News Archive

Leah Horner Wins NPPF Yoder Award to Attend NPPA News Video Workshop

Leah Horner

ATHENS, GA (Feb. 11, 2017) – Leah Horner has been awarded the 2017 Gordon Yoder Award for video photojournalists presented by the National Press Photographers Foundation.

The award allows Horner to attend the NPPA News Video Workshop beginning March 12 at the Gaylord College of Journalism on the University of Oklahoma campus in Norman, OK. The $1,000 award, established by G. Gordon Yoder, is designed to help cover tuition and expenses for the Workshop.

Horner is a graduating senior in journalism from California Polytechnic State University in San Luis Obispo, CA. She finishes her degree in March then will be moving to Bakersfield, California to work for KERO-TV, 23ABC as a multimedia journalist during the week and report weather on the weekends. Her goal is to tell stories in creative ways and she “likes the term ‘pants reporter’ because she is the type of journalist to get on the ground or even climb things when shooting, and pants are necessary to be able to move,” she wrote.

The NPPA News Video Workshop builds the fundamental skills needed to tell strong, clear, and compelling video news stories. It is a week of intense learning and powerful critiques that enhance gathering, editing, writing, and presenting stories.

NPPA Sprague Award-winner G. Gordon Yoder was a combat correspondent and photographer in Korea and a network photojournalist covering news, including the civil rights movement in 1950’s and 1960’s. He designed and manufactured the innovative 16mm Yoder Sound Camera, which became an industry standard for television stations and networks.



2017 NPPA Board Meeting: New Member Benefits and Plans to Increase Broadcast Representation on Board

At work during the 2017 NPPA Board meeting, from left, Past President Mark Dolan, President Melissa Lyttle, Vice President Michael P. King and Secretary Seth Gitner. (Photo by Tom Burton)

ATHENS, GA. (February 8, 2017) New and improved member benefits and a plan to increase broadcast member representation are some of the significant changes from a productive 2017 National Press Photographers Association Annual Board Meeting, held Feb. 4-5 at NPPA headquarters at the Henry W. Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Georgia.

“I’m really excited by an energized and empowered board,” said NPPA President Melissa Lyttle. “It’s always a great weekend when we can get some of the brightest minds in the industry together in one room to have really constructive and productive conversations about the future of this organization.”.

NPPA officers were elected at the meeting. President Melissa Lyttle and Vice President Michael P. King were reelected to second terms. Kyle Grantham was elected treasurer. .

In an effort to improve member representation on the NPPA Board, there was unanimous approval to develop a plan to increase broadcast representation on the Board of Directors. The plan will be finalized at the summer meeting and be in effect for the next Board election in November. Board members acknowledge that there’s been an inherent bias in the election process favoring the election of candidates from the still photography discipline. There are many dedicated and driven broadcast members who deserve a voice on the Board and Executive Committee, and their participation and guidance should be ensured through the bylaws and election procedures..

"Our broadcast members represent a vital part of our organization, and it's critical that they have guaranteed representation on the Board of Directors,” King said. “Having a voice among NPPA's leaders is necessary to ensure the still and broadcast membership are full partners in the advancement of our profession, and the improvement of our association. This is the right thing to do, and it's long overdue.”.

The NPPA budget was an important issue. Grantham was attending as a member of the Board of Directors and had not intended to run for treasurer but he changed his mind as he saw the significant work done by outgoing treasurer Hall as she meticulously balanced revenue and expenses for the proposed 2017 budget..

“After the discussions the board had over the course of this weekend's meetings, it became increasingly apparent to me we needed someone going forward to continue Carolyn's standard of maintaining balanced budgets and a hawk's eye for the budget,” Grantham said. Hall was finishing a two-year term as treasurer and was not on the ballot for reelection..

