The Broadsheet

New Mexico Press Women
January 2006 Vol. 29 No. 1

Get ready, get set…

Jan. 15 is the new and improved deadline for the NMPW Communication Contest and allows you to enter work for all of calendar 2005. You should by now have contest rules in both paper and electronic form. Kudos to designer Christina McIntosh for the handsome layout and to President Chris Burroughs for helping prepare and distribute the brochure.

Contest Czar Connie Gotsch has a few words of advice:

  • Remember the rules are varied and complicated, so read carefully the general rules about deadlines, the general rules for your category of classes, and the specific rules for your class. Follow them to the letter.
  • If you are asked to provide a written summary or explanation of your project, read the requirements carefully and follow them. You might also defend your choice of subject. Some judges might not understand the importance of a topic to your community. Make clear why it is important.
  • Put the entry into an envelope separate from the envelope in which you mail the entries to me. Put your name and your category in the upper right corner.
  • When you mail your entry, make sure you include your entry form, entry fee, and all relevant materials for your entry.

"I'll double check everything to make sure everything's in shape," she says. "If you double check, too, everybody's job will be easier."

Non-fiction authors, start your engines

Our new Zia chair, Bonnie Gordon, advises us that Jan. 30 is the deadline for entries in the NMPW Zia Award competition for books.

To avoid mixing apples and oranges, this contest category rotates among fiction, nonfiction and children's literature, and this year's contest is for nonfiction books published in 2003, 2004 or 2005. The Zia Award, considered a prestigious accomplishment in writing circles, celebrates an outstanding New Mexico woman author. Each year NMPW presents the award at its annual conference.

You can nominate an outstanding book, or authors may enter their own work. There is no entry fee. Entries must be received no later than Jan. 30. Send the book along with the author's name, address, and phone number to:
Bonnie Gordon
106 Fort Union
Los Alamos, NM 87544
Questions? Contact Bonnie at bonnie@la.unm.edu or 505-412-2233.


The annual meeting is scheduled for April 21 and 22 at the Best Western Hilltop House in Los Alamos. Carol Clark is convention chair. Carol and Chris are working on a Secret Mystery Guest. Stay tuned. The event will also include a guided tour of the Bradbury Science Museum, a guided excursion at Bandelier National Monument or the Valle Caldera National Preserve.

NMPW has opportunities for you to get involved with the group. We need a co-chair for the Scholarship Committee. Laurie Mellas Ramirez, who has shouldered both the silent auction and scholarship selection for the past several years has stepped down from the silent auction this year. Contact President Chris Burroughs if you'd like to run the silent auction.

We have a slate of officers for 2006, who will be officially elected at the April conference: Emily Drabanski, president; Carol Clark, vice president; Sandy Schauer, treasurer; Susanne Burkes, vice president. Connie Gotsch has agreed to continue as communications contest chair. On the board, Brandie Erisman will continue as high school contest chair, and Christina McIntosh will be public relations chair.

Each chapter is invited to nominate a member to be NMPW Communicator of Achievement, Press Women's highest award. The winner then competes nationally.

Ree Sheck, this year's NMPW and NFPW COA, writes: I would like to thank all of New Mexico Press Women for the honor of representing them as the New Mexico Communicator of Achievement. I was glad I could come back from Costa Rica to attend the NFPW conference in Seattle. I was astonished to receive the national COA award and honored to stand among past COA recipients."

Brandie Erisman is working with Susan Walton on the NMPW High School Contest. Susan recently mailed the call for entries. Brandie will arrange for judging and sending out award certificates.

New member: A big welcome to Kathryn Holzka, of Taos, who is a freelance writer and stringer for the Albuquerque Journal North.

NFPW Conference Is in Our Neighborhood

If you haven't yet made it to a national Press Women convention because of cost and distance, here's your big chance. The 2006 conference is in Colorado.

"Rendezvous in the Rockies" is set for Sept. 7-9 in Denver. The Colorado Press Women conference committee is hard at work preparing a great meeting. Jeannette Wall, MSNBC.com reporter, is keynote speaker. Her memoir, "The Glass Castle," was a New York Times bestseller and is being made into a movie by Paramount. Other speakers include T. R. Reid and Tad Bartimus. Reid is a longtime correspondent for the Washington Post and former chief of its Tokyo and London bureaus, as well as a commentator for National Public Radio. Tad Bartimus is a syndicated columnist for United Feature syndicate.

Above and Beyond

NMPW does all those things a professional organization is supposed to do - provide continuing education, conferences and networking opportunities.

