2019-2020 JAWS Board of Directors

President: Mira Lowe

Mira Lowe is assistant dean for student experiences and director of the Innovation News Center (INC) at the University of Florida, College of Journalism and Communications. Prior to joining UF, Mira was a senior editor at CNN Digital in Atlanta, managing the planning, execution and programming of daily features content and special projects across a global portfolio. In her other past lives, she was editor-in-chief of JET magazine, the first woman to helm the African-American newsweekly, and assistant managing editor of Ebony magazine at Johnson Publishing Company in Chicago. She also was an associate editor and recruiter at Newsday in New York. Follow her on Twitter @miralowe.

Vice President: Carla Murphy

Carla Murphy is a social justice journalist and editorial consultant who explores race, class, status and power in and for low-income communities of color. She has reported in Haiti and on the Haitian diaspora in the wake of the 2010 earthquake, tracked economic development and labor organizing in the US and abroad, reported on police violence long before it became a major headline, gotten arrested as an independent journalist while covering criminal justice reform in New York, and addressed race and class bias in the press. Among her journalism projects, she is an editor with Echoing Ida, a media project for black women and non-binary writers, and is pursuing journalism reform through the News Integrity Initiative at CUNY and Lewis Raven Wallace’s The View from Somewhere podcast. Educated in New York City and London, she’s an immigrant from a rural Caribbean village, and a first-generation college student.

Deputy Vice President: EJ Graff

EJ Graff is managing editor of The Monkey Cage at the Washington Post, and a longtime journalist who has reported widely on social justice issues, especially gender and sexuality, in such publications as The New York Times Magazine, Newsweek, The Advocate, Foreign Policy, Mother Jones, The Nation, Out, and Vice. Learn more at ejgraff.com. Twitter: @ejgraff

Secretary: Alex Hinojosa

Alex Hinojosa is the Mass Communication Discipline and District Wide Coordinator at El Paso Community College. Additionally, she is a part-time adjunct instructor for the Journalism Department at New Mexico State University.

As a freelance journalist she has written for local periodicals for the El Paso area, and primarily for the El Paso Herald Post. She has covered several beats including education, politics and breaking news. Recently, she was part of the Washington Post reporting team that covered the mass shooting in El Paso. Other highlights include covering Pope Francis’ visit to Juarez, Mexico and the Beto O’Rourke March and Trump Rally in El Paso.

Treasurer: Deborah Douglas

Deborah Douglas is the Eugene S. Pulliam Distinguished Visiting Professor at DePauw University, managing editor of MLK50: Justice Through Journalism and a senior leader with The OpEd Project, leading public voices fellowships and programs that include the University of Texas at Austin, Dartmouth College, Columbia University, Global Policy Solutions, the Aspen Institute’s New Voices in South Africa, Urgent Action Fund in South Africa and Kenya, and Youth Narrating Our World (YNOW). While teaching at Northwestern’s Medill School, she created a graduate investigative journalism capstone on the Civil Rights Act of 1964. She is a 2019 Studs Terkel Award winner.

Board Members

J. Kyle Foster has been a professional journalist for 25 years -at daily newspapers – covering everything from house fires and tornadoes to county government, healthcare and education. She won an open records battle via the Kentucky Supreme Court. Kyle spent 16 years at Bloomberg News – starting in 2001, covering telecom, the aftermath of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks and Securities and Exchange Commission filings — until layoffs in 2017. Kyle currently is a trainer for the SPJ-and Facebook program Facebook for Journalists; a contributing writer to GrowthSpotter, an award-winning digital publication from the Orlando Sentinel; a freelancer for newspapers, newsletters and blog posts. Kyle works many part-time jobs to make ends meet, including property management and works reception at Seacrest Country Day School in Naples.

Tanya Gazdik writes about marketing for MediaPost.com, and is the editor of Marketing: Automotive Weekly. She is the lead programmer and emcee of MediaPost’s automotive marketing conferences at the New York and Los Angeles auto shows. Gazdik is president of the board of directors for Michigan State’s independent voice, The State News. Prior to MediaPost, she was at The (Toledo) Blade, Adweek, WardsAuto and The Associated Press. Gazdik has a JD and BA in journalism from Michigan State University.

