Contact Us

Thank you for your interest in the San Diego chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists. For more information about our organization and our activities, please contact SDSPJ president Lisa Halverstadt at or any member of our board. You can write to us at:  San Diego SPJ, P.O. Box 880482, San Diego, CA  92168.

The SPJ San Diego Pro Chapter Board meets on the first Tuesday of each month at 6:30 p.m. at The San Diego Union-Tribune, 600 B St, San Diego, CA 92101. SPJ members and guests are welcome to attend.

The 2017-18 SPJ San Diego Pro Chapter Board of Directors:

Lisa Halverstadt
Reporter, Voice of San Diego
Lisa Halverstadt is a reporter for Voice of San Diego. She covers city and county government and has written extensively about the region’s homelessness crisis. She previously headed up VOSD’s Fact Check efforts and embarked on weeks-long explanatory projects about topics as diverse as SeaWorld’s San Diego footprint and the region’s drone industry. Lisa joined VOSD in 2012 after four years at The Arizona Republic in Phoenix. She first joined SPJ as a college student at Bowling Green State University in Ohio. She’s been hooked ever since.

Vice President
Elliot Spagat
Reporter, Associated Press
Elliot Spagat is a San Diego correspondent for the Associated Press. His reporting focuses on the U.S.-Mexico border and general news on San Diego and the Imperial Valley. Before joining the AP’s San Diego bureau in 2003, he was a reporter for The Wall Street Journal in Dallas, Dow Jones Newswires in New York and Mexico City and the Antelope Valley Press in Palmdale, Calif. He’s a graduate of Grinnell College and began his journalism career in Mexico and Central America.

Andrew Kleske
Outreach Editor, The San Diego Union-Tribune
Andrew Kleske works for The San Diego Union-Tribune as reader outreach editor. He graduated from San Diego State University and has taught journalism courses at University of California San Diego since 1998, where he developed the university’s first online journalism curriculum. Andrew has been on the SPJ board so long he can’t remember when he joined, but he served as president at some point along the way. Andrew also is a former board member and past president of the San Diego Press Club. Prior to joining the Union-Tribune, Andrew was online editor for the North County Times and The Californian newspapers and was the editor of The San Diego Daily Transcript, the first comprehensive online daily newspaper in Southern California.

Jennifer McEntee
Freelance Journalist‎
Jennifer McEntee is a freelance journalist who writes for local media outlets including San Diego Home/Garden Lifestyles, San Diego Magazine and Voice of San Diego. She began her journalism career in elementary school, as a weekly columnist for East County’s The Daily Californian. She also previously worked at the former San Diego Daily Transcript, the San Diego Ranch Coast Newspaper Group and the San Diego bureau of the Associated Press. She’s been a member of the San Diego SPJ chapter since 2001 and edited its SPJ Journal printed newsletter from 2002 to 2007. She graduated with a degree in television, film and new media from San Diego State University, where she also wrote for The Daily Aztec.

Board Members

Claire Trageser
Reporter, KPBS
Claire Trageser is a multimedia reporter for KPBS. She writes and produces in depth coverage for radio, television and the web and covers a variety of topics, including politics, the environment and education. Claire was part of the team that covered allegations of sexual harassment against former Mayor Bob Filner, his resignation and the special election that followed. She also covers the city of San Diego’s budget process, helped create the interactive KPBS Budget Game and does enterprise stories about issues impacting San Diegans. Claire studied chemistry at Reed College in Portland, Oregon. She then earned a master’s degree in journalism at UC Berkeley, where she worked at the Knight Digital Media Center and completed a master’s project with Michael Pollan. She also freelances for NPR, Marie Claire, Runner’s World, Mashable and San Diego Magazine and trains for marathons and half marathons in her free time.

Kelly Davis
Freelance Journalist
Kelly Davis has been a journalist in San Diego for 14 years, first as associate editor at San Diego CityBeat, which she helped start in 2002, and now as an independent investigative reporter with a focus on criminal justice and vulnerable populations. Her work has included investigations into the high rate of deaths in San Diego County jails and conditions at county juvenile detention facilities. She’s written extensively about California’s sex offender laws and the city of San Diego’s ongoing efforts to address its large homelessness population. She also writes a weekly cocktail blog, SD Sips, for San Diego Magazine. Her reporting has been honored by the Association of Alternative Newsweeklies, the San Diego chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists, the National Alliance on Mental Illness and the National Association for Civilian Oversight of Law Enforcement.

