PRNDI Conference Schedule

May 9, 2016

Wednesday, June 22, 2016 – Pre-Conference Workshops:


8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. - PRNDI’s News Manager Training and Certification – Day One - Maryland A -  Today's newsroom leaders face BIG challenges: they set editorial strategy and ethical standards for their organizations; they plan coverage and assign, track, and edit stories; they manage people and personalities; and, they're helping navigate a digital future for public media journalism.


Join PRNDI's News Manager Training and Certification Workshop for a dynamic, interactive experience that will help you develop practical skills for effective news leadership. Public media news veterans Michael Marcotte and Judith Smelser will be your guides, helping you with everything from establishing your newsroom vision to running an effective news meeting; from setting the daily agenda to to navigating ethical minefields; from managing people (maybe people who used to be your peers) to editing strong stories -- all while balancing opportunities for collaboration, innovation and audience engagement.


The workshop is two-days (held prior to the start of the PRNDI conference) and yields a customized action plan. The workshop is followed by “100-day follow-up” meeting online. Participants who successfully carry out all requirements of the training receive an official PRNDI Certificate of Completion.


8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. - Investigative Journalism and Data Training - Maryland B - How do you know when a story you’re covering rises to the level of an investigative story? Spend two days with journalists from NPR’s Investigations Unit and CIR’s Reveal to learn how investigations come together, the tools you need to make them happen and the challenges you may run into. The workshop includes hands-on sessions about data, FOIA, storytelling and collaborations. There will also be time to get feedback on your stories and ideas.


Workshop Trainers:

Danny Zwerdling, Correspondent, NPR Investigations Unit

Robert Benincasa, Producer, NPR Investigations Unit

Caitlin Dickerson, Reporter, NPR Investigations Unit

Nicole Beemsterboer, Senior Producer, NPR Investigations Unit  

Howard Berkes, Correspondent, NPR Investigations Unit

Susanne Reber, Executive Editor, Reveal

Kevin Sullivan, Executive Producer, Reveal

Patrick Madden, Reporter, WAMU


8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. - Editor Training - Westminster Room - Editing starts with the idea, before the first word of a story is written. That’s how some of the best editors in public media will start this one-day session. NPR’s Bruce Auster, Inside Energy’s Alisa Barba and WFAE’s Greg Collard will take you through the process step-by-step. They’ll look at shaping the idea, the mechanics of a good edit, the editor’s role in choosing tape, planning news coverage and multi-media reporting. There will be a critique and participants will walk away with at least five things that will change the way they edit. Participants should bring a recently edited piece for critique.


Thursday, June 23,  2016 – Pre-Conference Workshops


8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. - PRNDI’s News Manager Training and Certification – Day Two - Maryland A


8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. - Investigative Reporting and Data Training with NPR’s IR Team – Day Two - Maryland B


8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. - Making Appointment Radio: Local Talk Shows  - Westminster Room - During this one-day training, we’ll dig deep into what it takes to create and produce a compelling local talk show. We’ll cover innovative ways to find ideas for shows and segments, including researching/developing sources, pre-interviewing, pitching, scripting and presenting. The emphasis is production practices with a goal to make your process from pitch to air sustainable and successful. We’ll also consider creative solutions to local talk shows most vexing production and staffing questions. The training will be led by three experienced public radio pros, Susan Davis, Better Broadcasts; Sylvia Gross, KCUR; and Kerry Donahue, Columbia Graduate School of Journalism.


8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. - Keeping the Story on Track - OFFSITE- AT ST. LOUIS PUBLIC RADIO - Strategies to bring a story from breaking news to enterprise: how to prepare for urgent and disaster reporting; how to execute calm, effective, multi-platform coverage in the heat of the moment; and how to develop next-day and next-week enterprise stories that serve our evolving audiences. (note:  This pre-conference training will be held at St. Louis Public Radio – transportation to be provided)

7 p.m. – Opening Reception with BBC and APM - Zodiac Room - BBC World Service and APM are pleased to sponsor the 2016 PRNDI conference opening reception. Join us for a cocktail, and network a bit with your public media colleagues.


