News Archive

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 Platypus 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.


The National Press Photographers Association Announces Groundbreaking Training Initiative on Drone Journalism

The innovative program, in partnership with Google News Lab, features workshops with The Poynter Institute, The Drone Journalism Lab at the University of Nebraska and DJI.

Athens, Ga. (Jan. 30, 2017) – The National Press Photographers Association (NPPA), the Poynter Institute, Google News Lab, Drone Journalism Lab, and DJI have unveiled an innovative program to train journalists in using drones, or unmanned aerial systems (UAS), for their news coverage. The program, which features hands-on workshops and online teaching, is powered by the Google News Lab.

Those workshops, scheduled from March to August at universities from coast to coast, will offer training on safe drone operations as well as information that drone pilots need to study for the Federal Aviation Administration’s new Part 107 Drone Pilot’s Certificate. In addition, the three-day workshops will focus on the legal and ethical issues of drone journalism, community best practices and coordinated operations in a breaking news environment, as well as explore ways drone photography can be used in innovative storytelling.

The workshops also will include NPPA’s legal counsel Mickey H. Osterreicher, who has worked for years speaking on behalf of journalists as the federal government drafted regulations for where and when drone journalists could fly.

“NPPA has been at the forefront in advocating for the use of drones for newsgathering. With that opportunity comes an inherent role of operating them in a legal, safe and responsible manner,” Osterreicher said. “The legal landscape is especially complex because state and local governments increasingly are imposing their own restrictions on drone flights,” he added.

“We’re dedicated to supporting journalists’ experimentation with new technology,” said Erica Anderson of Google News Lab. “Drones present an opportunity for journalists to tell stories in visually rich and immersive ways, but there are still many open questions on how to apply them safely, ethically and creatively for news reporting. We couldn’t be more pleased to partner with The Poynter Institute on the drone journalism program to help tackle these challenges.”

Poynter will be leading these workshops in partnership with NPPA, the Drone Journalism Lab at the University of Nebraska, the Google News Lab and DJI. Additional online training will be available later this year via Poynter’s e-learning platform, News University.

“As a certified drone pilot myself, I know how difficult the exam can be for people who have no other pilot training,” said Poynter’s Al Tompkins, who is organizing the workshops. “Our goal is not to make you ‘test-ready’ but to show you what will be on the exam and to give you the fundamental knowledge you will need to study for the test.”

“Drones are purpose-built context machines. They can, in less time and at vastly reduced costs, give a viewer an understanding of the scale and scope of a story unlike anything else journalists have in the toolbox,” said the Drone Journalism Lab’s Matt Waite, who has become a leading voice for drone journalism through his work at the University of Nebraska. “Just getting a drone straight up 100 feet in the air has the power to change our understanding of how big, how far, how wide, how massive something is. And it can be done safely and for very little cost.”

The program also will feature hands-on introductory flight training sponsored by DJI, the global leader in drone technology and 2016 winner of NPPA's Lemen award for technology innovation in photojournalism. “We are thrilled to join with Poynter to empower journalists with state-of-the-art technology that inspires innovative storytelling,” said DJI policy lead Jon Resnick.

Four universities are serving as hosts and partners for these workshops: the University of Georgia Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication, March 17-19; Syracuse University Newhouse School of Public Communications, April 21-23; University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Journalism and Mass Communication, June 16-18; and the University of Oregon School of Journalism and Communication in Portland, Aug. 18-20.

In addition, the Google News Lab will support a limited number of travel scholarships for members of the National Association of Black Journalists, the National Association of Hispanic Journalists, the Asian American Journalists Association, Native American Journalists Association and NLGJA, the Association of LGBTQ journalists.

