Five women in media will be honored for their contributions as journalists in the community on Thursday, Feb. 6, 11:30 a.m., at the DeKalb History Center in downtown Decatur.
On Common Ground News’ Valerie J. Morgan, Crossroads News Jennifer Ffrench Parker, radio personality Rashan Ali, Channel 11’s Karyn Greer and former State Sen. Steen Miles, who used to work for Channel 11, at the history center’s “Honoring Women in the Media” event.
The seventh annual celebration, hosted during Black History Month, honors African Americans who are making a difference in the community and leaving a legacy in journalism.
“This is always an exciting event where we recognize just some of our current African American leaders who are impacting our local history,” said History Center Executive Director Melissa Forgey.
The Champion Newspaper Publisher Carolyn Glenn,will serve as Mistress of Ceremonies for the event. Carlisa N. Johnson, an Agnes Scott College senior, will provide entertainment.
The Champion Newspaper is the presenting sponsor for the luncheon awards program. Tickers are required and seating is limited. Tickets are $30 for members of the DeKalb History Center and $35 for non-members.
The DeKalb History Center is located at 101 East Court Square, Decatur. For more information or to purchase tickets, call 404-373-1088, ext. 22, or visit www.dekalbhistory.org. The DeKalb History Center is located at 101 East Court Square, Decatur
The honorees are:
Valerie Morgan: Morgan is the Editor-in-Chief of On Common Ground Inc., a news agency that provides print and online coverage in DeKalb County and the metro Atlanta area.
Valerie, a veteran journalist with more than 30 years in the news industry, formerly worked as an editor for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution before helping her husband, Glenn L. Morgan, launch On Common Ground News in April 1995.
The award-winning newspaper (www.ocgnews.com) has served to enlighten, enrich and educate the community for nearly two decades and provides news to the East Metro Atlanta area. The news agency supports small businesses throughout the metro Atlanta area through a number of collaborative initiatives.
On Common Ground News is a community business partner with Stephenson High School, the feeder schools in the Stephenson cluster and the Voices of Faith Academy in Stone Mountain. The newspaper also is a partner of the 100 Black Men of DeKalb mentoring organization for youths and the South DeKalb YMCA academies, where Valerie and Glenn serve on the board of directors. Valerie is a member of the board of directors for the Greater Lithonia Chamber of Commerce and a member of the Rockdale County Chamber of Commerce.
Rashan Ali: Aliis a revered multimedia personality within the sports and entertainment industries. Ali has worked for all of the major urban radio stations as an on air personality, including HOT 107.9 FM, V-103 FM, and currently Streetz 94.5 as the host of “The Streetz Morning Grind.”
Ali has appeared as an actress “3 Can Play That Game” with Vivica Fox and Terri J Vaughn, “The Gospel,” with Boris Kodjoe and “Trois 3,” produced by Will Packer. She was recently cast to star opposite of actress Gabrielle Union in an upcoming movie titled Being Mary Jane.
Ali has worked as a sideline reporter for the Atlanta Hawks and in 2009, Rashan joined an elite group when she became one of a few African American women providing sports commentary on a national scale as a reporter for the Chick-Fil-A Bowl Preview Show, which aired on ESPN 2 and ESPN U. She became the Social Media Correspondent for NBA TV’s “GameTime” during the 2010-2013 NBA Playoffs.
In 2006, she founded Sporty Girls, Inc., a non-profit organization that encourages the development of life skills in girls’ ages 8-18. Ali added author to her list of accomplishments with the 2013 release of her first children’s book, “Piper Sky’s Pink Popsicle Shoes.”
Karyn Greer: A long-time Atlanta resident, Greer is well known in the local television market. She is the past president of the Atlanta Press Club and currently serves on the Board of Governor’s for the National Academy of Television, Arts & Sciences.
The Emmy award-winning anchor for WXIA-TV 11 Alive is also a member of the Magnolia Chapter of The Links Inc., a board member of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, a member of the Greater North Atlanta Chapter of Jack and Jill of America Inc., and she is on the board of The Sport of Giving. She is also a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc.
Jennifer Ffrench-Parker: The editor of publisher and co-founder of CrossRoadsNews. Prior to starting the newspaper in 1995, Parker was a reporter and assistant metro editor at the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
Under her leadership, CrossRoadNews, has won numerous “Excellence in Journalism” awards from the Atlanta Association of Black Journalists. Parker says since it started, CrossRoadsNews has covered issues important to South DeKalb residents and has kept them abreast of is neighborhood happenings, and noteworthy events and people in the community.
Parker has also worked as a business writer for the Charlotte Observer in Charlotte, N.C., the Times Herald Record in Middletown, N.Y., and the Wall Street Transcript in New York. She also served as a general assignment reporter with The Daily Gleaner and Daily News in Kingston, Jamaica.
Steen “Newslady” Miles: A journalist and civic leader, Miles is a former Senator for Georgia’s 43rd District; which includes East DeKalb County and Rockdale County. Miles is the former Georgia Broadcast Editor for United Press International in Atlanta. She is also a three-time Emmy award-winning reporter/anchor for WXIA-TV 11 Alive, the NBC affiliate in Atlanta from which she retired in 1999 after 15 years.
Prior to her election to the Georgia Senate in 2004, for three years Senator Miles was Chief Media Relations Officer for MARTA.Miles is the recipient of dozens of journalism and civic awards and commendations. In the Senate, Miles led the fight for reforms in the title pawn industry, fought for additional funding for the Katie Beckett waiver for children with special needs and fought for women’s rights.
Miles is a former two-term President of the Stone Mountain Chapter of Jack and Jill of America, Inc. She is currently writing a book chronicling her 30 years in television news and she is a candidate for the U.S. Senate.