I had the privilege of spending four enriching days in Detroit with journalists and media makers from around the U.S. for the latest conference on Journalism that Matters. It was at various times intense, exciting, exhausting and enlightening. I am so glad I had the opportunity to see Motor City. I’ve already had an opportunity to talk with someone about my time there. After a comment about how at least she could afford a house in Detroit, I told her to go for it!
The residents of Detroit who I met care passionately about their home and how they are perceived by the rest of the country. I was treated to a driving (of course!) tour by Alicia Buggs, a government employee who spends her days fighting for the rights of the elderly, and strives to become a journalist on her own time. It was important to her to use some of that time to show a few of us what her home really looks like. We enjoyed a great dinner along the Detroit River as the city geared up for its popular air races.
What I take away from Detroit are good memories, new friends and many lessons in approaching community to report their stories and their news. What I left with those I met are many promises. Here’s the list I jotted down on my plane ride home. Forgive the bullet points, Jenny Lee!
- To keep in touch–with colleagues and with JTM’s Google Group
- To mentor another in new or social media
- To “rock SPJ‘s boat”
- To visit Detroit again
- To share my audio and photos
- To attend another JTM conference
- To connect people I know to people I met
- To take and post session notes!
- To pitch the story of Red Ink
- To share my work
- To ask for help
- To join the KIVA group to fund new journalism projects
- To keep in touch with Sonya and her Community News site
- To practice journalism in remembrance of my time in Detroit