Education was also a topic at the meeting. The board actions included offering discounted NPPA memberships to academic instructors who advise NPPA student chapters and to speakers and workshop leaders at NPPA workshops such as the Northern Short Course, the Video News Workshop and the Multimedia Immersion Workshop. .

Also, the board’s education committee has been redefined to develop new workshops and programming rather than just overseeing existing workshops and programming. The goal is for more training in the expanding roles of visual journalists..

“We’re much more attuned to the voices of independent visual journalists, our broadcast brothers and sisters, and to how we can best prepare our student members for the real world,” Lyttle said..

The Board noted the continuing dedication to improve and expand NPPA member benefits, pointing to new equipment insurance offer from Lockton and a telemedicine health program through Capstone insurance that has just launched. .

In other action, the Board adjusted the timing and procedure of electing the Regional Chairs Representatives and their associates and adjusted the manner in which vacancies are filled. There were also breakout sessions to develop ideas for engaging the membership, education, thought leadership in photojournalism, branding the NPPA and internal guidelines that ensure that good ideas become realities. 



Tom Burton Named NPPA Editor

Tom Burton, Editor of News Photographer

ATHENS, GA (February 7, 2017) - Tom Burton has been named Editor for News Photographer magazine, as well as the National Press Photographers Association’s website,, following the retirement of News Photographer’s inimitable editor Donald Winslow at the end of 2016. NPPA executive director Akili-Casundria Ramsess announced this morning from NPPA’s headquarters at the Henry W. Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Georgia in Athens. 

Burton joined the NPPA staff last June as assistant editor with the primary responsibilities of managing content between the magazine and NPPA’s website, the weekly online newsletter and social media.

“I never dreamed of being the editor for the NPPA and News Photographer magazine but I’m thankful for the opportunity,” Burton said. “Photojournalism has been my career and I deeply believe that our profession makes a difference. And in these times of ‘alternative facts,’ I think it’s important to emphasize truthful, honest reporting.”

Based in Lady Lake, Florida, Burton was an independent photojournalist, filmmaker and adjunct instructor at the University of Florida’s College of Journalism ad Communication prior to joining the NPPA staff. Before striking out on his own, Burton spent more than 30 years with the Orlando Sentinel in a variety of positions from photographer, editor, multimedia producer and eventually Director of Photography.

He was among the first newspaper photographers to introduce video into daily staff coverage. He was a student at the inaugural Dirck Halstead Playtpus Workshop in 1999, and since then he has trained many journalists in multimedia journalism. As a photojournalist he is veteran of a wide range of assignments including political campaigns, natural disasters, Sunday magazine projects, sports projects, and working in conflict zones. He also was the writer and photographer for the newspaper’s A&E Gallery, a weekly column that ran for more than three years covering artists and entertainers.

“Years of knowledge making pictures, managing departments, educating students and mastering new technologies make Burton a valuable asset to this organization,” said NPPA President Melissa Lyttle. “He has already shown his willingness to roll up his sleeves and wade into the thick of News Photographer and that makes me excited for its future.”

Since joining the NPPA staff, Burton has been instrumental in updating the website content and keeping the social media fresh and relevant. He has also been working hand in hand with NPPA secretary and Technology Chair Seth Gitner on the website.

“I’ve been working with Tom on the redesign of the website since he started and he has been a delight to work with.” Gitner said. “He always has great ideas and is always willing to put forth the effort to make sure NPPA is moving forward.”

“Tom has big shoes to fill of the former editor Donald Winslow, but if the work he’s accomplished in the last six months is any indication, he will be a great success. I think our members will have a lot to look forward to in the next iteration of the NPPA website and News Photographer magazine with Burton at the helm,” Ramsess said.



Mannie Garcia Wins Settlement in Police Lawsuit

By Tom Burton

Photojournalist Mannie Garcia has won a $45,000 settlement in a civil rights lawsuit resulting from his unlawful arrest by Montgomery County police in Maryland in 2011.  

