13 teachers receive JEA Lifetime Achievement Award
The Journalism Education Association has selected its 2014 Lifetime Achievement Award honorees. JEA presents this award to journalism teacher/adviser retirees for lifetime dedication to journalism education. The award recipients will be recognized Nov. 8 at the JEA/NSPA Fall National High School Journalism Convention in Washington, D.C.
The 13 honorees are as follows:
• Bob Bair, MJE, Blair, Neb.
• Linda Ballew, MJE, Great Falls, Mont.
• Michael Doyle, CJE, Belvidere, Ill.
• Carol R. Eanes, Morganton, N.C.
• Jack Kennedy, MJE, Highlands Ranch, Colo.
• Kay Locey, CJE, Puyallup, Wash.
• David Massy, CJE, Lenexa, Kan.
• Jim McGonnell, New Smyrna Beach, Fla.
• Barbara McLachlan, CJE, Durango, Colo.
• Jeff Nardone, formerly of Grosse Pointe Park, Mich.
• Carol Neal, Pompano Beach, Fla.
• Diane E. Schutt, Fairbury, Neb.
• Ann Visser, MJE, Pella, Iowa
Bob Bair, MJE, Blair, Neb.
Bair retired in May after 40 years of service to Bair High School. He was the school’s yearbook adviser and journalism teacher. He not only served his school and community, he was a leader in the Nebraska High School Press Association and on the national JEA board, including four years as vice president.
“His students have won awards, but more importantly, they have become more responsible citizens of the world and consumers of and contributors to the media,” wrote nominator Martha Kalkowski of Marian High School in Omaha, Nebraska.
Bair has been honored by multiple associations for his work.
“For me — and I know I speak for many colleagues — Bob’s most endearing quality is his empathy,” said Rod Howe, a retired adviser from Omaha (Nebraska) Westside High School. “For us, he is a dear friend who is always available to listen and share war stories. Students, former students and colleagues know he is someone who sincerely cares about our lives.”
Bair’s daughter, Courtney Archer, MJE, formerly a media adviser at Elkhorn South High School in Omaha, Nebraska, will succeed her father as the adviser at Blair High School.
Linda Ballew, MJE, Great Falls, Mont.
Ballew retired in May after 39 years of service to Great Falls High School. She was the school’s yearbook adviser and journalism teacher. She not only served her school and community, she was the Montana state director for JEA and a Montana Journalism Education Association executive board member.
A lifelong learner who added a master’s degree after beginning her career and became a JEA Master Journalism Educator, Ballew modeled this for her students. “As the media landscape changed in recent years with the introduction of new technologies, Linda has never shied away from the changes”, wrote nominator Beth Britton of C.M. Russell High School, Great Falls. “Instead, she embraced them and helped her students navigate the world of websites, social media and QR codes,”
Multiple associations have honored Ballew for her work. She was named the Dow Jones News Fund National High School Journalism Teacher of the Year in 2005 and JEA Distinguished Yearbook Adviser in 2006.
A strong advocate for First Amendment rights, Ballew fostered a positive working relationship with her principal, Fred Anderson.
“It is important to illustrate the level of trust and positive working relationship that developed between Ms. Ballew and me. Adversity between principals and journalism teachers, particularly over First Amendment interpretation, is more common than not in high schools,” Anderson wrote. ”The opposite was true at Great Falls High School. Ms. Ballew always approached her responsibility as a journalism teacher with the highest levels of integrity, professionalism, and journalistic responsibility.”
Michael Doyle, CJE, Belvidere, Ill.
Doyle retired in May after 15 years in Belvidere high schools, the first eight at Belvidere High School and later at Belvidere North High School. He was the school’s yearbook adviser and journalism teacher. Doyle previously taught journalism at Rock Valley College in Rockford, Illinois, and worked as a sports writer.
A former member of the Kettle Moraine Press Association board, Doyle was named the group’s Newspaper Adviser of the Year in 2005 and entered its Hall of Fame in 2013 with two former editors, Andrea Behling and Rachel Tripp.
“It is impossible to write down in a single letter all Mike did as my newspaper adviser that helped me and so many others fall in love with print journalism. From the daily words of wisdom in the classroom to the campus visits years after graduation, Mike has been a steadfast influence in my life—and I’m not the only one,” Behling, now a practicing journalist, wrote.
