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Legislative Committee Update | 2.3.22

The Maine Legislature Judiciary Committee voted Jan. 27, 2022 to table LD 1529, “Resolution, Proposing an Amendment to the Constitution of Maine To Create a Right to Privacy.” The bill was introduced in May, 2021 and proposes changes to Article 1, §1 and §5, and the addition of §25, “Privacy.” The MPA Legislative Committee submitted testimony Jan. 24, 2022 opposing the bill, and maintains its stance after new amendments were since introduced which the committee feels do not address concerns for the future of journalists and information gathering.

The changes to Maine’s constitution would provide a natural right “of privacy” and protections against unreasonable search or access to “electronic data or electronic communications.” Original language provided for freedom from “governmental and private intrusion” which includes “a natural person’s interaction with an Internet, communication or other electronic data service does not diminish the natural person’s reasonable expectation of privacy.”

MPA Legislative Committee member Judy Meyer authored the testimony on behalf of MPA, New England First Amendment Coalition, the New England Newspaper & Press Association, the Maine Association of Broadcasters, the Society of Professional Journalists Maine and SPJ New England. The coalition felt the bill failed to adequately preserve First Amendment rights for news gathering organizations in its efforts to secure a right to privacy for all.

“People deserve privacy,” Meyer wrote, “but there must be a balance between privacy and public access, between shielding personal information and allowing businesses to use that information to serve customers, between privacy and First Amendment freedoms, and between blocking access to all private communications and thoughts – even if a person chooses to make private thoughts public on social media or other forums.”

The testimony suggested addressing governmental intrusion only, striking “private intrusion” for unintended consequences – as other states with similar provisions are experiencing – to organizations and individuals which collect data for the public good.
“If LD 1529 moves forward as written, and goes to referendum and is adopted, the Constitution can’t be overridden through legislation and the damage would be real … We ask that this Committee compare this overly broad language with the work being done in other states to protect individual privacy, and proceed with a more balanced approach, perhaps doing so through legislation that could be amended if or as needed.”
A recent amendment revealed a shorter passage designated for Article 1 §25, a provision the MPA still feels is inadequate for First Amendment protections: “All natural persons have an inherent right to privacy that is free from intrusion, including privacy of a natural person’s personal life, personal communications, private affairs and personal thoughts or inner life.”

The Judiciary Committee did not indicate when LD 1529 would return to its work session agendas.

Joe Charpentier
Boothbay Register

Maine Press Association awards $2,500 in scholarships

Emma H. Smith (L) and Meaghan Bellavance (R)

The Maine Press Association is delighted to announce the recipients of two journalism scholarships totaling $2,500. The recipients of the 2022 scholarships are Emma H. Smith and Meaghan Bellavance. 

Smith, a Bangor native, is currently in her fourth year of study at the University of Maine at Orono, working towards a Bachelor’s degree, double majoring in Communication and Journalism as well as Women’s, Gender and Sexuality studies. While interning at the Fox 22 / ABC 7 broadcast news station in Bangor, she fell in love with the newsroom and was inspired by the quick wit and genuine nature of those around her. Onwards, she wants to focus on her writing, and her dreams include publishing books with historical narratives, as well as working on investigative projects to uncover and write about long-awaited truths. 

Bellavance, is a fifth-year student at the University of Maine at Orono. A native of Danielson, a small town in the quiet corner of Connecticut, she is currently studying to earn a Bachelor’s degree with a double major in Journalism and Anthropology. She is the Culture Editor for Maine Campus, UMaine’s student newspaper of record since 1875. After graduation this coming May, her career goal is to become a multimedia journalist and become fully immersed in the journalism industry. 

The Maine Press Association awards at least one scholarship every year to a junior or senior with financial need who plans to pursue a career in journalism. The scholarships are possible through the generosity of bidders at the Maine Press Association’s annual scholarship auction and the donors who provide the auction items.

To inquire about the 2023 scholarship, contact scholarship committee Chair Sindhu Manjesh at sindhu.manjesh@maine.edu.

The Maine Press Association (MPA), founded in 1864, is one of the oldest professional news organizations in the nation. We strive to promote and foster high ethical standards in journalism and the best interests of the journalists and media organizations that constitute our membership; to encourage best business and editorial practices and a better media environment in Maine; and to protect the principles of freedom of the press and the public’s right to know.