Garcia was arrested while photographing police officers responding to a call on a public street in Wheaton, Maryland. Officers Christopher Malouf and Kevin Baxter were involved in physically detaining Garcia who said he was put in a choke hold and repeatedly thrown to the ground. 

Garcia was acquitted of disorderly conduct about six months later, but during that time had his White House credentials suspended because he had been charged with a crime, impeding his ability to work. Garcia, represented by the law firm of Davis Wright Tremaine, LLC with  support from the National Press Photographers Association, filed the suit alleging civil rights violations in 2012. 

Legal fees and costs for the civil suit are still to be decided by the court and are expected to easily exceed six-figures.

“I’m extremely relieved that it’s come to fruition after five and a half years,” Garcia said. “I think this law suit has given attention to the fact that police departments need to pay attention in regards to individuals’ rights.”

In addition to violations of Garcia’s First and Fourth Amendment rights, the suit claimed that Montgomery County officers had a practice of arresting people for openly recording police activity and had been indifferent to such police misconduct. The United States Department of Justice entered a Statement of Interest cautioning courts to be wary of police use of discretionary charges in these cases. 

In January of 2017, days prior to the mediation of this case, the Montgomery County Department of Police adopted a training bulletin addressing citizens videotaping police activities. 

The financial settlement is not the most important issue for Garcia who said this was never about the money. He said it was about the rights of any citizen, not just journalists, to record the public actions of law enforcement. 

“It’s going to have an effect for a everyone, not just me,” Garcia said. 

One of his attorneys, Bob Corn-Revere added, “we are very pleased to have helped obtain a measure of justice for Mannie Garcia, and to affirm the principle that the First Amendment protects the right of photojournalists and citizens alike to document the actions of police officers in the performance of their duties.”

 “Mannie and his lawyers should be commended for vigorously pursuing this case. It is unfortunate that another law enforcement agency had to learn the hard way to respect the Constitution at taxpayer’s expense,” said Mickey H. Osterreicher, NPPA general counsel, who worked with Garcia and his lawyers on this case. 



Capstone Medical Insurance Offered as NPPA Benefit

The high cost of healthcare and uncertainty surrounding the American healthcare system are headline news. NPPA is pleased to provide our members with an innovative solution to reduce healthcare costs called Capstone Healthcare Services.

Telemedicine and the other elements of this program are used by more than 1,000,000 people to make healthcare less expensive, faster, easier, and more accessible.  This program, provided courtesy of NPPA, offers NPPA members and their families the following benefits:

• Save up to hundreds, thousands, or more on your healthcare and medical bills every year.
•No co-pays, no doctor bills, and no deductibles.
•Talk with a U.S. based doctor from home, work, or the road 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, normally within just 30 to 60 minutes. 
•No need to switch insurance providers, plans, networks, or doctors.
•This program works whether or not you have health insurance.
•Telemedicine has been endorsed by ABC News, the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, the American Medical Association, and 50-plus other news media.
•The program covers you, your spouse, and dependent children up to 26 years old.
•Everyone is accepted regardless of health, age, or pre-existing conditions.
•No waiting. Sign up today and start saving on healthcare immediately.
•No long term contacts or commitments. You can cancel at any time.
•The NPPA also benefits when you, your family, friends, or co-workers sign up.
•Costs just $9.95 per month for one person and $14.95 for a family.

Find out more. Click on the following link to read customer testimonials, view the feature story from ABC News anchorwoman, Diane Sawyer, and to sign up. Feel free to share this information with your relatives, co-workers, and friends.
Questions? Call Toll Free: 877-715-2800


2016 Regional Photographers of the Year Announced

The largest number of NPPA members in recent memory entered the Monthly News Clip Contest in 2016. The NPPA saw 490 unique entrants last year and their work was reviewed to more than 320 judges. Even with record numbers of participants in the contest, the entire contest was judged before February 1.

