AWSM staff report
The Association for Women in Sports Media recently announced the results of its 2013 Board elections, and there are a few new faces among the group.
We came up with a few questions for the new faces on the Board. (A couple of the Board members are not new, but instead find themselves in new Board positions):
1. What is one thing you hope to accomplish while on the AWSM Board?
2. Your favorite moment or memory from an AWSM convention?
3. Tell us a lesson you learned from your first professional job?
4. What’s your favorite sport … to play? … to watch?
5. If you could have one famous athlete or celebrity follow you on Twitter, who would it be and why?
Here are their answers.
VP/Conventions: Jenny Dial Creech
2. Hearing the stories from our group’s veterans during our 25th anniversary in Phoenix.
3. To have confidence in my abilities and stand up for myself and my work.
4. Softball, I played for 14 years and I was a leftie pitcher. To watch? Basketball
5. Madonna… Cause she is Madonna!
VP/Administration: Rachel Whittaker
1. I hope to help AWSM gain many valuable new members and increase awareness of the benefits of joining such an “awesome” organization. I greatly value the networking and friendships I’ve formed through my four years in AWSM, and I’d love to share that with other women in sports media.
2. Meeting Lesley Visser in Charlotte was definitely a highlight for me. I’ve always admired her as a pioneer in our industry, so to get advice from her about how to improve my sports broadcasting skills was wonderful.
3. Working in the small market of Lake Charles, La., and being the first female sports writer they’d ever had (yes, in 2011!) for the first year of my career was a good first step for me because I learned to never be afraid to share your ideas. When I got to the American Press newspaper, their website — americanpress.com — had virtually no sports videos to accompany stories. So I reached out to a photographer on my own, and she and I worked together weekly to produce fall and spring sports video series. As a result, I gained more confidence in my skills, both behind and in front of the camera, that I’ve brought to my current job at NOLA.com and The Times-Picayune, where I host our sports video shows, including “Black and Gold Today” about the New Orleans Saints and “Talkin’ Tigers” about LSU, along with my sports reporting.
4. Easily football to watch! And I like a good game of volleyball or ultimate frisbee.
5. I’ll divert from the sports world for a minute and say Lea Michele (Rachel Berry on Glee)! Not only is she an incredible singer and actress, but in the recent tragic death of her boyfriend and co-star, she’s also shown tremendous strength, something I admire.
VP/Student Development: Stacy Hicklin Bauman
1. I hope to continue the momentum AWSM has built with its student chapters and welcome additional chapters into existence. I also want to continue to add prestigious employers to our internship program and continue the tradition of putting together highly talented intern classes.
2. One of my favorite convention memories was at my first convention in Milwaukee. I remember walking into the room and just being in awe of the talent that filled the room. Everywhere I looked were women I looked up to and admired.
3. One important lesson I learned from my first professional job is be open to constructive criticism of your work. Getting feedback, advice and help is a crucial part of becoming a talented sports journalist.
4. My favorite sport to watch is a tie between college football and college basketball and my favorite sports to play are basketball and soccer.
5. I would pick Jimmy Fallon. I think he’s hilarious and if he were following me, I could at least pretend he was interested in my random Twitter ramblings!
VP/Professional Development: Kelly Burke
2. This past convention in Phoenix was my favorite … two moments stand out: getting to meet and talk with the AWSM founders/pioneers and secondly, the closing breakfast featuring Sharon Farr and Missy Farr-Kaye, as they spoke about breast cancer awareness and the legacy of their daughter and sister Heather Farr.
3. Enjoy the journey and don’t be too anxious to turn the page on the next career move. My first job took me to a place (Southern Oregon) I had never been, let alone thought I’d ever live. Yet, those three and a half years in a small market were some of the best of my life and most influential in shaping my career going forward.
4. Golf. To watch, football and college basketball.
5. It would be Richard Branson, because he’s innovative, a true visionary, and risk taker. I admire the brand he’s built and his fearlessness and believe his guidance could help me further develop those areas in my own life.
VP/Digital: Alisha Puckett
1. I’d like to increase AWSM’s exposure, through a multitude of various platforms — and not just add content to add content, but worthwhile articles, tweets, features, photos and videos that further AWSM’s cause and promote the admirable group that is our membership.
2. After four conventions, it’s difficult to pick just one moment — there are so many. One that sticks out would have to be my first convention, attending the Dodgers game and listening to assistant general manager Kim Ng talk about how even in 2010 she still had so many obstacles and challenges to face in her climb up the MLB ladder.
3. In my first job as a sports copy editor and sports page designer at a small-town newspaper, I learned how to exercise patience. Lots and lots of patience.
4. My favorite sports to watch are NFL, college basketball and NASCAR. To play are tennis and volleyball.
5. I think it’d be awesome if Garth Brooks followed me on Twitter. Love his music.
Treasurer: Stacie Shain
1. My goal is to continue to ensure that we are acting responsibly at all times with our funds. Having once been the VP for fundraising, I know how difficult it is to raise money for AWSM. I want to make sure we are spending the money wisely, fairly and sensibly. When members or other organizations give money to AWSM, I want them to know there is accountability.
2. There have been so many wonderful memories over the years from amazing guest speakers to Pioneer Award luncheons. But most of my memories center on the wonderful friends I have made through AWSM. These are friendships that have endured time, career changes, relocations, love and loss. I have real, lasting relationships with amazing women who support each other and whose friendships I might not have had if AWSM did not exist.
3. Like everyone, I learned a lot about myself and about sports reporting on that first job. But the most memorable lesson I learned was to be supportive to other women. There was another woman in the sports department at my first job, and she had been there for a while. Rather than taking me under her wing and trying to help me, she was jealous and competitive. I decided early on that I would never act that way toward anyone, much less another woman in the field. I vowed that I would help young women learn about and succeed in sports media any way I could, and that is one reason why AWSM means so much to me.
4. My favorite sports to play are basketball and tennis, although I am not very good at either one of them. My favorite sports to watch are football and basketball.
5. Honestly, I always have been so busy running other people’s and organizations’ social media accounts that I never bothered to set up a Twitter account for myself. I really need to do that one of these days!
1. I hope to continue helping our organization grow and educate people about AWSM especially young women, who may not know we exist as a great support network. AWSM has given me lasting bonds with my fellow women in sports media and I hope to help do the same for others.
2. My favorite memory was from the first convention I attended in Charlotte. We had an opportunity to ride in a race car for a couple laps around the track and everyone seemed to have a blast. It was part of a great introduction to AWSM.
3. The importance of listening. Too often reporters can fall into the trap of thinking of their next question and not actually listening to what the person they are interviewing is saying, which can lead to missed opportunities for important follow-up questions. It also helps make you more engaged during the conversation.
4. My favorite sport to play is basketball, while my favorite sport to watch is football.
5. Arizona Diamondbacks pitcher Brandon McCarthy. He has one of the more consistently funny Twitter accounts and does a good job of interacting with followers.