Friday, June 24, 2016

7:00 a.m. - Registration Opens in the Hotel Lobby


7:30 a.m. - 8:30 - Breakfast & Ideas Swap - Zodiac Room – In this PRNDI favorite, we give you a time to network and bounce ideas off of colleagues who face similar challenges to the ones you face.  Join us for a great chance to find answers to those questions that have been plaguing you.


8:30 – 8:45 a.m. – Break


8:45 - 10:15 a.m. – Opening Remarks & Main Session – Covering race in your community - Starlight Room - It’s one of the nation’s most volatile issues.   How do you tell stories about race and ethnicity in a meaningful, authentic way that’s true to our mission of public service?  We’ll identify some of the best strategies in the system to help sharpen your coverage.  Our panelist will be Kameel Stanley, Reporter and Producer with St. Louis Public Radio; Tim Lloyd, Education Reporter at St. Louis Public Radio; Shereen Miraji, Code Switch Reporter for NPR; Judy Valente, Reporter with WGLT Radio.  The panel will be moderated by Keith Woods, Vice President, Diversity in News and Operations at NPR.  

10:15 – 10:30 - Break & Visit with Vendors - Conference Center - Lower Level

10:30 – 11:45– Breakouts

·         NPR/Member Station Collaborations - Maryland A - Join Bruce Auster, NPR’s senior editor for collaborative coverage, as he walks you through the latest stories cultivated by this growing and prosperous relationship between NPR and member station newsrooms.  Collaboration partners, Carrie Feibel (Houston Public Media), Patricia Murphy (KUOW, Seattle) and Ben Adler (Capital Public Radio, Sacramento) as they discuss their work with the health care, military and political reporting teams. Also learn how NPR hopes to create new ways to collaborate with stations.

·         Active Shooter - Maryland B – Unfortunately, the active shooter story is one more newsrooms of all sizes must report.  It can happen at any time. Active shooters bring a special level of tension and uncommon issues you may have only minutes or seconds to solve. Getting reliable information into all of your distribution channels is a delicate task.  NPR Newscast producer John Stempin will lead a unique role playing game that will allow all attendees to engage in mock decision making during an active shooter scenario and puzzle out best practices.

·         NPR Digital Services Presents: Core Publisher showcase: can-do essentials for newsrooms - Westminster -- At NPR Digital Services, we are passionate about helping stations develop a can-do attitude when using Core Publisher. To provide stations the means to create engaging content experiences that reach audience goals rather than feeling the limitations any CMS offers. Join Janeen Williamson, Senior Support Manager for Content Management and Distribution, as she walks through what features and tips web site producers can use to maximize Core Publisher’s ability to support your station’s needs. Walk through setting up and managing featured series, niche verticals, stories with embeds, and more. Review the ins and outs of content distribution using the integrated features to push and pull content from NPR’s story API and the PMP. Plus, explore the flexibility of using blocks on the homepage to promote and feature content that looks beautiful across devices.

11:45 - 12:00 - Break & Visit with Vendors - Conference Center - Lower Level

12:00 – 1:30 – PODCASTING The MACRO Version Lunch - Zodiac Room - The past year has seen more and more stations stepping into the podcast game. They’re creating imaginative, digital-first projects for earbuds everywhere. Adam Ragusea of Current’s The Pub podcast moderates a big picture discussion about podcasting in the public radio realm, featuring podcasters and pub media experts boldly going beyond the airwaves. Our panelists: Kelly McEvers, host of All Things Considered and the Embedded podcast; Kameel Stanley, one of the producer of St. Louis Public Radio’s We Live Here podcast, covering race, class, power, and poverty in the St. Louis Region; Andrew Leland, host of KCRW and McSweeney’s The Organist radio show and podcast.