Based on the compiled monthly results, Regional Photographers of the Year have been named in NPPA’s nine regions:

2016 Monthly News Clip Contest Regional Photographers of the Year:

New England – Peter Pereira/The Standard-Times 
NY/International – Felipe Dana/The Associated Press
Mid-Atlantic – Steph Chambers/The Tribune-Review
Midwest – Andrew Nelles/The Tennessean
Central – Matt Gade/The Daily Republic
Southeast – Andrew Krech/The Greensboro News & Record
South –  Michael Ciaglo/The Houston Chronicle
Northwest – Briana Scroggins/The Standard-Examiner
West – Kent Porter/Santa Rosa Press Democrat

Contests in most regions were incredibly close.

The New England Region was decided by 90 points, the Northwest Region was decided by 80 points, the Midwest Region was decided by 55 points, the Central Region was decided by 35 points, and the Mid-Atlantic Region was decided by just 10 points.

“I’d like to thank all of our regional clip chairs for the fantastic work they’ve done over the course of 2016,” said Kyle Grantham, the NPPA National Clip Chair.

“I also want to thank all the judges for the work they did,” Grantham said. “We can’t keep the contest on track without judges responding quickly and thoroughly with results and to have over 300 people participate in judging and the contest wrap up sooner than ever before? That’s special, we owe the judges a lot for that.”

The 2017 Monthly News Clip Contest opened for submissions on February 1. For the first time in several years, there will be a monthly national clip contest judged from the winners of the regional clip contests.

You can see monthly winners in the MNCC at the competitions page here



Monthly News Clip Contest Brings Back National Monthly Competition

After a successful year under the new entry and judging system, the Monthly News Clip Contest will expand for the 2017 contest.

Returning for the first time in years is the national monthly contest judged from the regional contest winners. First, second and third place monthly winners from each region will be entered in the national contest. The person with the most points in the national contest at the end of the year will be named the NPPA National News Clip Contest Photographer of the Year.

“The national contest was a major part of this competition for a long time,” NPPA’s National Clip Chair Kyle Grantham said.

“Our infrastructure and old entry system just couldn’t handle the contest anymore,” he said. “With the success we saw in 2016 with our new systems I’m excited to bring it back.”

Tweaks have also been made to the Monthly News Clip Contest to make entering simpler.

Entrants are no longer required to designate single-image entries with an _01 on their file names. The indicator was intended to make identifying multi-image entries easier but also caused confusion for some entrants who instead were numbering all single-images sequentially.

Now, entrants only need to number images intended to be judged in a group as a single entry in a category with the same slug. For instance, a selection of images from a protest in General News or grouping of portraits on a single subject in Portrait/Illustration would all need the same slug and a sequence number for it’s place in the entry. A single photo in those categories will have just the category code, entrant’s phone number and a slug in the filename.

You can enter multiple photos in every category except Feature Single.

“This was always allowed, but never really made clear in the old contest system,” Grantham said. “A lot of entrants seem surprised when I tell them this isn’t a new thing.”

Help is always needed in this important NPPA contest. If you’d like to volunteer to judge in the Monthly News Clip Contest, whether on the regional or national level, please contact your regional clip chair.



Sarah Ann Jump Awarded duCille Scholarship to NSC

Sarah Ann Jump

The Board of Directors of the Northern Short Course in Photojournalism is pleased to announce Sarah Ann Jump is the recipient of the 2017 Michel du Cille Memorial Scholarship. Jump, a 2015 graduate of Rochester Institute of Technology’s photojournalism program, is currently a staff photographer at The Dubois County Herald in Jasper, Indiana.

The judges had a wide selection of high quality applicants to choose from. Scholarship judge Nikki Kahn said of Jump’s images, “Sarah’s thoughtful approach to her subject and storytelling makes her the recipient of this year’s Michel du Cille scholarship to attend the NSC. Jump exhibits a level of patience in her image making and understands that putting in the time and gaining the trust of the people he/she is photographing is an important element to being a photojournalist.”