The Portland Press Herald, the Portland Phoenix, and The Camden Herald among MPA winners

CAMDEN, Maine, November 13, 2021 –The Portland Press Herald, the Portland Phoenix, The Camden Herald, and the Maine Sunday Telegram have been honored by the Maine Press Association for General Excellence in print newspapers.

The Portland Press Herald, The Maine Monitor, and the Boothbay Register took top honors for digital General Excellence in the MPA’s Better Newspaper Contest.

The awards were presented Saturday afternoon during the association’s annual awards presentation, this year held virtually due to COVID-19.

Dorothy “Dot” Roderick, one of the first women advertising executives in the newspaper industry; Dieter Bradbury, a force in Maine journalism for more than four decades; and Judy Meyer, executive editor for Sun Journal, Kennebec Journal and Morning Sentinel and a fierce advocate for First Amendment rights, were selected by the MPA’s Hall of Fame Committee as the 2021 inductees. Due to the decision to forego this year’s in-person conference, the formal induction ceremony will be held at next year’s MPA Conference, Oct. 22, in Bar Harbor.

In the General Excellence competition for print newspapers, The Portland Press Herald was judged the best daily in Maine for the third consecutive year while the Maine Sunday Telegram was the weekend Newspaper of the Year for the eleventh time in twelve years.

The contest judges, who hailed from The South Dakota Press Association, wrote of The Portland Press Herald, “Clearly the class of this division. Front page designs are attractive and leave no doubt about the day’s top story. It features a robust editorial page with local editorials and an attractive sports page…. The writing ranges from professional to first-rate.”

“There’s not much getting done on Sundays in Portland for the readers of this newspaper,”  said the judges about the Maine Sunday Telegram. “It’s stuffed with ads and sections that feature stories from staff writers in each one. The sports news pops off the page. Headlines are solid and photos are crisp.”

In the Weekly 1 division, for newspapers with less than 3,000 print circulation, The Camden Herald took the top prize. Judges said, “This is a newsy, well-written newspaper. The front pages are attractive…It has lively opinion pages and a first-rate sports section.” The Weekly 2 winner, the Portland Phoenix, was lauded for its differences. “Unlike many tab-sized newspapers, this one does not overload its front page, opting to take an attractive magazine approach. The writing here is superb.”

The Camden Herald and The Lincoln County News won the Freedom of Information first-place award in the Weekly 1 and Weekly 2 divisions, respectively, while Bangor Daily News took top honors in the Daily/Weekend division.

Samantha Hogan of The Maine Monitor was named the Journalist of the Year and Jane Patriquin of the Portland Press Herald was the Advertising Person of the Year.

Emily Bader, formerly of the Lakes Region Weekly and now of the Sun Journal, won the Bob Drake Young Writer’s Award, and Keith Taylor of MaineToday Media was honored by the MPA as the Unsung Hero of the Year.

A complete list of 2021 award winners will be posted later this week on the MPA’s website.

The Maine Press Association (MPA), founded in 1864, is one of the oldest professional news organizations in the nation. Learn more at www.mainepressassociation.org.

2021 Virtual Awards Presentation | Let’s Celebrate!

While we won’t be meeting in-person for the 2021 MPA Fall Conference, let’s celebrate each other and all 69 categories of Better Newspaper Award winners!

We hope you’ll join us November 13 at 5:00 p.m. for the Virtual Awards Presentation, hosted by esteemed MC Greg Rec, to celebrate all of the winners of this year’s Better Newspaper Contest and unveil the winners of this year’s coveted General Excellence and individual awards including Journalist of the Year, Advertising Person of the Year, Bob Drake Young Writer, and Unsung Hero.

Like last year, your registration fee includes the Awards Presentation PLUS subsequent programming throughout 2022 and we have four presentations lined up and ready to go.

Please join us:                                                                                                              Saturday, November 13                                                                                                    5:00 – 6:30 p.m.                                                                                                                    $25 per person

To Register, Click Here.

Award plaques and certificates and the 2021 Awards Supplement, complete with all contest winners and judges’ comments, will be provided to members in PDF form after the Virtual Awards Presentation.