Matt Hall
Editorial and Opinion Director, The San Diego Union-Tribune
Matthew T. Hall is the editorial and opinion director at The San Diego Union-Tribune, where he’s worked since 2001. He manages the Ideas and Opinion section, writing and editing editorials, and overseeing op-ed commentary, letters to the editor and a broader exchange of ideas around San Diego. He previously managed the newsroom’s social media, compiled its “Essential California” daily newsletter and edited a daily blog called “The Conversation” that curated the best of social media and the Internet with help from readers. Previously, he was a metro columnist who reported and wrote four columns a week. He has also covered San Diego neighborhoods and politics, the Chargers’ stadium search and the Padres’ TV fiasco, east and north San Diego County. He has been named blogger, feature writer and critic of the year by the San Diego chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists and blogger and columnist of the year by the San Diego Press Club. He graduated from the University of New Hampshire and has worked at other newspapers in Massachusetts, New Hampshire and California. He is married to a fellow journalist, and they have two young daughters. He is a runner, a Red Sox fan, a proud winner of SPJ’s Herbert Lockwood “Woody” Award for humor writing and western region director for the national board of SPJ. He’s looking out for you.

Stephen Goforth
Associate Professor, Point Loma Nazarene University
Stephen Goforth teaches multimedia journalism, news writing, reporting, and digital newsgathering at Point Loma Nazarene University. He is author of a textbook titled Media Shift: Journalism in a Connected World. His websites, including, helps students and professionals stay abreast of changes and trends taking place in new media. Stephen stepped into teaching after working more than seven years at CNN as an anchor, writer and producer, covering stories such as the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. He launched his media career in radio, working from DJ up to vice president of a radio group. Stephen later anchored for a radio news network in Washington, D.C. while working in a variety of TV positions covering Congress and the federal courts.

Bey-Ling Sha
Professor and Director, School of Journalism & Media Studies at SDSU
Bey-Ling Sha, Ph.D., APR, is director of the School of Journalism & Media Studies at San Diego State University, which has nearly 700 undergraduate students in journalism, advertising, public relations, and media studies, as well as graduate programs in mass communication and in learning design and technology. Dr. Sha has presented or published nearly 100 research manuscripts on public relations theory and practice. She is the 2016-2018 Editor in Chief of Journal of Public Relations Research, the world’s premier academic publication in public relations. Locally, Dr. Sha was the 2010-2011 People’s Post blogger on education issues for the Voice of San Diego, and she chaired the board of directors of the Union of Pan Asian Communities in 2013 and 2014. Nationally, Dr. Sha is the immediate past chair of the Universal Accreditation Board, which oversees the world’s largest certification program in public relations.

Lori Weisberg
Staff Writer, The San Diego Union-Tribune
Lori Weisberg is a staff writer for The San Diego Union-Tribune, specializing in coverage of the tourism and hospitality industry. She has won several national and local awards for her reporting during her time at the newspaper and has been the recipient of several reporting and multimedia fellowships. Lori joined the SPJ board in 2003 and served as president from 2005-06. As a board member, she has helped organize several SPJ programs, including panels on using the Internet for reporting and integrating multimedia into daily journalism, and a hands-on training session on how to produce an audio slideshow. During her tenure as president, the chapter was named best large SPJ chapter in the country. Before coming to The Union-Tribune, Lori worked for the Orange County Register and The Vista Press.

Megan Wood
Reporter, inewsource
Megan Wood is a videographer, photographer and reporter for inewsource. She started at inewsource as a photo and video intern while a journalism student at San Diego State University. Wood focuses on accountability journalism, particularly in schools, and provides photography and videos for stories by her inewsource colleagues.

Michael Lipkin
Producer, KPBS Midday Edition

Michael Lipkin is a producer for KPBS Midday Edition. He researches and edits radio segments covering science, politics, business and the arts, occasionally interviewing guests on-air. He’s also one of several producers for KPBS’ First Person series, profiling San Diegans in stories told in their own words. Previously, he reported for the San Diego Business Journal, covering the economy, banking, manufacturing and sports, and wire service Law360, covering breaking regulatory and legal news. He was also an associate producer for PBS member station WTTW in Chicago. He graduated from the University of Chicago in 2011 with a degree in Law, Letters and Society, a convoluted way of saying he studied American history.

Tom Jones
Investigative Journalist, NBC San Diego
Tom Jones is an award-winning investigative journalist working with NBC News in San Diego. He produces weekly consumer content for the station’s consumer investigative unit, NBC 7 Responds and also assists with the station’s investigative team, NBC 7 Investigates.  Growing up on California’s Central Coast, Tom has been working in a broadcast newsroom for over 10 years. He loves digging into a good story lead and a fresh dataset to analyze.