Jane Isay is the author of Unconditional Love: A Guide to Navigating the Joys and Challenges of Being a Grandparent Today. Her earlier books include Walking on Eggshells: Navigating the Delicate Relationship between Adult Children and their Parents, Mom Still Likes You Best: Overcoming the Past and Reconnecting with Your Siblings, and Secrets and Lies: Surviving the Truths that Change Our Lives. She spent over 40 years as an editor, publishing Robert J. Lifton’s Nazi Doctors, Melissa Fay Greene’s Praying for Sheetrock, Patricia O’Connor’s Woe is I, K.C. Cole’s The Universe and the Teacup, Antonio Damasio’s Descartes’ Error, and Buzz Bissinger’s Friday Night Lights. She serves as co-chair of the Advisory Committee of the Office of Diversity and Inclusion at the Mount Sinai Medical School and Hospital System and is on the Editorial Board of the Association of Foreign Journalists.

Jenn Kho is director of strategic innovation for HuffPost, where she leads the development of new audience engagement, storytelling and revenue models. She is passionate about saving quality journalism by growing and improving it, making it financially sustainable and helping the industry disrupt instead of being disrupted. She was previously HuffPost’s managing editor and, prior to that, was the US managing editor for the Guardian.

Marina Trahan Martinez is a New York Times freelancer and former producer/reporter at The Dallas Morning News in Dallas, Texas.

For The Dallas Morning News Watchdog desk, Trahan Martinez investigated, reported and analyzed print, digital and KXAS-TV content, appearing on-air weekly. She served local newspapers, the Freedom of Information Foundation of Texas, Latinx community initiatives and scholarship committees. She reports Texas stories for the New York Times, produces and books for ABC News and is working on a Dallas Black Lives Matter rally-turned-shooting book. She is a member of and has spoken on panels for Investigative Reporters and Editors.

Kari Mar is a content strategist for Avanade, where she leads an editorial program dedicated to business consulting and emerging technology. Prior to her role at Avanade, Kari worked in digital media at The Seattle Times and University of Washington, as well as at various print publications in the Northwest. She is a member of the Asian American Journalists Association and Online News Association, and serves on the board of the Institute for Research and Education on Human Rights.

Fara Warner is the founder of Shokan Studios (digital media, editing, consulting), in West Shokan, New York.

She is a former JAWS board member and worked on programming for CAMP in Asheville. Fara is glad to re-engage with the organization as her career shifts away from corporate media to founding a journalism start-up with a JAWS member, returning to teaching via the Poynter Foundation, and working with a non-profit focused on pay equity for women, specifically in the media industry.

She would like to focus on fundraising as the organization continues to evolve, improving diversity within JAWS and helping with CAMP planning.


About the Board

Election of JAWS officers and new board members takes place at the annual business meeting, in conjunction with our fall Conference and Mentoring Project (CAMP).

Eligibility for the JAWS board: Any active member who has attended CAMP twice can run for a seat on the board. Officers and board members serve one- or two-year terms. All are elected by a vote of the membership.

Job description for the board: The primary responsibility of the board of directors is to ensure that the organization operates in a fashion true to its stated mission and principles. The board provides continuity to the organization as individual members come and go.

The board has two trusts: The group’s growth and future, and to further the group’s goals. It is responsible for setting policies, making decisions, delegating work and assuring the decisions are carried out.

The board is legally responsible for governance of the organization and adherence to federal, state and local laws, audits done annually and income tax form filing.

A director’s responsibilities include:

  • Maintain a current membership in JAWS and attend the annual conference.
  • Know the bylaws, mission, purpose, goals, strategic plan, programs and services for the organization.
  • Raise funds and actively seek financial support and donations for JAWS and its projects; The goal is for each board member to give or get $500.

Prepare for and attend all board meetings. The board holds regular in-person meetings twice a year, spring and fall. The date of the spring meeting is determined by the president, in consultation with other board members.  The fall meeting is held immediately preceding JAWS CAMP, at the same location. In addition, the board convenes every month via conference call. The president and committee chairs will schedule additional meetings as needed.

  • Build and guide long-range plans for membership, programming, fundraising, staffing and resources.
  • Ensure programs and services address membership needs.
  • Recruit members and attendees for annual conferences, contribute program ideas and make sure members are involved in the group.
  • Contribute and/or solicit stories for the JAWS newsletter, listserv, social media accounts and website.
  • Review the minutes to ensure that critical matters, resolutions and topics of discussion have been adequately covered.
  • Be willing to commit at least several hours per week of volunteer time to areas such as membership, social media, programming, fundraising and CAMP.