But it does a lot more. After her recent divorce, a Las Cruces member found herself without the necessities of a new household. Las Cruces Chapter members rallied to provide kitchenware and spices.

"We're not just a network - we're friends." Wrote the recipient: "I was very moved by your kind gesture; I'll never forget your thoughtfulness."

Chapter News

Albuquerque Press Women's program for Jan. 9 will be "Media and Crime Coverage." Speakers are Trish Hoffman, public information officer for the Albuquerque Police Department, and Stuart Dyson, veteran news reporter with KOB-TV. Hoffman is founder of "Women Against Crime," a program that teaches safety and awareness.

APW President Diana Sandoval reminds members that it's time to renew your APW membership. December's meeting celebrated member authors with a book signing and talk by the Albuquerque Journal's David Steinberg. Participating authors included Sherry Robinson, Gail Rubin, Pari Noskin Taichert, Raquel Troyce and Sharon Niederman.

In November APW members heard about use of anonymous sources and shield laws from Albuquerque attorney Jim Dines; Bob Johnson, executive director of the Foundation for Open Government; and Kate Nelson, Albuquerque Tribune managing editor.

Northern New Mexico Press Women met at the Café Paris in December and heard from Ree Sheck, the NFPW Communicator of Achievement.

Las Cruces Chapter President Jeanne Resendez arranged for the annual holiday luncheon to be held at the home of Sabette Pitcaithley. November's meeting featured member Sunny Conley, a food writer, radio and TV personality, and chile specialist extraordinaire. And in October the group tapped member Rita Popp to talk about "Power Writing."

In Memoriam

Former member Frankie McCarty passed away on in October. She was 77.

Frankie was an education reporter for years at the Albuquerque Journal and became managing editor in 1976, one of the first female MEs in the country. She got her start at the Raton Range. When she retired in 1994, she ended a 40-year career in newspapers.

Frankie was NMPW's first Woman of Achievement in 1961. In 1987 she received the Dan Burrows Award from the New Mexico Society of Professional Journalists for her contribution to journalism in the state and the 1989 Governor's Award for Outstanding New Mexico Women.

People News

The Unsinkable Linda Harris writes that she is beginning the second phase of chemotherapy for breast cancer.

Linda writes: "It also marks the end of three months of what I consider a darned successful course. I am one of the lucky ones whose side effects, while no picnic, were manageable. Thanks to New Mexico's wonderful weather, I walked in the neighborhood every day…I've kept my fighting weight, which I guess is a good thing. I have 2 ½ wigs and a dozen or so hats, but I still miss my hair. Soon I'll miss my eyebrows, too. I've had great support from friends and family."

Linda says she's reading poetry, watching movies, keeping up with friends and family and has made some modest day trips.

"So wish me luck on this next round of weekly treatments, which should be finished the very last day in February. I have a wonderful doctor and great medical facilities, so I'll give it my best try during this segment also. In the meantime, kind friends, I'll be thinking of you, and especially my friends who are going through a similar trial."

Sunstone Press recently released the revised edition of Anne Hillerman's The Children's Guide to Santa Fe.

Ree Sheck updated us on her activities: "My contract with the Tropical Agricultural Research and Higher Education Center (CATIE) was extended for 2006, so I return to Turrialba, Costa Rica, about Jan. 12 to begin a challenging year that will make use of all my professional skills: writing, editing, fundraising, natural history tourism development, and developing media relationships. If any NMPW members would like to visit Costa Rica and write about CATIE projects, just let me know and I will set it up and throw in a bed at my house to boot. Check out the Web site: www.catie.ac.cr.

"I am thrilled to report that the library and distance-learning center being built in La Colonia de Guayabo in Costa Rica is on track and construction should begin in a few months. The center is about an hour's bus ride from where I live and work in Turrialba, so it is a gift to be so near and work with the community to complete the project. The community library will serve several thousand rural people, bringing books and Internet access (so far no one in the area has Internet). Guayabo has only a primary school, so the computer workstations and Internet access will allow young people who can't go on to high school to get their degrees and even receive university courses. We plan a full range of adult education programs as well, including English classes. The villages it will serve are depressed economically, so activities will include opportunities to develop alternative economic activities to increase family incomes.

"Several members have asked me how they can contribute to the project, so here is the mailing address for contributions:
Curt Thomas Sheck Foundation
P.O Box 519
Fairacres, NM 88033.
The foundation, established in memory of my son, who died in 1984, is a 501 (c)(3) public charity, so contributions are tax-exempt to the full extent of the law. Anyone who would like more information may contact me at reesheck@att.net."

