Feature, International

UVI_Association of Black Journalists Attend NABJ conference in Alabama

(STX, September 15, 2023.) Through rain and sleet, and in this instance, sweltering heat, journalists will pursue the truth. Two UVI students, proved this theory correct when they attended the annual conference of the National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ) in Birmingham, Alabama, August 3-6th. Michael Bell and Jackeima Flemming traveled more than 3415 miles to represent the first and only NABJ student affiliate in the Caribbean.

Bell, 2023 spring graduate and former UVIABJ president said, “Attending the NABJ Nationals conference is a great opportunity to learn and grow in the media industry, gain exposure to new ideas and technologies, and receive valuable advice from industry leaders. My time at the conference leaves me feeling inspired and excited to apply my newfound knowledge to both my personal and professional life. Additionally, Nationals allows me to represent the USVI and our proud HBCU, further adding to the enriching experience.”

More than 4,000 practicing broadcast/print journalists, industry executives, students and scholars attended this year’s event. Key attendees included David Roberts, Symone Sanders, and Errol Barnett.

David Roberts is Head of NBA and Studio Production at ESPN, leading ESPN’s NBA and WNBA production. Roberts oversees production for all regular-season and playoff games, punctuated by the NBA and WNBA Finals, as well as studio content including NBA Countdown and NBA Today. He also leads production for First Take, the 6 p.m. ET edition of SportsCenter, Get Up, PTI, Around The Horn, This Just In, ESPN Audio content, and ESPN digital shows. In 2020, he was named to the Cablefax Diversity List, recognizing the most influential diverse executives in the industry. 

Symone Sanders-Townsend, author, seasoned democratic strategist and host of “SYMONE” on MSNBC and MSNBC on Peacock. She rose to prominence in 2016 as the national press secretary for U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders’s then-presidential campaign. After serving as senior advisor for President Joe Biden’s 2020 presidential campaign, she went on to serve as a senior member of the Biden-Harris administration serving as deputy assistant to the President and senior advisor and chief spokesperson to Vice President Kamala Harris.

She became the youngest presidential press secretary on record and was named to Rolling Stone magazine’s list of 16 young Americans shaping the 2016 election. At just 29, Sanders-Townsend published her first book, “No, You Shut Up: Speaking Truth to Power and Reclaiming America.”

Errol Barnett is an award-winning CBS News Streaming Network anchor and national correspondent based at the network’s headquarters in New York City. He holds a distinct perspective on global events through a reporting career spanning more than two decades and five continents. Barnett appears regularly across all CBS News programs and platforms and has anchored several CBS special reports.




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  1. this is cool! this is a wonderful event.

  2. Hunter says:

    This is so cool! Inspiring!!

  3. Sydney T. says:

    I like that we had people from our school present, way to represent!

  4. So great! Kudos to UVI for giving such opportunities.

  5. This seems like an amazing event. I love young black journalist have a safe place where they can connect and share experience with fellow black journalist.

  6. Angelique says:

    Wow! I love that UVI has given students interested in journalism and opportunity to have experiences and opportunities such as this.

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