RSVP Now: SPJ/LA Hosts Talk and Book-Signing by Journalist and Author Susan Zakin

When Susan Zakin first published her history of the American environmental movement, Bill Clinton had just assumed the presidency and seemed poised to reverse 12 years of Republican policies openly hostile to the ideals of environmental protection and stewardship of the earth. Now, with America in crisis, accelerating and potentially irreversible global climate change, and a former coal lobbyist currently in charge of the Environmental Protection Agency, Zakin is back with an updated edition of Coyotes and Town Dogs, her rollicking account of the radical men and women behind Earth First! and the running conflicts with their more traditional buttoned-down counterparts in the lobbying suites of Washington, D.C.

This longstanding rivalry between visionaries and pragmatists takes on a new and pressing significance in an era when tribal strife has exposed the fragility of America’s democracy. Zakin’s lyrical account of this overlooked aspect of American history follows the arc from the early days of firebrand John Muir to current efforts to link workers’ rights and environmental protection, and in a new Afterword, charts a course forward for all Americans concerned for the fate of the earth.

The event takes place on Wednesday, September 5, 2018, from  7 to 8:30 p.m. at The Association, 110 East 6th St. in downtown Los Angeles. The program is free and open to the public. Parking is available at 545 S. Main St., Los Angeles.

Books will be available for purchase. For more information about the book, please visit

Save the Date: Sept. 5 Talk and Book-Signing by Susan Zakin

The Greater Los Angeles Pro Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists invites you to a talk and book-signing by Susan Zakin, author and environmental journalist, who will discuss her book Coyotes and Town Dogs: Earth First! and the Environmental Movement, 25th Anniversary Edition (revised and updated), and the fate of the earth in the Age of Trump.

Talk and book-signing by environmental journalist Susan Zakin

Wednesday, September 5, 2018
7 to 8:30 p.m.

The Association lounge, 110 East 6th Street, downtown Los Angeles.

Books will be available for purchase. The event itself is free and open to the public.

Commercial lot at 545 S. Main St., Los Angeles

Joel Bellman, SPJ/LA

SPJ/LA Board Member Receives National Recognition

Navid Nonahal, immediate past president of the Greater Los Angeles Pro Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists, has been selected to receive SPJ’s Howard S. Dubin Outstanding Pro Member Award for her outstanding contributions to the local chapter.

The award, given every year to two SPJ members, is named in honor of Howard Dubin, longtime member of SPJ’s Chicago Headline Club.

Described as a driving force behind the Los Angeles chapter, Nonahal has been on the SPJ/LA Board of Directors since 2010. Besides serving three consecutive terms as chapter president, she has had pivotal roles in chapter events, membership drives, insurance research, financial stewardship and more. As immediate past president, she continues to lend her institutional knowledge, unique expertise and optimistic voice to the chapter’s work.

As a freelance journalist, Nonahal has contributed to Tehran International Weekly Magazine, reporting on international and national news pertaining to Iran. At the magazine, Nonahal maintained a weekly column titled “Dear President Ahmadinejad,” which addressed pressing events in Iran and the then-president’s ensuing positions and policies. Nonahal graduated from California State University, Northridge, with a bachelor’s degree in journalism.

Two SPJ members are selected each year for the Dubin award – one from a chapter of 75 or more members and one from a chapter with less than 75 members. Nonahal was selected as the larger chapter honoree. Jennifer Ellis of the Arkansas Pro Chapter was named in the small chapter category. They will be recognized at the Excellence in Journalism 2018 conference in Baltimore, Sept. 27 to 29.

Nonahal was nominated by board members Roberta Wax, former Dubin Award honoree, and the late Dr. Richard Hendrickson.

“If there is a job to be done, a crisis to be fixed, or a hand to be held, Navid will do it, and do it with grace and charm,” Wax said in her nomination letter. “While good at delegating and motivating, Navid will also get her hands dirty doing the work others might shirk, whether grabbing a hand truck and moving file boxes into our new offices or staffing a ticket table at an event, leaving others free to mingle and celebrate.”

Nonahal said she is “honored and humbled” to be receiving the award.

“I joined SPJ because I believe in, and am inspired by, its mission to support the First Amendment and promote accuracy and credibility within today’s ever-changing world of journalism,” she said. “Being of Iranian heritage, I am uniquely aware of the vital role a free press plays in a just society, and how much our individual freedom suffers in its absence. Being a part of SPJ and serving on the board of SPJ/LA has given me a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to foster that role by promoting ethical journalism and a healthy and vibrant free press.