Participation at each hands-on workshop will be limited to the first 60 people to register. Workshop details are available at

About the National Press Photographers Association

The National Press Photographers Association (NPPA) is the leading voice advocating for the rights of visual journalists today. As the voice of visual journalists since 1946, NPPA has led the fight to promote and protect integrity and excellence in visual journalism. Its code of ethics stands for the highest integrity in visual storytelling. Its advocacy efforts put NPPA in the center of today’s thorniest issues in support of journalists throughout the country, while its educational initiatives seek to prepare visual journalists to meet the challenges of the profession. In light of these challenges, the work of NPPA has never been more vital than it is today.

About Google News Lab

Google's mission is to organize the world's information and make it universally accessible and useful. Google created the News Lab to support the creation and distribution of the information that keeps people informed about what's happening in the world today—quality journalism. Today's news organizations and media entrepreneurs are inventing new ways to discover, create and distribute news content—and Google News Lab is here to provide tools, data and programs designed to help.

About the Drone Journalism Lab at the University of Nebraska

The College of Journalism and Mass Communications at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln established the Drone Journalism Lab in November 2011 as part of a broad digital journalism and innovation strategy. Journalism is evolving rapidly, and journalism education must evolve with it, teaching new tools and storytelling strategies while remaining true to the core principles and ethics of journalism. The lab was started by Professor Matt Waite as a way to explore how drones could be used for reporting.

About DJI

Founded in 2006, DJI is a global industry leader in high performance and easy-to-use aerial camera systems for recreational and commercial use. DJI products empower people of all skill levels to take to the skies and capture images that were once out of their reach. The company places heavy emphasis on R&D and innovation, and is committed to bringing aerial photography and videography to all. DJI currently has business operations in the United States, Europe, Japan, Hong Kong and mainland China.

About The Poynter Institute

The Poynter Institute for Media Studies is a global leader in journalism education and a strategy center that stands for uncompromising excellence in journalism, media and 21st century public discourse. Poynter faculty teach seminars and workshops at the Institute in St. Petersburg, Fla., and at conferences and organizational sites around the world. Its e-learning division, News University,, offers the world’s largest online journalism curriculum in 7 languages, with more than 400 interactive courses and 330,000 registered users in more than 200 countries. The Institute’s website,, produces 24-hour coverage of news about media, ethics, technology, the business of news and the trends that currently define and redefine journalism news reporting. The world’s top journalists and media innovators come to Poynter to learn and teach new generations of reporters, storytellers, media inventors, designers, visual journalists, documentarians and broadcast producers, and to build public awareness about journalism, media, the First Amendment and protected discourse that serves democracy and the public good.


Mickey H. Osterreicher
General Counsel
National Press Photographers Association
[email protected]

Tina Dyakon
Director of Advertising and Marketing
The Poynter Institute
[email protected] 


BOP Contest Deadlines are Near

This is a reminder and invitation to participate in the renowned annual Best of Photojournalism contest sponsored by the National Press Photographers Association. Considered “the contest designed for photojournalists by photojournalists,” we welcome you to submit work produced in the 2016 calendar year.

We hope you join numerous other photojournalists in submitting your entries to this year’s competition. There is no entry fee and NPPA membership is not required, but encouraged, in order to enter. But, the deadlines are upon us. The BOP Video and Video Editing deadline is this Friday, January 27th. February 3rd is the deadline for all other categories.

NPPA’s Best of Photojournalism competition annually attracts the most talented professionals in four divisions – BOP: Photojournalism Stills; BOP: Video and Video Editing; BOP: Multimedia, and BOP: Picture Editing. The images and stories entered in the competition are created by some of the most outstanding visual journalists of our time.

Traditionally, the contest draws storytelling images and essays about some of the most important issues facing us today. The competition truly is a celebration in the power of photojournalism in all its forms, and its ability to tell the world’s story.

Please contact us at [email protected] or 919-237-1782 if you should have any questions or would like further information.

Video entry rules and instructions are here

Still photography entry rules and instructions are here

Picture Editing entry rules and instructions are here

Multimedia entry rules and instructions are here