Home > J-Lab Announces Winners in First New Media Women Entrepreneurs Competition
July 15, 2008
For immediate release
For more information, contact:
Jan Schaffer, Julie Drizin 202-885-8100
Washington, D.C. - Three entrepreneurial news ideas - for public storytelling installations, a networking site for Puget Sound’s military community and a news site for and by Latinas - each won $10,000 in a competition that forecast the kinds of fresh and intriguing ideas women have for the future of news.
The three ideas, proposed by four women affiliated with traditional news organizations, were selected from 190 proposals received in only nine weeks as part of the McCormick Foundation New Media Women Entrepreneurs initiative.
“These ideas were sharp and doable; the women were extremely accomplished; and their confidence level was inspiring,” said Jan Schaffer, director of J-Lab: The Institute for Interactive Journalism, which administers the program. “All the proposals had an unrelenting focus on social responsibility, advancing knowledge and building capacity in communities. Many more of these ideas deserve to be supported.”
The McCormick Foundation funds the New Media Women Entrepreneurs initiative. “Recognizing and rewarding women entrepreneurs in digital media reflects the foundation’s deep commitment to journalistic innovation,” said Clark Bell, the foundation’s Journalism Program Director.
Each project will receive $10,000 to launch within a year and project leaders will blog about their experience at www.newmediawomen.org. The winners are:
The Advisory Board of judges also cited three runners up:
The advisors selected projects that seemed immediately doable, sustainable and would deliver news and information. Participating in the judging were: Vivian Vahlberg, managing director of Northwestern University’s Media Management Center; Chhayal Parikh, mobile journalist for U.S. News & World Report; Cynthia Miller, regional vice president of WrightWay Consulting, Inc.; Sara Melillo, Program Officer for the McCormick Foundation’s Journalism Program; Lee Becker, director of the Cox Center for International Mass Communication Training and Research at the University of Georgia; Maurine Beasley, professor emeritus at the University of Maryland’s Merrill College of Journalism and author of “Taking Their Place: A Documentary History of Women and Journalism”; Amy Eisman, director of Writing Programs at the American University School of Communication; and J-Lab’s Jan Schaffer and associate director Julie Drizin. Hear their feedback: http://vimeo.com/1358466
Of the 190 proposals:
The McCormick Foundation New Media Women Entrepreneurs (NMWE) is a unique initiative addressing opportunity and innovation, recruitment and retention for women in journalism by spotlighting their ingenuity and entrepreneurial abilities. Pilot projects will show what can be done. Research will tell what more to do. A summit in 2009 will showcase women’s creative ideas.
The McCormick Foundation advances the ideals of a free, democratic society by investing in children, communities and country.
J-Lab, a center of American University’s School of Communication in Washington, D.C., helps journalists and citizens use digital technologies to develop new ways for people to participate in public life with projects on innovations in journalism, citizen media, interactive news stories, entrepreneurship, training and research and publications.
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