Over the weekend, I had the honor and pleasure to officiate at the swearing-in ceremony of the AP’s Mark Hamrick as the 104th president of the National Press Club. It was a festive evening, with the likes of such journalism luminaries as Helen Thomas and investigative reporter Bill Kurtis in attendance.
Although the “swearing in ceremony” was tongue-in-cheek, I did want to use the opportunity to send a message of support to the journalism community. This is what I said:
Like the automobile industry, the construction industry, and even financial services, the journalism industry — the news business — has gone through some anxiety in the past couple of years.
The bottom line: it’s changing.
How we get our news, how you report news, and what is even considered news, is different than what it was just a few years ago.
But here’s what can’t change: your commitment to excellence, your commitment not only to getting it first, but getting it RIGHT first, and your commitment to keeping decision-makers accountable.
The people who you cover — and that includes me — may not always like what you report, and we won’t always agree with what you report, but know this: we will always celebrate, respect, and defend your right to do it.