APW vice president Dan Mayfield was a cover boy recently for Albuquerque, The Magazine, along with several other attractive singles being featured. State President Chris Burroughs was also profiled in a recent issue (in her professional capacity).

At a recent APW meeting, several former students of Carol Kreis, attending with Pat Graff, asked her to become their English teacher because their teacher was moving to Alaska. So Carol will return to teaching in January.

Connie Gotsch will be reviewing books for Apollo's Lyre, an award-winning e-zine. Connie will discuss books by authors writing about the Southwest.

D'Lyn Ford has left NMSU to take a post at ENMU.

Former member Billie Blair was inducted into the New Mexico Press Association Hall of Fame. Formerly editor of the Taos News and publisher of the Santa Fe New Mexican, Billie is now head of the Santa Fe Community Foundation.

Pari Noskin Taichert is blasting away at The Socorro Blast, her third mystery. She recently wrote that she was well along on a rough draft. "By 'rough' I mean about the consistency of hundreds of pointy boulders, but then I'll have the joy of editing. I adore that part of the process and can't wait to get to it," she writes. "I'm also going to start the new series before year's end."

Cathy Robbins says she still returns to Albuquerque about every other month. And contrary to our previous report, she's not a former member but a current member.

Yvonne Lanelli has become a regular contributor to Wilderness Medical Society magazine and Platinum, a senior lifestyle quarterly for southeastern New Mexico. "For the former, I send semi-medical dispatches from my world travels (I'm the only non-MD or PhD on the masthead) and for the latter, traveling opportunities for the Golden Set," she writes. "Lest you imagine rocking chair appeal, think again. My last article was on active seniors hiking and mountain biking in the Lincoln National Forest! Wait till you see my article on Senior Scuba Diving."

Congratulations to Barb Awalt and Paul Rhetts for a second successful season with New Mexico Books & More, a book store in Cottonwood Mall. The store, which featured books by more than 225 authors, benefited from good publicity in the Albuquerque Journal and The Alibi. During its six-week run, the store offered 110 book signings, which must be some kind of record.

Scott Alley has become a matchmaker, of sorts. Scott noticed that local book clubs enjoyed having local authors, and the authors were pleased to speak to these groups. So Scott is organizing an online clearinghouse. If you're interested, contact Scott at alley0412@msn.com. Scott is a member of the Ravioli Mystery Book Club and Downtown Neighborhood Ladies Book Club.

Former NMPW President Melanie Majors has been promoted to vice president at Hirst Córdova Public Relations. Melanie joined the company in 2004 as a senior associate.

Sherry Robinson is editor for the Albuquerque Tricentennial, on contract with the City of Albuquerque and has greatly enjoyed being a paid historian. The New Mexico Humanities Council recently renewed her participation as a speaker. She has given Apache talks around the state for six years. And she completed her first year as proprietor of New Mexico News Services, adding two new subscribers during the year.

New Mexico Press Women
Board of Directors

Chris Burroughs
H (505) 822-9852
W (505) 844-0645
E-mail Chris

Emily Drabanski
Vice President
H (505) 438-0347
W (505) 827-6392
E-mail Emily

Susanne Burks
(505) 884-4812
E-mail Susanne

Sandy Schauer
(505) 865-4932
E-mail Sandy

Connie Gotsch
Communications Contest
H (505) 326-4969
W (505) 566-3377
E-mail Connie

Brandie Erisman
High School contest:
E-mail Brandie

Diana Sandoval
Albuquerque Chapter
H (505) 898-8492
W (505) 841-6052
E-mail Diana

Denise Tessier
H (505) 281-5513
W (505) 823-3864
E-mail Denise
E-mail Denise

Sherry Robinson
Newsletter Editor
(505) 343-0852
E-mail Sherry

Kathryn Cordova
Communicator of Achievement
Cell (505) 770-4246
(505) 737-3707
E-mail Kathryn

Laurie Mellas-Ramirez
Scholarship Chair
H (505) 271-3563
W (505) 277-5915
E-mail Laurie

Christina McIntosh
PR Chair
(505) 388-3021
cell 379-8425
E-mail Christina

Jeanne Resendez
Las Cruces Chapter

Carol Clark
Northern New Mexico Chapter

Cell (505) 490-0938
W (505) 662-4185, ext. 25
E-mail Carol