Lifetime achievement award: Javier Errea

By John Grimwade and Juan Velasco

[Transcript from presentation made Saturday Sept. 25, 2010 in Denver]

Javier has had an incredibly broad impact in our industry. It’s an impressive list. So let’s get to it!

First, there’s the design work he’s done with InnovAtion International Media Consulting Group and his own company, Errea Comunicación. His team, based in Pamplona, Spain, specializes in newspaper design, editorial, graphic and web design, and journalism consulting in general. His high impact, intelligent work can be seen in publications across Europe, South America and the Middle East. Smart, innovative solutions, with journalistic flair, his work reflects the core values of everything this organization sets out to promote.

And he has contributed deeply and consistently to SND for a decade. He organizes the Malofiej conference – the world’s premier information graphics event. He organizes the ñh event – which assembles great speakers and honors the best of news design in Spain and Portugal. He also produces a book for that every year. And… he is the president of SND/E. For years, he has organized trips to the annual conferences for groups of Spanish journalists.

This year, Javier was instrumental in helping organize the first ever SND events in Milan and Rome. The popular seminars brought in 200 people.

And somehow, in amongst all this, he teaches a class in visual journalism at the University of Navarra.

Now I’d like to say something about Javier from the perspective of an infographic enthusiast. Through the Malofiej Awards and conference, Javier has dramatically raised the standards for information graphics throughout the world. When he took over the awards 10 years ago, they were basically dead on their feet. The absence of an awards book for three years had led to a precipitous drop in enthusiasm for the whole affair. But Javier systematically fixed the problems. He brought his intelligence and his style into the event. The change was remarkable. A beautifully designed annual, a revived conference with new ideas. He saved Malofiej. It is that simple. All infographics people should thank him from their hearts. And, believe me, we do.

No one could do this without a real passion for explanation through images. When you talk to Javier. you know right away that here is a person who is completely committed to the craft. He will tell you that although we are in a difficult transitional period, we are also in an age of unprecedented information, and visual-storytelling has more potential than ever. It’s a message of optimism, And one we can all carry with us from Denver, and into 2011.

Creative and innovative, modest and unassuming, welcoming and supportive. A true friend to SND, and an inspiration to us all.

For all these reasons, we honor Javier Errea with the SND’s Lifetime Achievement Award.

Ladies and gentlemen, Javier Errea!