“In addition, SPJ has given me life-long friendships and introduced me to a group of people whom I call my second family. For that, I am forever grateful.”

The Los Angeles chapter has had four other Dubin award winners: Dan Bolton; Wax, a freelance writer; Claudia Peschiutta, a reporter at KNX 1070 Newsradio; and Lauren Bartlett, a former three-time L.A. chapter board president and current SPJ Director At-Large.

SPJ promotes the free flow of information vital to informing citizens; works to inspire and educate the next generation of journalists; and fights to protect First Amendment guarantees of freedom of speech and press.

SPJ/LA Mourns the Passing of Richard “Dick” Hendrickson, 77

Richard D. “Dick” Hendrickson, a much-beloved journalism educator, former editor and reporter and board member of the Greater Los Angeles Pro Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists, passed away on July 29 at the age of 77, following a brief hospitalization due to heart disease.

In recent years, Hendrickson had served as treasurer and was actively involved in planning the chapter’s monthly programs. Prior to relocating to Los Angeles nearly a decade ago, he worked for more than 30 years at the Morning Journal in Lorain, Ohio in a variety of capacities as reporter, bureau chief and editor, including eight years as editorial page editor. He was also active in his local SPJ chapter there, where he had served as chapter president.

Hendrickson began his journalism career in 1961, after a two-year hitch in the Navy, when he became a reporter for his hometown paper, the Syracuse Post-Standard. His work caught the attention of the Associated Press, which soon hired him for its bureau in Buffalo, New York. In 1966, he moved to Ohio to open a new bureau for the Morning Journal, where he remained for the next 35 years.

Hendrickson retired from daily newspaper journalism in 2001 to become a full-time journalism educator at John Carrol University, a Jesuit college outside Cleveland. Even before he started teaching, he was fondly known by young reporters as “Professor,” both for his willingness to mentor and coach upcoming students, and for his dedication to furthering his own higher education. He held a bachelor’s degree in journalism, a master’s in political science, and at the age of 59, earned a doctorate in media studies, all from Bowling Green University.

At the time of his death, Hendrickson was a journalism instructor in reporting and media ethics with UCLA Extension, and had also taught journalism part-time at California State University, Northridge. He also continued to teach online for John Carroll University.

In 2010, SPJ honored Hendrickson with its annual Distinguished Teaching in Journalism Award, recognizing collegiate journalism educators who have made a significant contribution to journalism education and to the profession. Just three months ago, Hendrickson received his 50-year membership pin at the SPJ Regional 11 conference, which he helped to organize.

He is survived by his wife of 29 years, Carol; eight children, Cheryl (Kevin) Randleman of New London, Ohio; Judith (Len) Sennish of Cleveland; Amy (Noel) Bouchard of Bellbrook, Ohio; William (Jennifer) Hendrickson of Batavia, Ohio; Christine Hendrickson of Norwalk, Ohio; Laura Owens (Sohrab Mohebbi) of Los Angeles; Lisa Owens of Austin and Lincoln (Erin) Owens of New Orleans; 10 grandsons, eight granddaughters and one great-granddaughter.

A celebration of life service in Cleveland, Ohio, is being planned, with a possible memorial service later in Los Angeles, although details have not been determined. More information will be shared as it becomes available.

Contributions in Hendrickson’s memory can be made to a scholarship fund that will be established in his name, to be given out next year. Contributions can be sent to SPJ/LA, P.O. Box 572632, Tarzana, CA 91357.

SPJ/LA Announces 2018 Scholarship Recipients

Four exceptional journalism students have each been awarded a scholarship of $1,000 from the Greater Los Angeles Pro Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists. The scholarships are based on the applicant’s potential to succeed in a news media career.

And the winners are…

Ethan Lauren, 22, of Santa Monica College who will be transferring to California State University, Long Beach in the fall, was awarded the Bill Farr Memorial Scholarship. He will be majoring in journalism and is interested in a career involving writing and photojournalism.

