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Posts Tagged ‘Diana Ljungaeus’

LA Press Club Responds to Nikki Finke NEJ Awards ‘Boycott’

On the same day that the LA Press Club announced the nominees for its fifth annual National Entertainment Journalism Awards taking place November 18 at the Biltmore Hotel, Nikki Finke explained why she and her Deadline.com team chose to boycott this year’s event. At the beginning of her post, Finke writes:

In my opinion, the LA Press Club seems more interested in collecting entry fees and selling gala tables to its entertainment awards contest than in rewarding high standards of journalism or conducting a competition with integrity. Tabloid media outlets which engage in ‘checkbook journalism’ are allowed to enter and in fact won NEJ categories last year.

Finke goes on to make a couple of valid points. Although the NEJ Awards have the word “National” in the title, this work-in-progress is still – perhaps inevitably – very much a SoCal-centric affair. Today’s list of nominees includes only a handful of non-LA outlets, most notably People magazine and Bloomberg Businessweek. Also, as Finke suggests, the NEJ Awards would benefit from a more transparent explanation of how the first place winners are chosen.

In response to a query from FishbowlLA, LA Press Club executive director Diana Ljungaeus and president Will Lewis have provided the following joint statement of response to Finke’s post:

Unlike Deadline.com, the Los Angeles Press Club is a non-profit organization (that barely breaks even!) not only dedicated to quality journalism but also here to support and bolster the morale of journalists.

Despite Nikki Finke’s attack on the integrity of the LA Press Club’s National Entertainment Journalism Awards, the 2012 NEJ’s attracted a record of close to 300 entries, from more than 45 news organizations across the nation. This is reflected in the affiliations of the finalists.

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LA Press Club Elects New Board Members

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The LA Press Club had their annual elections and chose new board members. Now scan for names of people you know…go on…that’s why we’re all here:

The Board of Directors for the Los Angeles Press Club (LAPC) is comprised of 14 Board Members that serve two-year terms. Every year, half of the seats are up for election and this year brought in some new and old faces. Day-to-day operations are still run by working international journalist and LAPC Executive Director, Diana Ljungaeus, and USA reporter, Chris Woodyard is the President of its Board of Directors.

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Diana Ljungaeus of LA Press Club Explains Voting Process/ LA Isn’t Dallas

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After all the drama of the last week, Diana Ljungaeus, the Executive Director of the LA Press Club, was kind enough to fill us in on the voting process. (And re-assure us that FBLA hadn’t “slandered” the Press Club, which was balm to our wounded spirits.) Not so oddly enough, some of the biggest squawkers aren’t even members.

Ljungaeus explained that it’s important to keep every aspect of the nominating, judging and voting process transparent, by alluding to the problems at the Dallas Press Club. There, members alleged that the now-departed president had rigged the voting–for 3 years running–sometimes in favor of herself.

From her email:

This year we had more than 600 entries in the contest –open to all journalists in Southern California. The winners listed on our website represent the first, second and third place winners in each category and does not reflect how many entered in each category.

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