Media organizations sign on to sponsor RMA event

April 19, 2014


The Rochester Media Association’s annual awards banquet on May 17 has received an initial round of sponsorship from five leading area media organizations. Network television affiliates WROC Channel 8, WHEC Channel 10, WHAM Channel 13, along with Time Warner Cable News and the Democrat and Chronicle Media Group have agreed to sponsor the event.

As sponsors, these organizations receive a variety of benefits including the right for employees of their organization to purchase tickets at half price. More importantly, they are helping support an event meant to collaboratively celebrate the collective good work of media professionals from around Greater Rochester.

Sponsorships are still available and the RMA is actively soliciting them from other media organizations. To find out how your media organization can become a sponsor, visit our sponsorship information page.

The event will be held at the Rochester Riverside Convention Center on Saturday May 17 beginning with cocktails (cash bar) at 6:30 p.m. and dinner and the awards program at 7:30 p.m. The evening will include recognition of media contributors designated by their employers, as well as presentation of this year’s Impact Awards. Tickets may be purchased online


2014 Impact Award Winners announced

April 8, 2014

The Rochester Media Association is proud to announce its Impact Award winners this year. The Impact Awards honor individuals with a distinguished career in local media who also have made substantial contributions to the community. The awards will be presented at RMA’s third annual banquet on May 17 at the Riverside Convention Center.

RMA members selected the following Impact Award winners:

Gary Craig has been a reporter for Gannett Company since 1990, starting at the Times-Union. His investigative reports now appear in the Democrat and Chronicle. Gary’s wide range of work has exposed a number of issues, and he loves the “unpredictability” of reporting. He recalls the Betty Tyson case, conditions in female prisons, and drugging of foster children. Gary is writing a book about the famous Brinks heist. Gary has received numerous awards, including honors from the National Headliner Awards and Investigative Reporters and Editors.

Jack Palvino had a 40-year career in broadcasting. He was on the air from 1958-1978. In 1978, he and his partner, Albert “Bud” Wertheimer, formed the Lincoln Group and purchased WVOR radio. The group grew to include WHAM, WHTK, WPXY, and WHRR in Rochester; WBUF in Buffalo; and WQKX and WSOM in Youngstown, Ohio. The group was sold in 1997 to American Radio Systems, now CBS. In 2001, he established the Jack Palvino Excellence in Communications Scholarship, which is awarded to two St. John Fisher Media and Communication students each year. He also serves on the Fisher board of trustees. Jack started the Jack Palvino Excellence in Communication Awards in 2011, honoring local communications professionals for their work in public relations, advertising, and broadcast and print journalism. Jack was inducted into the Rochester Music Hall of Fame in 2013.

Randy Gorbman is WXXI’s director of News and Public Affairs. Randy manages the day-to-day operations of WXXI News on radio, television, and online. Randy has over 30 years of broadcast news experience, and was recently news director at WHAM-AM in Rochester. Randy has also been news director, writer, announcer, and producer at radio stations in several cities in New York and Connecticut, as well as working as an editor at the NBC Radio Network. He served as past president of the New York State Associated Press Broadcasters’ Association, and is currently a member of its board of directors. Randy has also taught journalism to local students, serving as adjunct instructor at SUNY Geneseo and Monroe Community College.

Janet Lomax is a news anchor at News10NBC, with more than 30 years experience as a broadcast journalist. Over the years, Janet has covered a variety of stories, from national political conventions and the NYC visit of Pope John Paul II to a number of one-on-one interviews with prominent newsmakers, including America’s First Lady Michelle Obama. In addition to her anchor duties, Janet reports on the arts. She has written and co-produced numerous half-hour specials and is responsible for “Best Seat in the House,” which focuses on the local arts scene. Janet is a member of The Links, Inc. (and a past president of the Rochester chapter), Jack and Jill of America, Inc., Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, the National Association of Black Journalists, and RABJ, the local affiliate. Janet is frequently asked to speak or serve as emcee at events throughout the community.

Ticket Information for the banquet:

  • $50 – RMA Members and their guests
  • $60 – Non-RMA Members

***Half-Price Tickets are available! If your company is a banquet sponsor, you and your guest can purchase half-priced tickets. Ask your supervisor or email to find out if your are a member of a participating organization.

For more information about banquet sponsorship and tickets, visit our 2014 banquet information page.


