Veteran Journalist Highlights Importance of Diversity in Media

Callie Crossley, host of “Under the Radar with Callie Crossley”


Callie Crossley to Host Panel on Race, Media at Boston Public Library  

By Claire Tran

Earlier in her journalism career, Callie Crossley made what she thought was a commonsense decision while covering a story about nutrition: to interview a black family.

But she was stunned by the reactions of her colleagues, who were white. One expressed surprise that her interviewees were black. Another asked Crossley if she was related to the family.

For Crossley, now host of WGBH’s “Under the Radar with Callie Crossley,” this underscored the need for news organizations to accurately reflect the diversity of their communities.

“When I’m doing a story, I am not going to the same group of folks as often my colleagues are,” she said. “Why would every one of those voices be white? That makes no sense to me.”

Such issues will be highlighted on April 12 when Crossley hosts “In True Color: A Panel Discussion of Race, Media and Responsible Coverage” organized by the Asian American Journalists Association New England Chapter in partnership with the Boston Association of Black Journalists and National Association of Hispanic Journalists New England.

The event comes in the wake of an incident at WEEI, in which radio host Christian Fauria used a racist Asian accent to imitate high-profile sports agent Don Yee. Multiple companies, such as Citizens Bank, pulled advertisements from the station. Fauria, who apologized, was suspended for five days and employees participated in mandatory sensitivity training.

Hosted at Boston Public Library, the panel will feature Princell Hair, NBC Sports Boston Senior Vice President and General Manager; Richard Chacón, WBUR Executive Director of News Content; Shirley Leung, Boston Globe Columnist; and Mark Hannon, WEEI/Entercom Boston Senior Vice President and Market Manager.

Crossley says she will foster a discussion about fair representation and how to prevent racially insensitive incidents in media.

“If we’re about truth and we’re about making sure people get correct information, then all the voices should be at the table,” she said. “There’s one truth, but there are many perspectives on the truth.”

For Crossley, who produced the award-winning 1987 documentary series “Eyes on the Prize,” the pursuit of diversity has long been an uphill battle.

Early in her career, she often felt pigeonholed into covering certain stories. She was frequently tapped as the main reporter on race issues, yet too often she wasn’t assigned to stories that she felt needed the perspective of a journalist of color.

Although she has had success in the industry, she’s well aware of the impact of race on her career.

“Had I not been a black person, I would have gone faster and farther,” said Crossley. “I’ve done pretty well, but I can look back at various turns and know if I had the exact same opportunities as some folks that I work with, it would have been a different thing.”

She recalls a time when a co-worker complained that because he was not a person of color, he was not getting certain job offers. Crossley responded by noting that she was the only reporter of color at the company.

“Let’s look around the newsroom. There were 14 reporters at this particular station. There’s only one of me,” said Crossley. “You had 13 chances and I had one. Case closed.”

Crossley, who often guest lectures at colleges, advises young reporters to call out their own news organizations for using racial stereotypes or lacking diversity in coverage. She says the onus of journalists is to prioritize facts.

“It’s not about how many clicks you get or even about how many awards you get,” said Crossley. “It’s really about telling the stories of your communities correctly and accurately.”

In True Color: A Panel Discussion of Race, Media and Responsible Coverage, Thursday, April 12

You can see the panel on facebook video.

We’re thrilled to announce “In True Color: A Panel Discussion of Race, Media, and Responsible Coverage,” to be held at WGBH Satellite Studio and Newsfeed Cafe in Boston Public Library (700 Boylston St, Boston, MA 02116 website) on Thursday, April 12 at 6 p.m.

The Asian American Journalists Association’s New England chapter and its partners, the Boston Association of Black Journalists and National Association of Hispanic Journalists New England, want to spark a deeper conversation about race in Boston media, and how we as an industry can proactively improve our coverage.

The panel will bring together esteemed guests: NBC Sports Boston Senior Vice President & General Manager Princell Hair; WBUR Executive Director of News Content Richard Chacón; Boston Globe Columnist Shirley Leung; and WEEI/Entercom Executive Mark Hannon. This event will be moderated by WGBH TV & radio host/commentator Callie Crossley.

