Please join Northern Illinois Newspaper Association for these special events:

Oct. 29: NINA presents awards Thursday at annual banquet

DeKALB — The Northern Illinois Newspaper Association presented awards to regional newspapers Thursday at its annual banquet at Northern Illinois University.

The Moline Dispatch won the sweepstakes for the daily category and the Galena Gazette won the sweepstakes for the nondaily category. NINA awarded more than 125 other awards in 46 categories.

The banquet featured keynote speaker Jim Rossow, executive editor of the News-Gazette in Champaign/Urbana, who presented “50 Ways to Engage Your Readers.”

NINA has been serving the journalists and educators in Northern Illinois, in conjunction with the Communication Department of Northern Illinois University for 53 years. For more information go to

View the winners in the 2015 NINA Newspaper Competition


Sept. 17: News literacy training free to first 50 registrants

DeKALB ­­— The Mid-American Press Institute, the Northern Illinois Newspaper Association and Northern Illinois University’s Communication Department will present a news literacy seminar from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sept. 17 in the Barsema Alumni and Visitors Center, 231 N. Annie Glidden Road.

Registration for the seminar is $25 and includes a box lunch. The fee will be waived for the first 50 journalists who register. NIU students and faculty may attend for free.Contact MPI Executive Director John Ryan at for more information and to register.

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Oct. 29: Save the date for NINA annual awards banquet

DeKALB ­­— Join us for our annual awards banquet 6 p.m. Oct. 29 in the Sky Room in the Holmes Student Center at Northern Illinois University. More details to come.

Oct. 29: APME’s NewsTrain to make stop at NIU

DeKALB ­­— Journalists, educators and journalism students are invited to attend a two-day training seminar Oct. 29 and 30 from the Associated Press Media Editors at Northern Illinois University in DeKalb for $75. Topics include data journalism, using social media, shooting smartphone video, using audience analytics and watchdog beat reporting. For more information or to register, go to and click the “newstrain” bar. NewsTrain is a national touring workshop sponsored by APME that has served journalists in their own cities since 2004.

Board Members

Upcoming 2015 board meetings: Sept. 11, Oct. 29, Dec. 4

Penny Wiegert, President
The Observer, Rockford Diocese
815-399-4300 /

Roger Ruthhart, 1st V.P.
The Rock Island Argus/The (Moline) Dispatch

Larry Lough, 2nd past president
Sauk Valley Media
800-798-4085 X5500 /

Jim Slonoff, Treasurer
The Hinsdalean
630-323-4422 /

Kathy Balcazar, Past President
Kane County Chronicle
630-845-5368 /

Jason Akst, Executive Secretary
NIU Dept. of Communication

Shelley Hendricks, Communications Coordinator
Northern Star, NIU
815-753-4239 /

Sharon Boehlefeld
The Observer, Rockford Diocese
815-399-4300 / sboehlefeld@

Tammie Sloup
The Times, Ottawa
815-431-4041 /

Jay Dickerson
The Galena Gazette, Galena
815-777-0019 /

Diane Dungey
Daily Herald, Arlington Heights
847-427-4515 /

Eric Olson
Daily Chronicle, Sycamore
Member at large
815-756-4841 X2257 /

Jason Schaumburg
Northwest Herald, Crystal Lake
815-459-4122 /

Patricia Szpekowski
PR Strategies & Communications
847-426-6900 /

Stan Zoller
Lake Forest College
847-421-5278 /

Wiegert (chair), Boehlefeld, Hendricks, Slonoff, Szpekowski, Dungey

Ruthhart (chair), Haas, Olson, Gresey, Sloup, Schamburg

Etheredge (chair), Akst, Lough, Dickerson, Zoller

NIU Departmental Support
Gary Burns
Chair, Communication Department
815-753-7028 /