Doyle’s impact has gone beyond his own students. “Proof that Mike has made a lasting impact on his students to achieve includes my own daughter, Brittany, who had the privilege of observing Mike’s classes for one semester at BHS,” JEA mentor Barbara “Babs” Erickson of Cherry Valley, Illinois, wrote. “She was not positive at the time that teaching journalism was the career path she wanted to take, but after her experience with Mike, she made the decision. She has been a beginning journalism, yearbook, and newspaper teacher/adviser at Rockford East High School for the past seven years.”
Recently, Doyle was presented the 2014 James A. Tidwell Award (previously known as the Illinois Journalism Education Association Educator of the Year).
Carol R. Eanes, Morganton, N.C.
Eanes recently retired from Eugene Ashley High School in Wilmington, North Carolina. She advised journalism in five different schools across the state in 30 years of teaching, building strong programs in each. She most recently served as the yearbook adviser at East Surry High School in Pilot Mountain, East Rowan High School in Granite Quarry and Pender High School in Burgaw and was named teacher of the year in each of these districts.
“Carol has been a leader in yearbook journalism in our state. As a long-time leader on the board of North Carolina Scholastic Media Adviser Association’s board, she provided valuable insights into yearbook journalism instruction and workshop structure,” wrote Monica Hill, NCSMA director.
Eanes is a National Board Certified Teacher. She has served as a leader in NCSMA and has taught in the yearbook division of the organization’s summer workshop.
“My staffs always looked forward to receiving our exchange copies of her students’ publications. Carol was sad to leave each of these programs that she worked hard to build, but she did so to accommodate her husband Tom’s coaching career. In that respect, she became a ‘missionary’ spreading a culture of sound journalism instruction across our state,” wrote nominator Brenda Gorsuch of West Henderson High School in Hendersonville, North Carolina.
Eanes currently serves scholastic journalism as a JEA mentor working with new advisers in the state.
Jack Kennedy, MJE, Highlands Ranch, Colo.
Kennedy retired from the high school classroom in 2010 from Rock Canyon High School, Highlands Ranch, Colorado. He previously taught in three other schools starting in 1976 including City High School in Iowa City, Iowa. He remains active as the executive director of the Colorado State Press Association and as an instructor at Colorado State University and at Metropolitan State University in Denver.
“There is no doubt that Jack is a gifted, born teacher, whose students have won hundreds of awards, but it is the impact that he has had had on the lives of his family, thousands of students (from classroom to conventions to workshops around the country) and hundreds of teachers that makes him more than qualified for the Lifetime Achievement Award,” wrote Kathleen Kennedy, Jack’s wife of 43 years.
Kennedy has served JEA in a variety of roles including as president from 2007-2011. He has received a long list of major scholastic journalism awards including the Dow Jones News Fund National High School Journalism Teacher of the Year in 1993 and JEA’s highest service honor, the Carl Towley Award in 2003.
“He is/was/will be the best servant and advocate ever in our profession,” wrote current JEA President Mark Newton of Mountain Vista High School, Highlands Ranch, Colorado. “While his students and program were always his priority, he always gave his remaining time and energy to making his colleagues and the profession better. His vision and work ethic on the JEA board of directors, at the state level in Iowa and Colorado and within his school district, created viable and reliable programs, organizations and advisers to spread the good word and work.”
Kay Locey, CJE, Puyallup, Wash.
Locey retired from Gov. John R. Rogers High School in Puyallup in May 2013. She served as the newspaper adviser for The Commoner for 26 years and was named Washington’s 2008 Adviser of the Year.
She has been a board member for the Washington Journalism Education Association and frequent presenter at state and national conventions.
“Kay’s first JEA/NSPA national convention was the 1989 Anaheim Convention, and from that point on she didn’t miss a single national convention until 2013 when, a week before she was to take a group of students to the San Francisco convention, she broke her ankle. Despite being angry and in pain, she made sure her students still went to San Francisco, making last-minute arrangements for adequate adult supervision,” said WJEA Executive Director Kathy Schrier, MJE.
Locey continues to serve scholastic journalism as a JEA mentor and workshop instructor.