Space is limited and RSVPs are encouraged. Please email Young-Jin Kim, AAJA NE Secretary at

APPLY NOW! Radio Reporting for Mid-Career Journalists in Hartford

Detail on

Connecticut Public Radio (WNPR) is offering a free, two-day intensive introduction to public radio journalism for experienced professionals who might be interested in learning more about our branch of the news industry. Space is limited, so we’ll be asking interested journalists to apply. (The workshop itself is free. Attendees are responsible for their own travel and accommodations.) All journalists are welcome, and we especially hope to see applications from journalists of color.

To apply, please submit an application form by April 4, 2018.

Statement of response regarding the recent WEEI segment

Link to AAJA National’s offiial website for the statement

The Asian American Journalists Association’s MediaWatch, New England chapter, and Sports Task Force condemn the recent segment on WEEI’s “Ordway, Merloni & Fauria” in which hosts perpetuated harmful, inaccurate and insensitive stereotypes about Asian Americans. We are heartened to learn Christian Fauria personally apologized to sports agent Don Yee for his racist portrayal of Yee. We commend WEEI for quickly responding to criticism, but we call for management to take steps to ensure that racial stereotyping will never be broadcast on its airwaves and that the station’s on-air personalities have a true understanding of why the segment was so offensive.

For background:

Membership Renewal and more

It’s time to renew your 2014 AAJA membership.
Please join as a member or renew your membership today!
Members will receive substantial discounts on AAJANE events and discounted registration for the AAJA National convention.
Full Membership: $65
Students: $25
Click on the following link:
Join more than 850 journalists, news executives, photojournalists, media researchers and community leaders at the 24th Annual AAJA National Convention.
Renaissance Washington, D.C. Downtown Hotel
August 13-16, 2014
Early-bird registration deadline is April 15.
Members: $250 for professionals, $100 for students.
Clink on the following link to register for the convention:
Clink on the following link for hotel registration:
Join us for AAJANE Day at Fenway Park.
Red Sox vs Toronto Blue Jays
Sunday, September 7
1:35 pm
Our Seat Location: RF Box 87
Tickets: $60 for members, $80 for non-members and guests
To buy tickets, email:
President: Susan Choi
National Board Representative: Hanah Fadrigalan
Secretary: Cindy Atoji (Keene)
Treasurer: Dolores Kong
Vice President of Print: Shirley Leung
Vice President of Broadcast: Sangita Chandra
Vice President of Professional Development and Student Programs: Veronica Chao
Vice President of Membership: Brian Wong

See actor James Hong at the Boston Asian American Film Festival

Spotlight Event: James Hong
Behind the Scenes Secrets of Hollywood

Friday, November 11
7:00PM, MIT, 222 Memorial Drive, Building 10, Room 250 (Second Floor), Cambridge, MA
(T: Kendall Station)Actor James Hong has a prolific film and television career that spans 57 years with more than 500 roles. In this spotlight event, Mr. Hong will speak about his career and reveal secrets about the magic and realities of Hollywood.

Co-presented by MIT Asian American AssociationMIT Inventing Our Future,WGBH and Chinese Historical Society of New England.

AAJA New England member Al Young of The Boston Globe will moderate the event.
For more information, visit  Buy tickets by Sunday, Nov. 6th, and save 10%!  Enter “GETLUCKY” as the code at

Author to read new novel “Nanjing Requiem”

Author of the acclaimed “Waiting” and “A Free Life” will read his new novel “Nanjing Requiem”

Saturday, October 29, 2011, 1:00 pm-3:00 pm

Boston Chinatown Neighborhood Center, Inc.,  38 Ash St. Boston, MA 02111

(MBTA Orange Line- Tufts Medical Center Stop) Directions:

Free admission.  Books will be available for purchase and signing.

