The merger agreement commits ASNE to continue the annual briefings for five years.

For a series of reports from May 2016, see Masthead-2016

Index with links to articles below, left side. Caption i.d. for this photo below, right side.

Photo of briefer and participants at round table

Index (AOJ State Dept.)

2015 coverage is in Masthead 2015 

The annual briefing allows up to 30 journalists, all AOJ members or invited guests, to hear first-hand from high State Department officials.

An exclusive call-in briefing on the world Oceans conference has been scheduled for Sept. 9, 2016; AOJ members get an e-mail invitation on Sept. 6 or 7.

(return to main Masthead index)

Masthead State Department reports from recent years (archived from a different web server so photos may be missing and format a bit odd); each has an index of hot-links:

 2014 index: 
Short h
eds: diplomats-frustrated by media performance; Afghan-election brings hope; strategic-balance shifting; climate-briefing was prescient; poverty-security threat to the world.

2013 index: 
Short heds: Kerry stresses budget, credibility; Afghans living better; aid guru vows development not war; Africa expert exudes optimism; later issue: "deep-background" or not?

2012 index: 
Short heds: Arab awakening outcome unpredictable; pan-Pacific relations touchy; Hillary's whiz kids; human-rights-spoofs; war-democracy-media; Afghan women still apprehensive.

(top of page) (top of index) (updated 9/6/2016)

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Photo caption

At table, clockwise from upper left speaker with light gray hair:
Doug Frantz, assistant secretary of state
Tony Messenger, St. Louis Post-Dispatch, 2015 briefing organizer
Richard Prince, Maynard Institute
Neil Heinen, WISC-TV, Madison
Patrick Brendel, Cayman Compass
Jennifer Hemmingsen, Cedar Rapids (Iowa) Gazette
Steve Paul, Kansas City Star
Miriam Pepper, Kansas City Star (retired)
Bill McGoun, Asheville (N.C.) Citizen-Times
David Haynes, Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel
Froma Harrop, Creators Syndicate
Tom O’Hara, Florida Atlantic University
Rosemary O’Hara, Sun-Sentinel (Florida)
Margie Arons-Barron, Boston blogger & consultant
Robert Schrepf, Hartford Courant (retired)
Carolyn Lumsden, Hartford Courant
John Bersia, U. Central Fla. and WUCF-TV
At far right wall, right to left:
Bob Davis, Anniston (Ala.) Star
Robyn Blumner, Dawkins Foundation and Time
Lois Kazakoff, San Francistco Chronicle
Chuck Stokes, WXYZ-TV, Detroit
(State Dept. staffer alone)

Composite photo by John McClelland, Roosevelt Univ., Chicago and AOJ
(posted 5/3/2015) (top of page) (reposted 1/5/2016)

2015 briefing set for April

Announced to the AOJ members-only discussion list Feb. 3, 2015:

The annual State Department Briefing for the Association of Opinion Journalists has been scheduled for Monday, April 27.

This is a front-row seat to history – a chance to hear from top diplomats about erratic foreign leaders, social media as statecraft, cyberterrorism, Cuba, and other utterly fascinating stuff.

AOJ members get a $200 refund for travel expenses. Think about reserving your flight and hotel room now! (Last year, some members had success getting rooms at reasonable rates with Hotwire.) And think about renewing your membership!

Plan to come Sunday, April 26, and you can enjoy D.C.’s free museums and a dinner with a special speaker being planned for that evening.

Registration will begin soon. Space is limited to 30 participants.

(This year's coordinator for the annual event is AOJ board member Tony Messenger, editorial page editor of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. In some past years, non-member journalists could attend; whether that will be possible this year is unknown -- John McClelland, Masthead editor)

(back to top of page) (posted 2/3/15 17:55CST JM)

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