“Kay held students to high standards, and she let them determine the direction of the paper. It is the mark of a great educator when she is as comfortable at the back of the classroom as she is at the front. I aspired to be an educator like Kay Locey, and everyone should,” wrote Logan Aimone, MJE, a former Washington adviser now working for School Newspapers Online.
David Massy, CJE, Lenexa, Kan.
Massy retired from Walsworth Publishing Co. in Overland Park, Kansas, in May 2014. Massy served more than 35 years in scholastic journalism, first as a high school adviser at Howe High School, Indianapolis, Indiana, and then at Burlington (Iowa) High School.
Massy joined Walsworth as its marketing director in 1989.
“He’s been a standard at state and national conventions recognizing and championing student and adviser achievements,” nominator Ann Akers, MJE, of Herff Jones wrote. “Promoting good journalism and helping bolster the credibility of yearbooks as journalistic publications have been a part of everything David Massy has done. He provides opportunities and resources for education, for recognition and for networking as well as personal support.”
Massy has received the National Scholastic Press Association’s Pioneer Award and JEA’s Medal of Merit.
“I first met David at the Ball State Journalism Workshops when he directed the adviser education strand. Then, as until when he retired, and I suspect still, he worked to help others succeed. His friendship is one I cherish over the span of our careers,” wrote Casey Nichols, CJE, JEA Awards Committee chair and journalism adviser at Rocklin (California) High School.
Jim McGonnell, New Smyrna Beach, Fla.
McGonnell retired after 35 years advising newspaper and broadcast at Findlay (Ohio) High School.
“When Jim retired he brought an era of excellence to a close (at least his chapter), which included numerous state and national honors for his students and for himself,” wrote nominator Jack Kennedy, MJE and a JEA past president from Highlands Ranch, Colorado.
McGonnell advised the Blue & Gold newspaper at Findlay, and the publication became one of the most honored in the nation, earning numerous National Pacemaker awards from the National Scholastic Press Association, Crown awards from the Columbia Scholastic Press Association, and literally hundreds of individual honors at the state and national levels. He also began the school’s often-honored broadcast program.
He was the 2007 Dow Jones News Fund National High School Journalism Teacher of the Year and the 2014 Linda S. Puntney Teacher Inspiration Award winner. His daughter Courtney, an adviser in Virginia, was among his nominators for the latter award presented in Las Vegas in July 2014.
“Jim and his bride now live in Florida, enjoying somewhat different weather from northwest Ohio, and he spreads happiness as a Disney World employee,” Kennedy added. “Jim has given his life to student media and certainly must be one of the most beloved figures in the long history of our organization.”
Barbara McLachlan, CJE, Durango, Colo.
McLachlan retired in May after advising El Diablo, the student newspaper for Durango High School. She was also active in the Colorado High School Press Association.
“Barbara brought extensive professional experience to her teaching, and her experience meant her standards were always at the highest level, and her students obviously worked hard to meet those standards,” wrote Jack Kennedy, MJE, executive director of the Colorado High School Press Association. “The evidence was the many individual and publication awards they earned through our state contests.”
McLachlen was named the Durango School District’s Teacher of the Year in 2012. She also coordinated the Four Corners Press Day for high school media students for 18 years.
She long served as an advocate for students First Amendment Rights.
“She has been a strong voice for students’ free speech rights, particularly when those rights were threatened in 2000 with HB1202,” wrote Sheila Jones, CJE, former adviser at Englewood (Colorado) High School. “From Durango, she helped rally voices to speak against the bill at the state Capitol when Barb Plungy and I testified before the House Education Committee to protect students’ rights to interview and conduct polls for news gathering purposes,”
Jeff Nardone, formerly of Grosse Pointe Park, Mich.
Nardone died at age 48 in November 2013 after a battle with cancer. He advised the weekly Tower at Grosse Pointe South High School in Grosse Pointe Farms, Michigan, for 20 years. It is one of the nation’s most respected high school newspapers.
“In a lifetime, you only meet one master teacher and publications adviser like Jeff Nardone. His professionalism impressed everyone exposed to a ‘Jeff’ learning experience. However, my nomination of Jeff is founded in his ability to reach out and offer personal life learning beyond measure. I truly count Jeff as a lifelong friend,” wrote nominator John Cutsinger, CJE,a creative accounts manager for Jostens.