We will also produce a ½-page ad to celebrate this year’s award winners, including our Hall of Fame inductees, and promote the Scholarship Auction. The ad will be made available to every MPA member for publication, if they so choose.

MPA 2021 Conference & Better Newspaper Contest Update

2021 Virtual Awards Presentation | Let’s Celebrate!

While we won’t be meeting in-person for the 2021 MPA Fall Conference, let’s celebrate each other and all 69 categories of Better Newspaper Award winners!

We hope you’ll join us November 13 at 5:00 p.m. for the Virtual Awards Presentation, hosted by Greg Rec, to celebrate all of the winners of this year’s Better Newspaper Contest and unveil the winners of this year’s coveted General Excellence and individual awards including Journalist of the Year, Advertising Person of the Year, Bob Drake Young Writer, and Unsung Hero.

Like last year, your registration fee includes the Awards Presentation PLUS subsequent programming throughout the year, and we have four presentations lined up and ready to go.

Please join us: Saturday, November 13

5:00 – 6:30 p.m. | $25 per person

To Register, Click Here.

Award plaques and certificates and the 2021 Awards Supplement, complete with all contest winners and judges’ comments, will be provided to members in PDF form after the Virtual Awards Presentation.

We will also produce a ½-page ad to celebrate this year’s award winners, including our Hall of Fame inductees, and promote the Scholarship Auction. The ad will be made available to every MPA member for publication, if they so choose.

MPA Annual Business Meeting will be held Oct. 23 at 9:30 via Zoom. All MPA members are welcome to attend. Click Here to join the meeting. Meeting ID: 893 9663 7684 | Passcode: 898435

The 2021 Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony will be postponed until next year in Bar Harbor, with the formal induction of the 2021 and the 2022 slate. Save the date: 10/22/22.

2021 MPA Conference Programming: The MPA Program Committee will schedule programs planned for the in-person conference into a series of webinars. We will be circulating information about that schedule soon.

 Online Silent Scholarship Auction | Time to Clean out the Gift Drawer

That’s right, we’re searching high and low for items to feature in the 2021 Silent Scholarship Auction. Gift certificates and coupons to places, products and events (sailing excursions, weekends at your camp) make for great donations as do foods and specialty items.

Who would have guessed a dozen Labadie whoopie pies, donated by the generous Mark Mogensen of the Sun Journal, would have encouraged a bidding war last year right up until the last minute? Being the kindred spirits that they are MPA Executive Director Diane Norton and MPA President Lynda Clancy shared the bounty.

Any and all item donations appreciated. Please email Diane Norton, mainepressmail@gmail.com, for a submission form, or send a photo, description of the item and value by Oct. 25.

Then, get ready to bid early and often when the Auction goes live on Oct. 30 (and ends Nov. 14).

All proceeds from the auction fund the MPA Scholarship Fund, which is integral to our mission of encouraging more young journalists to join the profession. Your generous participation in last year’s scholarship auction resulted in the distribution of $4,000 of scholarships to Maine students earlier this year.

 In Memoriam
Each year, MPA honors our colleagues who have died during the previous year. We invite your in memoriam suggestions so that we can honor them at the conference. Please Email Diane at mainepressmail@gmail.com by Monday, Oct 28.

Maine Press Association to induct three into Hall of Fame

Three new members will enter the Maine Press Association Hall of Fame on October 23. Dorothy “Dot” Roderick, Dieter Bradbury and Judy Meyer have been selected by the MPA’s Hall of Fame Committee and will be inducted during the association’s annual Fall Conference.

Dot Roderick was one of the first women advertising executives in the newspaper industry.

Roderick worked 43 years for Gannett, starting in 1937 with the Central Maine Morning Sentinel and then transferring to Portland in 1940 to work for The Portland Press Herald, Evening Express and Sunday Telegram.

She became national ad manager in 1956, working with advertisers and advertising agencies throughout the United States and with the newspapers’ national advertising representative, Landon Associates.

Roderick frequently spoke fondly about her days in a heavily male-dominated industry, jet-setting across the country to meet with execs and clients as well as entertaining the same, along with her husband Arthur, when clients came to Maine.