1:30 - 1:45 - Break & Visit with Vendors - Conference Center - Lower Level

1:45 – 3:00 - Breakouts

·       Let’s Start a Podcast! Bring Your Newsroom’s Idea to Life - Maryland A – Didn’t get enough about podcasting at lunch? Have a new pitch for a podcast for your station? Well, how about we break this down. We go deep into the weeds on digital-first audio and multimedia projects that work for stations of all sizes. Hear real-world lessons from creating, launching and sustaining successful podcasts from Tim Lloyd of We Live Here at St. Louis Public Media, Heather Brandon from The Radius Project at WNPR and Ashton Marra, Assistant News Director at podcasting powerhouse West Virginia Public Broadcasting.

·         Tighten It Up - Westminster - NPR’s word wizard Korva Coleman on how to write sharp, tight copy.

·         Sticking with the Story: The Water Scandal in Flint - Maryland B - Join Vince Duffy and Rebecca Williams from Michigan Radio as they break down the station’s nationally recognized coverage of lead contaminated water in Flint, Michigan. They’ll talk about the challenges of covering and sticking with a fast moving explosive story.   NPR Midwest Bureau Chief Ken Barcus will also join the conversation and talk about Vince, Rebecca and the rest of the team at Michigan Radio contributed to NPR’s coverage of the story.


3:00 – 3:15 – Break & Visit with Vendors - Conference Center - Lower Level


3:15 – 4:30 – Main Session – Real Community Engagement - Starlight Room - Everyone agrees that community engagement is a critical piece of our future in a rapidly-changing media environment.   Learn how some stations are adopting a listening model to redefine their place in their own communities.  


5:00 – The Pub from downtown – Join Adam Ragusea as he does his weekly podcast (location to be determined).


6:00 p.m. - 11:00 p.m. – Everybody on the bus!!!  We’re off for a great night of fun and networking at St. Louis’ City Museum – where imagination (and PRNDI conference attendees) runs wild. We’ll have buses shuttling from the Chase Park Plaza beginning at 5:45 p.m. - the buses will run back and forth all evening, so don’t worry if you miss one - another one is on the way.  The last bus will leave City Museum at 10:45 p.m.  WEAR COMFORTABLE SHOES


Saturday, June 25, 2016


8:00 a.m. – 8:30 – Breakfast with NPR - Zodiac Room - NPR laid out some big commitments for collaborative news coverage at last year’s PRNDI conference. Grab some grub and join us as we check back in with network leaders on their key initiatives and relationship with stations. We’ll hear from Executive Editor of NPR News Edith Chapin and NPR’s Senior Vice President of News and Editorial Director Michael Oreskes.


8:30 a.m. – 9:45 a.m. – Diversity in the newsroom - Starlight Room - Public radio is often criticized for its lack of diversity.  As we continue to reach the goal of “sounding like America”, what are newsrooms doing or need to do to attract and hire more journalists of color. Moderated by Andrew Ramsammy, Director, Content Projects & Initiatives at PRI Public Radio International.  Our panelists will be Kris-Vera Philips, Senior Producer at KPBS San Diego; Karen Henderson, Morning Edition Host at WRKF in Baton Rouge, Louisiana; Mark Simpson, Managing Editor at Ideastream Ohio; Tim Eby, General Manager at St. Louis Public Radio; Doug Mitchell, Founder and Project Director for NPR’s Next Generation Radio.


9:45 – 10:00 – Break & Visit with Vendors - Conference Center - Lower Level


10:00 – 11:15 – Breakouts

·         NPR’s CLOCKS What Have We Learned So Far - Westminster - Stations have since adapted to the new NPR News program clocks. So, what are stations doing with the new avail times, shorter newscasts etc? We’ll get the lowdown from experts and distill some findings from the newly rebooted Morning Edition Grad School (MEGS) program. Panelists from shops large and small talk about their experience with the program and how they are producing Morning Edition. Panelists include Brendan Banazak, Terry Gildea (KUER), Katy Anderson (WBOI) and Maria Carter (KCUR).  