Nardone served as president of the Michigan Interscholastic Press Association in 1994 and helped celebrate the organization’s 75th anniversary. He remained an active leader in the group and a key figure in their summer workshops. The group has established a scholarship in his name. Nardone was named a Dow Jones News Fund Distinguished Adviser in 1998.
“Jeff’s joy of life, family and teaching was infectious and addictive,” wrote Bobby Hawthorne, former director of the Interscholastic Press Association in Texas. “You could not be around him for five minutes without feeling better about yourself, about our profession, about the world we live in. He was more than a teacher and adviser.”
“Jeff’s life on earth was much too short. His death at a young age meant his students, students around the country and his fellow advisers would no longer be able to learn all head had to share,” H.L. Hall, MJE, a JEA past president, wrote.
Carol Neal, Pompano Beach, Fla.
Neal retired in May 2014, from Westminster Academy in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, where she advised the yearbook. Her career spanned 1971-2014 at the school. In May 2013, the Florida Scholastic Press Association named her the Morty Schapp Florida Journalism Teacher of the Year.
“It was my joy to work closely with Miss Neal since 2006 and witnessed her devotion in creating outstanding yearbooks for the Westminster Academy community. The many hours invested allowed the
Optime yearbook and journalism programs to flourish under her expertise as demonstrated by her many awards,” nominator Pam True Szaro, CJE, of Herff Jones Yearbooks said.
Neal was active regionally and shared her knowledge of yearbook journalism willingly.
“I personally benefited from Carol’s mentoring years after I left Westminster to work at another school. Unexpectedly, my employer asked me to assume the yearbook adviser position at a moment’s notice, and I was able to confidently complete the book because of the training that I had received during those years working with Carol and her staff,” Nancy DeStefano said.
Diane E. Schutt, Fairbury, Neb.
Schutt retired in May 2014 from Fairbury High School, where she taught and advised since 1979.
“Diane has great passion for what she did,” Greg Adams of Walsworth Yearbooks wrote. “A deep concern of hers was always making sure they had a product they were extremely proud of. She gave countless hours to the state high school journalism organization to make sure journalism was always in the forefront as a possible career opportunity.”
Schutt served as the treasurer for the Nebraska High School Press Association for more than 20 years. She was name Nebraska Distinguished Adviser in 1989, 2002 and 2007, a feat not accomplished by any other state adviser.
“She lit a fire that has fueled my career and still rages on,” former student Barry Bedlan wrote. He is the Associated Press assistant chief of bureau for Texas.
“That fire has taken to me across the country and to foreign lands,” Bedlan said. “It has allowed me to meet and question some of the world’s most influential and powerful people. It has put me in position to cover some of the most awe-inspiring and troubling events of our lives. It has allowed me to make a living by challenging authority and trying to satisfy my endless curiosity.”
Ann Visser, MJE, Pella, Iowa
Visser retired in May 2014, after advising the newspaper and yearbook at Pella Community High School for 31 years. She previously advised at Gallatin (Missouri) High School and Foley (Minnesota) High School.
A past president of JEA, Visser also received its Carl Towley Award, the highest honor the organization bestows for service. She also received JEA’s Medal of Merit and the National Scholastic Press Association’s Pioneer Award.
“Ann is a career journalism teacher who has touched the lives of thousands of students and advisers alike,” fellow recipient and former JEA vice president Bob Bair, MJE, wrote. “Throughout her career she has demonstrated a strong sense of fairness and dedication to the profession and strong support for student press rights. She is humble and caring and I am proud to call her one of my best friends.”
Visser also served as president, vice president, secretary and director of the Iowa High School Press Association. She earned Master Journalism Educator certification from JEA.
“I would describe Ann as a diplomat, visionary and first, last and always an educator. All of these descriptions of Ann stem from her overriding commitment to students and to her focus on the practical — making things happen that can improve educational opportunities and make life better for journalism educators,” wrote Linda Puntney, MJE and former JEA executive director.
Founded in 1924, JEA supports free and responsible scholastic journalism by providing resources and educational opportunities, by promoting professionalism, by encouraging and rewarding student excellence and teacher achievement, and by fostering an atmosphere which encompasses diversity yet builds unity. It is headquartered at Kansas State University, Manhattan, Kansas.