Annual Conference: The future is now


The HSPA and Foundation Annual Conference promises a trove of information and hobnobbing for Indiana newspaper professionals.

Mark your calendars for the yearly meeting of media minds, designed to offer industry ideas and opportunities for increasing revenue and collaborating.

The event Sept. 25-26 will bring together the state’s newspaper publishers, executives and advertising and circulation staffs at the JW Marriott in downtown Indianapolis.

Register by Aug. 21 for early-bird rates. Registration is available online here or via brochures newspapers received by mail.

The conference includes a fundraising golf outing Sept. 25 followed by the Governor’s Recep­tion that evening. Gov. Mike Pence attended last year and has been invited to this year’s event.

The speakers and round-tables available Sept. 26 offer topics of interest to everyone from publishers and executives to advertising and circulation staffs.

This month’s edition of The Publisher will highlight speaker Ken Paulson, president of the First Amendment Center.

Paulson, also dean of the College of Mass Communication at Middle Tennessee State University and former editor in chief of USA Today, will bring his signature candor to his session on the value of newspapers.

His expertise makes him a sought-after speaker.

Previously, he served as editor and senior vice president/news for USA Today. He now serves as a columnist on USA Today’s board of contributors, writing about First Amendment issues and the news media.

Throughout his career, Paulson has drawn on his background as both a journalist and lawyer, serving as the editor or managing editor of newspapers in five states.

He was among the team of journalists who founded USA Today in 1982 before moving on to managing newsrooms in Westchester County, N.Y.; Green Bay, Wis.; and Bridgewater, N.J.; and at Florida Today in Brevard County, Fla.

Other conference speakers include:

• Val Hoeppner, who will offer workable strategies to use social media effectively for newspapers. The former photojournalist and multimedia director turned trainer presented a hands-on workshop several years ago in Indianapolis and received rave reviews.

• Daniel Schaub, McClatchy Co.’s corp­orate director for audience development, who will convey ways to develop leadership and will explain converting from circulation to audience development through multiple products.

• Kevin Slimp, a newspaper consultant, who will speak on customer service and the future of newspapers.

• Larry Maynard, a newspaper consultant who will discuss ways to improve sales across platforms. Maynard works with newspapers to improve advertising, operational and financial performance.

• Mark Cohen, pub­lisher of The Akron (Ohio) Beacon Journal and, who will give tips on developing long-term relationships with clients to build new revenue. He will address strategies from pre-call prep to closing the deal.

A plethora of round table topics will provide time for sharing ideas at the end of the day.

After the conference, advertising professionals and publishers will stay as the HSPA Foundation hosts its Advertising Awards gala with reception and dinner.

Registrants may choose the Annual Con­ference events they want to attend and pay accordingly.

The brochure lists these options: golf ($115); the Governor’s Reception, including dinner ($75); the Friday conference, including break­fast and lunch ($75); and the Advertising Awards Gala, including reception and dinner ($50).

These fees are the early bird rates, so register now for the discount.

To compare, someone attending the 2014 Thursday evening event, Friday conference and Friday advertising gala will pay $5 more than last year, which included only one dinner.

No separate dinner following the golf outing means a lower registration fee to play. And anyone playing in the Foundation’s fundraiser for the first-time receives a $25 discount.

Please complete the form on the back of the brochure newspapers received by mail, or register online now by clicking here.

Make all hotel regis­trations online through the link available by clicking here. The event group rate, along with an HSPA subsidy, make the room rate $145 plus parking and taxes.

Newspapers who participate in HSPA’s ICAN advertising program also receive an additional $75 off a room on Sept. 25.

For more information or to register, visit or call (317) 803-4774.