Jump will receive an award of $750 towards travel and lodging, plus a three-day complimentary registration to the Northern Short Course, being held March 2-4, 2017 in Fairfax, VA. The judges for the du Cille Scholarship were Nikki Kahn and Linda Epstein. The Michel du Cille Memorial Scholarship commemorates the life of Michel du Cille, a Jamaican-born American photojournalist and winner of three Pulitzer Prizes during his career at The Miami Herald and The Washington Post. Du Cille passed away on December 11, 2014, while covering the Ebola crisis in Liberia on assignment for The Washington Post. 



Covering a Night in a Trauma Center

A member of the medical team's shoe is covered with blood from a patient with multiple gunshots wounds. Photo by Melissa Golden

By Sabrina Burse

That night at R Adams Cowley Shock Trauma Center in Baltimore, Melissa Golden faced a dilemma while on assignment for the Wall Street Journal. She had to balance her instinct to comfort against her duty as a photojournalist.

“That evening, it was a 12-hour shift,” Golden said. “Over the course of that shift we certainly saw a number of gunshot victims, stabbed victims, and people who had been assaulted.”

The world can affect both what is in front of the camera and the person behind it. Golden covered the events of that one night at the trauma center that encapsulated some of the harm those victims felt.

“Witnessing so much literal pain and suffering made me have to have what I call ‘cognitive dissonance management’,” Golden said.

Since the time when she was a student at the University of Georgia, photojournalism has been Golden’s passion. Currently based in Atlanta, she has done work ranging from magazines to the Wall Street Journal and New York Times and others. She believes that being a photojournalist is one more way to tell a story.

“It is one of the most essential parts of the functioning of democracy. It’s really, for me, a civic duty,” Golden said.

Helicopter transport at the R Adams Cowley Shock Trauma Center in Baltimore. Photo by Melissa Golden

The Wall Street Journal arranged access for Golden to cover that night at the trauma center. Growing up watching surgery and hospital shows made it easier to disconnect from what was happening.

“Different types of traumas affect photojournalists in different ways, and it’s not the most obvious ones,” Golden said.

Golden said that she respected that that the law requires a hospital escort who made sure she didn’t violate patient privacy by taking photographs that revealed who the victims were.

“I have never fought against what I have considered to be very reasonable HIPAA requests that I have encountered over the years,” Golden said.

Golden said that when she covered the trauma center in Baltimore, she posted a photograph of a victim who the hospital had concerns about.

“They asked me to change the caption to make the victim less identifiable because they felt that between the caption and the tattoo, friends and family could identify the victim. I felt that was a very reasonable request, and I complied,” Golden said.

It wasn’t until she witnessed a large number of car accident victims over the course of the 12-hour-shift that the pain hit closer to home. She thought she could be involved in an accident just like the victims.

“I had to manage my emotions and instinct for the duty I was there to perform. It was also a reminder that I shouldn’t text while driving,” said Golden.



NPPA Submits Comments on Copyright Office Reform

As part of a coalition of visual artists the NPPA filed comments today in response to the House Judiciary Committee’s first policy proposal from its multi-year review of the U.S. Copyright law, entitled “Reform of the U.S. Copyright Office.” Those comments consist of two parts. The first portion responds to the portions of the policy proposal pertaining to (1) The Register of Copyrights and the Copyright Office Structure; (2) Copyright Office Advisory Committees; and (3) Information Technology Upgrades. The second part of our response contains our views with respect to creation within the Copyright Office of “a small claims system consistent with the report on the issue released by the Copyright Office.” We are hopeful that these initiatives will bring about greater copyright protection for our members. The coalition is comprised of the American Photographic Artists, American Society of Media Photographers, Digital Media Licensing Association, Graphic Artists Guild, National Press Photographers Association, North American Nature Photography Association and Professional Photographers of America.