Under the leadership of its Board of Directors, the chapter membership devotes its efforts to these key areas:

  • Promoting professional development
  • Supporting open government
  • Protecting the First Amendment
  • Advocating for shield laws
  • Understanding and resolving ethical issues
  • Staying informed about relevant issues

SPJ/LA has won many honors, including the national SPJ Circle of Excellence Award in 2009, for its programs aimed at honing professional skills, and keeping abreast of the important issues affecting the practice of journalism. In addition to programs on topical issues in news and media today, the chapter hosts regular informal “mixers” that provide opportunities for networking with other journalists and news sources. And, the chapter members remain consistent campaigners for government openness and a better working relationship between law enforcement and the media. SPJ/LA annually provide scholarships that help worthy college students complete their journalism degrees.


David Zahniser, President: Staff Writer, Los Angeles Times

Ashanti Blaize-Hopkins, Vice President: Journalism Professor, Santa Monica College

Elizabeth Marcellino, Treasurer: Reporter, City News Service

Nathan Solis, Secretary: Reporter, Courthouse News Service

Stephanie Bluestein, Immediate Past President: Associate Professor at California State University, Northridge


Penny Arevalo: City Editor, Pasadena Star-News, Whittier Daily News and San Gabriel Valley Tribune

Joel Bellman: Columnist and Former Political Aide

Tom Bray: Senior Editor, Southern California News Group

Sarah Favot: Freelance Journalist and Adjunct Professor, University of Southern California

Susan Jacobs: News Media Services Specialist, Cal State Long Beach.

Jason Lewis: Publisher, Los Angeles Standard

Frank Mottek: Business News Anchor, CBS KNX 1070 Newsradio

Navid Nonahal: Freelance Journalist

Richard Saxton: Multimedia Journalist, Saxtononcars.com

Roberta Wax: Freelance Writer


Alexi Chidbachian: Producer, FOX 11 Los Angeles

Xavier Higgs: Freelance Journalist

Lori Streifler: Editor, City News Service

Matt Tinoco: Reporter, KPCC

Natalie Windsor: Freelance Journalist

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