March 10, 2014


Let’s face it: the media-PR relationship can be tense at times. But media professionals need PR professionals and PR professionals need media professionals. So, how can we all work together better?

Join PRSA and RMA for a panel discussion of media and PR professionals who share stories of successful relationships, pet peeves, tips of the trade, and things they wished more of us knew.

6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Wednesday March 26
St. John Fisher College, 3690 East Ave, Rochester
Wegmans School of Nursing Room 100
(Use campus East Entrance)

Free for RMA & PRSA members & students;
just email rocmediaassoc[at] to secure your spot.
Identify yourself as RMA, PRSA or student (please list school).

$5 all others (register with PayPal)

Space is limited; reservations required by March 24

Presented in collaboration with SJFC Department of Media and Communication

Impact Award voting to begin

March 3, 2014

Voting over the next few weeks will determine who is selected for the Rochester Media Association’s Impact Awards, to be presented at the group’s annual banquet May 17.

Think of them like the Rochester Media Oscars!

Awards will go to three people, one each from print/digital, television and radio, as selected by the association’s members.

If you would like to participate in this selection, the deadline to become a member is Wednesday March 5 at 5 p.m.  Only members with dues paid in full on that date will be eligible to participate in the process.

Important note: membership is annual, so anyone who has joined since mid-March 2013 is eligible, including new members who joined at our member recruitment event on Feb. 27. New members who join before Wednesday also will be eligible. But anyone who joined at the RMA’s first membership drive in February 2013 may need to renew. If you are unsure of your membership status just email us at rocmediaassoc[at] .

New and renewing members can pay for membership securely online with PayPal

After the eligible membership roster is set, nominating ballots will go out via email Friday, March 7, with a return deadline of Friday March 14.

Once nominations have been compiled, a second ballot listing nominees and their bios will be distributed later in March. The awards committee will meet in early April to review the results of that ballot and make final selections.

The Impact Awards are meant to recognize not only career achievement but also acknowledge a commitment to giving back time and talent for community causes.

Last year the association honored Beth Adams of WXXI radio, Rich Funke of WHEC News10NBC television and Jack Garner of the Democrat and Chronicle. The year before, inaugural honors went to Don Alhart, Brother Wease and Carol Ritter.

Coming attractions

Also, be sure to save the following dates for upcoming RMA events:

  • March 26, 6:30 to 8:30 p.m., panel discussion of media and public relations practitioners at St. John Fisher College.
  • May 17, third annual Rochester Media Association Awards Banquet, Rochester Riverside Convention Center. Tickets will be on sale soon; watch this space for details

For any questions about membership or other association activities, just email us at rocmediaassoc[at] .

Mixer, membership drive event set for Feb. 27

October 8, 2013

A membership drive event and mixer will be held 6 p.m. to 8 p.m Thursday Feb. 27 at Matthews East End Grill, 200 East Ave.

As a thank you to past and future members, we’ll have complimentary snacks and your first drink is on us. You don’t have to be a member to stop in, but we’re convinced you will sign up by the time you leave!  Annual dues are just $25.

You can pay by cash or check at this event; if you want to use a credit card look just to the right of this post for information about paying through PayPal.  If you joined when we first initiated paid memberships one year ago, it’s time to re-up!

Why become a member?

  1. Support professional development, networking and social events for Rochester media professionals.
  2. Honor our work. Members nominate and vote on Impact Award winners in the fields of radio, print & digital and television journalism. Impact Awards are given at our annual banquet. In addition, each media outlet honors two employees of their choosing at the banquet.
  3. Free entry to professional development events and discount on banquet tickets.

Any questions about membership, just email us at rocmediaassoc[at] .

Annual Awards Banquet: Saturday May 17, 2014

In response to feedback we heard from those in attendance at last year’s banquet, we have moved it up about a month for 2014. Instead of a mid-June date we have selected May 17, and it again will be held at the Rochester Riverside Convention Center. Save the date, and again stay tuned for more details, including membership voting for the Impact Award honorees.

One Other Save the Date: Professional Development Event March 26

Our next professional development event will take place at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday March 26 at St. John Fisher College, site of our last such program in November. Details will be available at the Feb. 27 mixer and here on the website as panelists are confirmed.