Lauren was awarded “Most Prolific Journalist” for the Spring 2018 semester at SMC and has worked as a writer/photographer for The Corsair student newspaper since August 2017. He was selected as the President’s Ambassador for the 2017-2018 academic year and serves as the college’s student representative, photographing official events for the college and assisting with public relations and student service programs. Since August 2017, he has worked as a freelance writer/photographer for the Santa Monica Daily Press as a published journalist of work relevant to the Santa Monica community.

“Writing and photographing go together for me. Wherever I go, I bring my camera and a notebook. I’ve captured smiles and tears that will now exist forever,” Lauren stated in his application. “The feeling is incredible because it’s real and will never happen again.”

Jason Rochlin, 21, of California State University, Fullerton, whose interests are journalism and editing, was awarded the Carl Greenberg Memorial Scholarship. Majoring in communications journalism and minoring in psychology, Rochlin’s goal is to work for a local newspaper.

Although Rochlin lives in Redondo Beach while attending CSUF, he was still motivated to do a reporting internship at the non-profit Gladeo League in Santa Monica, far from his home and school. His other work experience includes news editor at CSUF’s Daily Titan since 2016 and CSUF’s Inaugural Editor for California Connection since 2017. Rochlin’s awards, which cover an entire page, include SPJ Region 11 Mark of Excellence Award for Breaking News Reporting and an Excellence in Newswriting Award received at the Journalism Education Association’s National Write-Off Competition in April 2014.

“Two of the biggest problems facing journalism as an industry today is the dwindling print-centric market and an increasing lack of trust in the media brought about by figures like the president,” Rochlin wrote in his application. “I’d like to be able to address both issues through my work as a journalist, both at a local and national level.”

Imani Stephens, 21, of Arizona State University, whose interest is multimedia journalism, was awarded the Ken Inouye Memorial Scinouholarship. Majoring in journalism and mass communication, with a minor in justice studies, her goal is to work as an investigative reporter and attend law school.

Stephens’ achievements and vast experience in journalism include working as a CBS News investigative intern this summer in New York City, a reporter and weather anchor for Cronkite News from January to May 2018, Columbia Journalism School Investigative Reporters & Editors Fellowship recipient last summer and program coordinator for KAET 8 / Arizona PBS in Phoenix from January to May 2017.

“Developing skills as a journalist and growing up in the inner-city of Los Angeles, I became concerned about the problems affecting residents,” Stephens wrote in her application. “From city officials misappropriating funds to businesses committing fraud, I cultivated a desire to bring awareness as a journalist.”

Natalia Vivino, 21, of California State University, Northridge, whose interest is broadcast journalism, was awarded the Helen Johnson Memorial Scholarship. Majoring in broadcast journalism with a minor in gender and women’s studies, Vivino is exploring how she can merge her budding journalism skills into the performing arts field.

Vivino anchored the CSUN television station twice a week at the same time she created and produced two television news packages,“The Miracle Project” and “Transgender Representation” even before she was part of the class that produces the show. While working on the second piece, she was in rehearsal for a musical in which she played the lead role. Nevertheless, both television packages met their deadline and were selected to air on CSUN’s Valley View News.

“If I could say one thing my experience studying broadcast journalism has taught me,” Vivino stated in her application, “it’s that I have the power to achieve my goals through hard work, determination and an unwavering love for what I do.”

Below is the brief history of the four scholarships:

Bill Farr Memorial Scholarship–This scholarship is awarded to high school seniors or college students who demonstrate a strong intent to pursue a career in journalism. Farr, a reporter for the Los Angeles Times, sat in county jail for 46 days for refusing to tell a judge which lawyers had violated a gag order during the Charles Manson murder trial. ($500-$1,000)

Carl Greenberg Memorial Scholarship–This scholarship is awarded to a college student pursuing investigative or political reporting. Greenberg was a political reporter at the Los Angeles Times, famed for being singled out by President Richard Nixon as the only reporter who covered him “fairly.” ($1,000)

Ken Inouye Memorial Scholarship–This scholarship is awarded to a college journalist of color and is aimed at increasing ethnic diversity in newsrooms. Inouye was a 22-year-old cameraman for the International News Service and was covering the Korean War when he was killed aboard an Army aircraft. ($500-$1,000)

Helen Johnson Memorial Scholarship–This scholarship is awarded to a college student pursuing broadcast journalism. Johnson was a producer of “Channel 4 News Conference” and an associate producer of “Meet the Press.” ($500-$1,000)

Financial need is considered if all other qualifications of competing applicants are equal.