Few moments in my journalism career have stood out more than the magazine-length feature I convinced my editors to publish on A-1 of The Record in northern New Jersey. The anniversary story was about Teaneck, N.J., having become the first city in the nation to voluntarily desegregate its public schools without a court order nearly 50 years earlier.
As the Chips Quinn Scholars program celebrates its 25th anniversary, I’m reminded of the spirit behind Teaneck’s effort to make its classrooms reflect its diverse population. While some journalism organizations had to be shamed into taking newsroom diversity seriously, CQS led the nation in mentoring and training young journalists of color for opportunities in a fast-changing media landscape.
The program inspired me to lean into my identity and find stories that others in the newsroom might pass over. In a way, the Teaneck desegregation story is a tribute to what CQS did for me.
The print version of the story jumped to an entire page inside – that part of it was pretty cool, too.
|Follow our “CQS 25th Anniversary” Series|