·         The Future of Public Radio - Maryland A – Join us for a discussion on best practices for training the next generation of professionals in our industry.  Our esteemed panelists will share their methods for providing students with the skills necessary to produce quality journalism.  We’ll hear from Ryan Famuliner, News Director of KBIA, which has trained hundreds of journalism students in their newsroom; Alicia Zuckerman, Editorial Director of WLRN, which has a proven track record of working with aspiring journalists and producing award-winning student work; Forrest Smith, Interim Director of the Innovation News Center at the University of Florida, which hopes to make itself a model for existing and emerging newsrooms across the country; and George Bodarky, News Director of WFUV, whose award-winning newsroom staff is primarily made up of undergraduates at Fordham University.  This session is moderated by Kerry Donahue, Director of the Radio Program at Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism.


·         Social Storytelling: How to Leverage New, Shiny Social platforms with a small staff and a tight budget - Maryland B - From Facebook Live to Snapchat, to that new tool everyone will be talking about in July (but doesn’t even exist yet), the social media landscape can be overwhelming. This session is a hands-on crash course in some of the best new social media tools for storytelling, plus tips on how to best use these in your newsroom. Our guides are Kelly Moffitt, online producer at St. Louis Public Media; Adam Raguesa, host of Current’s The Pub podcast and journalism professor at Mercer University; and Lori Todd, social media editor at NPR. Bring your smartphone preloaded with all the social media apps you’d like to test drive!


11:15 – 11:30 – Break & Visit with Vendors - Conference Center - Lower Level


11:30 a.m. –  12:45 p.m. – Elections Lunch - Zodiac Room – It’s a presidential campaign like no other, and it’s keeping political reporters busy. A discussion with NPR Senior Editor and Correspondent Ron Elving and the BBC’s North American reporter covering politics, Anthony Zurcher, about the candidates, the media’s role in shaping the campaign, the effect down ticket, and how it’s playing out across the pond.


12:45 – 2:30 - PRNDI Business Meeting – Starlight Room - Lots to talk about and your voice needs to be heard.  Join us for elections, a name-change discussion and more.


2:30 – 2:45 – Break & Visit with Vendors - Conference Center - Lower Level


2:45 – 4:00 – Breakouts


·         Let’s Do The Numbers: Making Metrics Meaningful - Westminster --Sure, you know how many clicks your story got, but now what? Our panel explains how to draw the most useful meaning from web and NPR One metrics, how to use these numbers to make thoughtful decisions in your newsroom, and takes your questions. We’ll hear from Sean Bowditch, WNYC’s Executive Editor for News;  Tamar Charney, Local Editorial Lead for NPR One; and Madalyn Painter Talla, St. Louis Public Radio’s Digital Media Manager.

·         PRI Presents: Finding Women's Voices in Media - Maryland A - Women make up 50% of the world's population, but, according to research, they are seen and heard only 24% of the time in global news media today. So, where do we find the other half of women? Find out what public media is doing to ensure that women are fully represented in our content and in our leadership. Join Kathy Merritt, VP of Content Strategy and Development at Public Radio International, for a discussion of ideas and efforts underway to bring awareness and action to this issue. Kathy’s guests include Joyce MacDonald, VP of Journalism at CPB; Kerry Donahue, Director of the Radio Program at Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism; Keith Woods, Vice President for Diversity in News and Operations at NPR News.


·         Mice That Roar - Maryland B –You may work in a small shop with limited resources, but it doesn’t mean you can’t create high-quality, compelling content.  In “Mice That Roar”, representatives from some of the system’s best small-to-medium sized newsrooms give you tips for managing time, personnel and resources so that you can produce material that holds up to anything the Big Shops can do.


6:30 – Cocktails - Zodiac


7:00 – PRNDI Annual Awards Banquet - Zodiac