RMA awards dinner honors 23 for their work

June 17, 2013

Three recipients of the annual Impact Awards and 20 representatives of area media organizations were honored at the Rochester Media Association’s annual awards dinner Saturday June 13, 2013.

The Impact Awards, selected by a vote of the RMA membership, were made to:

  • Beth Adams, radio news anchor with WXXI News and former longtime reporter at WHAM 1180 news;
  • Rich Funke, longtime WHEC-TV Channel 10 reporter and anchor, who recently retired after a 40-year career in broadcasting; and
  •  Jack Garner, critic and columnist for the Democrat and Chronicle, who retired from full-time work at the paper in 2007 but continues to contribute as a free-lancer.

In addition, the following received honors for contributions to their media organizations.


  • Bob Lonsberry, WHAM 1180 talk show host, and Scott Brooks, 95.1 The Brew Morning Show producer, Clear Channel Radio.
  • Seth Voorhees, anchor and reporter, and Geoff Redick, reporter, YNN.
  • Julie Sherwood, senior reporter, and Erinn Cain, reporter,  Messenger Post Media.
  • Rebecca Leclair, anchor, and Amanda Ciavarri, reporter, WHEC News10.
  • Alex Crichton, radio host, and Lisa Famiglietti, producer, WXXI.
  • Mike Danger, program director at 98 PXY and 98.9 The Buzz, and Raphael Opida, on-air host WPXY, and Entercom Radio.
  • Doug Emblidge, anchor, and Alexis Arnold, reporter/anchor, 13WHAM news.
  • Laurylann Romeo-Costanzo, development director, and Lynda Wildman, on-air host, WGMC Jazz 90.1 radio.
  • Maureen McGuire, anchor, and Stacy Pensgen, meterologist, WROC News8.
  • James Lawrence, editorial page editor, and Tiffany Lankes, education reporter Democrat and Chronicle Media Group.

More than 100 members of the honorees’ organizations along with family and friends attended the awards dinner at the at the Rochester Riverside Convention Center. WHAM-TV anchor Don Alhart was the master of ceremonies.

For reactions of many of the honorees and other participants see this compilation of Twitter coverage from the event.





Second set of Impact Award honorees selected

May 20, 2013

The Rochester Media Association has named the second set of honorees for its Impact Awards, which are meant to honor individuals with a distinguished career in local media who also have made substantial contributions to the community. The awards will be presented at the Association’s second annual  banquet on June 15.

The winners are:

Rich Funke, longtime WHEC-TV Channel 10 reporter and anchor, who recently retired after a 40-year career in broadcasting. He has won numerous state and local awards for his work and also has been involved in fund-raising and other support for Camp Good Days and Special Times, Golisano Children’s Hospital and other community groups.

Jack Garner, critic and columnist for the Democrat and Chronicle, who retired from full-time work at the paper in 2007 but continues to contribute as a free-lancer. He serves on the boards of BOA Editions, poetry publishers, and Writers & Books,  and has been honored by the George Eastman House for his contributions to the world of film.

Beth Adams, radio news anchor with WXXI News and former longtime reporter at WHAM 1180 news. In addition to her long radio career Adams is active in the Rochester community, having volunteered for organizations including the Humane Society at Lollypop Farm, the Heart of Gold Children’s Foundation, the Rochester Press Radio Club Children’s Charities, and the Rochester Broadway Theater League Education Committee.

This year’s honorees follow the inaugural class honored last year, which consisted of Don Alhart, longtime WHAM-TV Channel 13 anchor; Carol Ritter Wright, retired reporter and columnist for the Democrat and Chronicle; and Brother Wease, radio personality with 95.1.

The Impact Award winners, who were selected by a vote of the RMA membership, will be honored at the dinner along with organizational contributors. Leading Rochester area media organizations have been asked to designate two honorees, one a Young Media Professional contributor (age 30 and younger) and one an Established Media Professional (over 30). The purpose of the event is to collectively and collaboratively celebrate outstanding work of media professionals across the Rochester community.

The event will take place at the Rochester Riverside Convention Center on Saturday June 15, beginning with a cocktail hour (cash bar) at 6:30 p.m., with dinner at 7:30 p.m. followed by the program. Don Alhart will be master of ceremonies.

Tickets cost $45 for members and $55 for non-members. See box to the right of this entry for additional information and links to order tickets online.


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