SNDLOU: 5 tips from the original conference chair

Tony Majeri was chair of the first Society For News Design workshop in Chicago.
Tony Majeri was chair of the first Society For News Design workshop in Chicago.

As a founding member of SND, Tony Majeri hosted the first SND conference in 1979 in Chicago, Ill. Since then, he has been a member for four Pulitzer Prize-winning teams at the Chicago Tribune, served as SND President, judged the annual “Best of Newspaper Design” competition, taught visual journalism to audiences around the world, and served as a mentor to countless designers in the news business. Today, Majeri gives his tips for making the most out your time at SNDLOU.

People, people, people, people, people! My Advice is to focus on the many people attending and presenting at the workshop

1. First and foremost spend your time talking with as many different people as you can. Don’t be shy and go around and meet people in our industry. Some that are breaking new grounds and also those that are solving old problems in new ways. To this day I still have many friends from our first days of SND as we were building both our newsroom presence and our organization. We were up all night having meetings and discussing issues facing our industry. We did have a few beers and played poker as well 🙂

2. Go to every workshop that you can and DON’T feature the ones that reinforce your views on things. Learn what others are doing and thinking that may not be your way. I was always looking for smaller papers that were challenging the conventional way of doing things.

3. Get a list of attendees and find ones that you want to meet and ask them questions!!!!!!! Be specific about issues that are challenging you in your newsroom. I was always there to learn new things and different viewpoints or directions.

4.  AIM AT BECOMING A BETTER JOURNALIST! Look for the tools that are being highlighted by the presenters that allow you to build skills to become a better journalist. My goal for 35 years at the Chicago Tribune was to become a truly accomplished visual journalist and also help make SND a viable journalism organization.

5. TAKE NOTES to refresh your memory on the many things you see and hear. Take phone numbers and email addresses to build resource library. Prepare a presentation for your newsroom or department and show the value of your trip!

Click here to register for SND Louisville. To reserve your room at the Galt House Hotel with a discounted rate, click here.

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