Dot retired in 1980 from Gannett’s Portland newspapers and died on March 1, 2020, at the age of 101.

Jack Milton/Staff Photographer: Press Herald/Maine Sunday Telegram reporter Dieter Bradbury Friday, August 24, 2007.

Dieter Bradbury has been a force in Maine journalism for more than four decades.

Upon graduating from the University of Southern Maine in 1980, Bradbury was hired part-time for the Portland Press Herald’s afternoon paper, the Evening Express. Two years later, he became a full-time reporter for the Press Herald, covering the night cops beat and later was the environment reporter.

Bradbury then went to the assignment desk, later served a short time as the Press Herald’s business editor and then in 2012 he was promoted to deputy managing editor, overseeing the news desks, directing specialty beats and political reporting, and managing some of the paper’s most important work.

For the past 10 years, Bradbury has directed the State House, political and election coverage and he has shepherded some of the Herald’s top projects during his time as deputy managing editor. Among them: the 2012 series “Deadly Force,” which investigated police shootings; the 2014 series “The Challenge of Our Age,” which examined the issues facing our aging population; and the 2017 series “Lost,” which chronicled the tolls that the opioid epidemic was taking on our state and our people.

Bradbury retired from the Portland Press Herald in September.

Judy Meyer began working for the Sun Journal as a freelancer out of the Norway (Maine) bureau, where she covered local selectmen’s meetings and breaking news in nearby towns.

In 1996, she was hired full-time to run that bureau, and from there she rose swiftly through the ranks of one of the largest daily newspapers in Maine. In 1998, she was made editorial page editor at the newspaper’s headquarters in Lewiston. Five years later, she was named daytime managing editor. In April 2016, she was named the Sun Journal’s executive editor, replacing Rex Rhoades upon his retirement.

Today, Meyer is responsible for overseeing the Sun Journal, the third-largest daily newspaper in Maine, as well as at a half-dozen weekly newspapers spread throughout Sun Media’s western Maine coverage area. She also serves as executive editor of the central Maine dailies: Morning Sentinel and Kennebec Journal.

A fierce advocate for first amendment rights, Meyer was instrumental in the formation of the Maine Freedom of Information Coalition (MFOIC), a group that’s been the leading advocacy organization for improving open meeting and public record laws in Maine.

The MPA Hall of Fame, established in 1998, honors newspaper people with Maine connections who have made outstanding contributions to the profession. Its members are on the MPA website, at http://mainepressassociation.org/hall-of-fame/.

Tickets to the Hall of Fame induction ceremony are available by contacting MPA Executive Director Diane Norton at mainepressmail@gmail.com or 691-0131.

Carolyn Jane Flanagan

We are saddened to report that our former colleague, Carolyn Flanagan, has died. A number of us in the Midcoast were fortunate to have worked with Carolyn over the years, and remember her fondly for her sharp sense of humor, dedication to journalism, and strong work ethic. Thank you, Carolyn!

BARRINGTON, NH – Carolyn Jane Flanagan, 81, native of Rockland, recently of Barrington, NH, passed away peacefully at home on August 20, 2021, after an extended illness.

Born in Rockland, July 31, 1940, she was the fifth of nine children to James and Eileen Spinney Flanagan. She graduated from Rockland High School in 1958. Carolyn was married to Charles Allen, Jr on October 5, 1963; they were married for 27 years.

Carolyn was a well-known community member of Rockland. She worked as a receptionist and then in advertising sales for the Courier Gazette and Camden Herald for many years. She relished her relationships with co-workers and clients throughout her career. Carolyn was passionate about golf and could be found almost every summer day at the Rockland Golf Course getting in her 18 holes with her family and friends. She often stated that playing golf as the sun was setting was as close to heaven as she could get while here on Earth. Carolyn was proud to be a promoter of the next generation of golfers and was actively involved in the junior program at Rockland Golf Course in the 1970’s and 80’s. She coached high school cheerleading in the 1980s as well. Above all, Carolyn was a devoted mother, grandmother, and sister and took great pride in caring for and supporting all her loved ones.

For the full obituary and service information, contact:

Burpee, Carpenter & Hutchins Funeral Home

110 Limerock Street Rockland, ME 04841

email wecare@bchfh.com

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