RSVP to or call 617-635-5129 x0


The award-winning author returns to his homeland in a searing new novel that unfurls during one of the darkest moments of the 20th century: the Rape of Nanjing. In 1937, with the Japanese poised to invade, Minnie Vautrin—an American missionary and the dean of Jinling Women’s College—decides to remain at the school, convinced that her American citizenship will help her safeguard the welfare of the Chinese men and women who work there. With extraordinarily evocative precision, Ha Jin re-creates the terror, the harrowing deprivations, and the menace of unexpected violence that defined life in Nanjing during the occupation.

This event is co-sponsored by Boston Chinatown Neighborhood Center ( and Asian American Resource Workshops (

AAJA Tweet-Up at ONA11

Meet the Asian American Journalists Association‘s MVTweeters IRL. AAJA National President@DorisTruong will buy the first round of appetizers, and kobe sliders are $2 each from 5 to 7. Drinks are pay-as-you-go. (We’re assembling at MiniBar, a half-block from the main ONA convention hotel, so you’ll have plenty of time to catch up, then head to the ONA Opening Night Reception.)

AAJA-Digital Co-Chair Paul Cheung (@pcheung630) will also be around to take your feedback on how to help his committee be more effective.


NECN Job Openings

Student Board Member Hanah Fadrigalan shares open job positions at New England Cable News in Newton, MA.:

Account Executive-New England Cable News-Newton, MA MA
Part time weekend AM Audio Operator-New England Cable News-Newton, MA MA
Video Editor (Part Time)-New England Cable News-Newton, MA (1 of 2) MA
Evening Robotic Camera Operator-New England Cable News-Newton, MA MA
Part time Writer-New England Cable News-Newton, MA MA
Part time Writer-New England Cable News-Newton, MA MA
Part Time Master Control Operator-New England Cable News-Newton, MA MA

If you are interested in applying, you will have to create a candidate profile first.

Please click this link to create (or update) your profile:

Then, choose from the links below on which position you want to apply for:

Account Executive

Part-time Weekend AM Audio Operator

Video Editor

Evening Robotic Camera Operator:

Part-time Writer:

Part-time Master Control Operator:

If you have any questions, feel free to email me or my work email

Health Care Coverage Training

The National Health Policy Training Alliance for Communities of Color is hosting a training for reporters who are interested in covering health care. The two-day program will take place at the St. Louis Hotel in New Orleans, Louisiana, on Wednesday, September 21, 2011, through Friday, September 23, 2011. The training aims to bring attention to important health issues that affect minority communities and to ensure that reporters have the tools, resources, and information needed to report on these topics.

As health reform implementation moves forward, the media will continue to play a key role in informing the public about how different provisions will affect their communities.

During the training, journalists will gain practical information on the different aspects of health care reporting, as well as a better understanding of health policy, regardless of skill level or years of experience. Seasoned health care journalists will lead interactive sessions that are designed to encourage participants to go back to their newsrooms and share new and innovative approaches to health care reporting with their colleagues.

Overall, the training will enable journalists to interact, learn from one another, and share strategies for reporting on health care and health disparities.

The deadline to register is August 31, 2011. There is an early bird registration fee of $35 that is due by July 29. The fee will be $75 thereafter. For more information or to register, click here.

**We have a negotiated rate of $109 (single/double occupancy) per night at the Hotel Monteleone. Reservations must be made by calling the hotel at 1-866-338-4684. To receive this preferred rate, mention that you’ll be attending the Alliance Journalist Training. The Hotel is conveniently located half a block away from the training venue, the St. Louis Hotel.

We have a limited number of fellowships available. If you would like to apply or have questions regarding this program, please contact Sherice Perry at ( or Geraldine Henrich-Koenis ( or call 202-628-3030.

We look forward to seeing you in New Orleans!

This training is sponsored by The National Health Policy Training Alliance for Communities of Color, a unique partnership between ACCESS Community Health Research Center, Asian & Pacific Islander American Health Forum, Families USA, the Joint Center Health Policy Institute, the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials Educational Fund, and the National Medical Association. It is an initiative funded by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation that is designed to build the capacity within communities of color to strengthen health policies and programs that disproportionately affect their communities.