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NEWS ITEM

October 2004
THE NATIONAL ARTS JOURNALISM PROGRAM IS PLEASED TO ANNOUNCE
additions and changes to its advisory board. Originally instituted to advise the NAJP on fellowship selections and program initiatives, the board is being restructured to assist the NAJP in strategic planning and development initiatives. New board members and a changing board structure will enhance the program's reach and effectiveness as it continues its work on behalf of the improvement of arts journalism and the national dialogue on cultural issues.

Two accomplished arts journalists, both NAJP alumni, have agreed to join the board:

John Habich is fine-arts editor of Newsday, supervising coverage of theater, dance, classical music, visual arts and architecture. He previously served as senior culture editor at the Star Tribune in Minneapolis, where he founded the Talking Volumes book club in partnership with Minnesota Public Radio and the Loft Literary Center. After a single year, the club had a greater regional impact on book sales than "Oprah," according to Publishers Weekly. Mr. Habich was an NAJP fellow in 1999-2000. Originally from Wisconsin, he lives in New York with his partner, the writer Andrew Solomon.

Douglas McLennan is an arts journalist, critic and the founder and editor of ArtsJournal.com, the leading aggregator of arts journalism on the Internet. Prior to starting ArtsJournal, he was an arts columnist for the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, an arts writer for the Tacoma News Tribune and an arts reporter for Seattle Weekly. A former concert pianist, he has a master's degree in music from the Juilliard School. He has performed in Asia, Europe and North America and has lived and worked in Canada, Italy and China. Mr. McLennan's new role on the advisory board coincides with the launch of a new partnership between ArtsJournal and NAJP.

In addition, two new committees - a task force on fundraising and program development and a task force on alumni relations - are being established within the NAJP advisory board.

Stuart Wilk, vice president and associate editor of The Dallas Morning News, has agreed to chair the development task force. A widely known and respected news-industry veteran, he joined the newspaper in 1980 and was appointed to his current post in 2004. He has served in a variety of positions, including, most recently, nine years as managing editor. He started his career as a reporter at the Milwaukee Sentinel after attending New York University, Marquette University and the University of Wisconsin. He is national president of the Associated Press Managing Editors. Mr. Wilk is on the advisory boards of Consumer Web Watch and the Freedom of Information Foundation of Texas. He was a juror for the 1997 Pulitzer Prizes and a jury chairman for the 1998 Pulitzers.

John Horn will chair the alumni task force. An NAJP fellow in 1996-97, he is entertainment reporter for The Los Angeles Times, where he has worked since 2002 covering the film business and Hollywood. He was previously a senior writer at Newsweek and at Premiere magazine, and the entertainment writer for The Associated Press. Mr. Horn is a graduate of the University of California, Berkeley, where he studied dramatic arts. He began his journalism career at the Orange County Register. He is a trustee of the Humanitas Awards and serves on the editorial and alumni boards of the Polytechnic School, and for the last two years has been a volunteer teacher with the Inside/Out Writers Program at Los Angeles' Central Juvenile Hall. "These changes will greatly increase our firepower as we continue our advocacy on behalf of NAJP and the wider arts-journalism field," said NAJP director Andras Szanto. "We are deeply grateful to these accomplished friends of the program, and to all the members of our advisory board, for their commitment to NAJP. Their contributions are a vote of confidence in a one-of-a-kind program that serves a vital and growing need."

Also currently serving on NAJP's advisory board are Karen Brooks, arts and culture editor of The Oregonian (Portland); Jeanne Carstensen, senior arts and culture editor of sfgate.com; Jack Davis, publisher of The Hartford Courant; Arthur Gelb, director of the New York Times College Scholarships; Michael Janeway, professor of journalism and the arts at Columbia University and NAJP's director from 1997-2004; Jay Kernis, senior vice president for programming at National Public Radio; Abe Peck, Sills professor of journalism at Northwestern University and NAJP's director from 1994-97; Ray Rinaldi, assistant managing editor for features and arts at The Denver Post; John Rockwell, senior cultural correspondent for The New York Times; Susan Stamberg, special correspondent for the arts at NPR; and James Warren, deputy managing editor of The Chicago Tribune. In addition, Samuel Freedman, a professor of journalism at Columbia University's Graduate School of Journalism, now serves as senior faculty advisor to the program.

The NAJP is also assembling a national council of senior advisors. Further changes on the board will be announced in the coming months.

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