Must be conference season in DC. Or hotel rooms are cheap because it’s so hot and sticky here. That’s why I’m flying to Vancouver to get out of this humidity for ten days. But before I do, I was honored to speak on a panel yesterday (June 25) at the American Society for Newspaper Editors conference. Equally great of an honor was to speak alongside former professor Rich Gordon, friend Marc Lavallee and mentor and role model (and also, friend) Jennifer LaFleur.
It was an interesting experience for me, because many of my sessions address those I perceive as my peers and/or trying to convince students to become data journalists. But here are the folks who do the hiring. And while I act strong, there’s a part of me that’s still intimidated every time I talk to an editor, because I feel they’re “above” me. But I know, deep in my heart, that every editor was once a 27-year-old kid who grew up into an editor, and the editors I know personally are some of the most human, kind and passionate people I know. We’re all people who care about the news, and thus we are united. But this was a big step in the leveling up of my confidence. Had some really interesting chats after the panel, and I thank all of you for your time. To all editors: thank you for working to make the industry the best it can be. And always, thanks for taking a chance on hiring people for what they may become, and seeing us, even when young, as people who can make great contributions. I heart my editors so much. You are my role models.
And, you guys, I got passionate. More than usual. I regret nothing, and meant every word of what I said. I hear there are videos, and I certainly will post the link here when it comes out.
Here are some tweets from our data session — in random order (because I’m also packing).