San Diego SPJ Receives Two National Honors

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Your San Diego Pro Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists learned this week that it’s being recognized with two SPJ Circle of Excellence Awards for its work on newsroom diversity and advocacy for government transparency. San Diego SPJ is one of six chapters in the nation to be awarded a Circle of Excellence Award this year.

SPJ recognized the San Diego chapter for delivering San Diego County’s first-ever newsroom diversity survey and various efforts to ensure access to public records and information. You can read more about how we earned this recognition here

Are you an SPJ member? If not, consider becoming one to help us continue this important work. You can join here.


San Diego SPJ Board Elections Underway

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Now that we’ve all gotten through California’s primary election, it’s time for San Diego SPJ members to vote.

Members of the San Diego Pro Chapter are asked to vote for up to seven candidates running for the local board by Thursday, June 23 at 11:59 p.m. Ballots are set to go out on Thursday, June 9.

This year’s candidates are board incumbents Jill Castellano, Kelly Davis and Kristy Totten and newcomers Cody Dulaney, Jakob McWhinney, Bella Ross and Steve Walsh. You can read more about all of the candidates here

Didn’t receive a ballot in your inbox? Email us at spjsandiego (at)

San Diego SPJ Releases Newsroom Diversity Survey Results

How diverse are San Diego newsrooms?

We finally have an answer to that.

The San Diego Pro Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists is proud to share the results of our first-ever newsroom diversity survey.

See the results HERE.

Earlier this year – between February and May – we sent surveys to all local newsrooms in San Diego County seeking the breakdown of their newsroom staff members.

Eleven out of the 20 newsrooms responded. The results represent 288 journalists working throughout San Diego County’s media landscape. While all newsrooms were invited to participate, only one television station responded to the survey.

What did the survey show?

San Diego newsrooms are mostly white and male.

There is a large disparity between the number of Latino or Hispanic journalists employed by San Diego newsrooms — 21.9% — compared to 2019 Census estimates showing Latinos and Hispanics represent just over 34% of San Diego’s population.

Less than half of newsroom respondents employ Black journalists and only two San Diego newsrooms employ Native American journalists. Only one newsroom employs a Pacific Islander staff member.

There is much work to be done to ensure San Diego’s newsrooms reflect the diversity of the community.

Many of the newsroom respondents agreed — and shared ways they are actively working to improve the diversity of their companies.

Some have since hired additional staff who reflect their efforts to diversify their newsrooms – we encourage news organizations to share their ongoing diversity and equity efforts with us and participate in future surveys conducted by SD-SPJ.

We hope this survey is a baseline from which leaders in San Diego’s journalism community can work to improve the diversity of their newsrooms to ensure fair and accurate reporting of the communities we cover.

We appreciate the responses we received and hope we are able to get more participation in the future.

It’s San Diego SPJ Election Time

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The San Diego Pro Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists is kicking off its annual board election.

Incumbent board members Bianca Bruno, Matthew Halgren, Lisa Halverstadt, Elizabeth Marie Himchak, Lauren J. Mapp and Arthur Santana are up for re-election this year. You can read about the candidates here.

SPJ members will receive a link to vote via email and should vote by 11:59 p.m. on Friday, June 25. Members may only vote once.

Election results will be announced by early July. If you think you did not receive a ballot and are a current San Diego pro chapter member, please email the board at spjsandiego (at)