Well, that was an interesting season, wasn’t it!
The Press Club Board met monthly behind the scenes to organize Club business from finances to membership and more. I am very grateful to these folks—couldn’t have done it without them.
Particularly difficult was monthly programming. Program planners worked hard, dodging some stiff roadblocks, pivoting last minute, rearranging schedules to ensure the Club offered programming for members each month.
From September to February, we forged ahead with virtual programs, determined to keep the Club alive and well and doing all we could to maintain member contact.
Although our March meeting, Women in the Media, a tribute to Women’s History Month, was another virtual event, our panelists were so engaging and open in the discussion that it was as if they were with us in person. Press Club member Lorraine Ranalli and I spoke to Peg DeGrassa, Debbi Calton, and Loraine Ballard Morrill about experiences in the print and broadcast industries, touching on topics from mentoring to pay discrepancies to how the roles of women in the media are changing. They inspired me to continue pursuing excellence in communications—you, too?
In April, with COVID-19 infection rates down and the number of vaccinated people up, we were finally able to host an in-person event. Barbara Ann Zippi-Och, past president and longtime Club member, invited us to a Happy Hour at Echo Hill Farm for some outdoor networking. We enjoyed beer and wine tastings along with foods from several local venues; we met a psychic medium; viewed a collection of vintage Rolls-Royce autos; and browsed through the Barn Shop and Art Gallery. Some lucky folks won donated raffle items. It was great to see everyone!
We wrapped up this unique season in May with another in-person event, a lovely luncheon at The Inn at Swarthmore. Guest speaker, author Rich Pagano, spoke about his experiences as a sportswriter and TV host and shared his wealth of knowledge about noteworthy athletes from Delaware County. He signed copies of his books, "Delaware County Sports Legends" and "The Baron of Leiperville: The Life and Times of James F. Dougherty," for members and particularly took time to chat with two of our young college student guests. Rich’s talk motivated me to check out the Delaware County Athletes Hall of Fame, where he is an inductee in recognition of his promoting sports history in the county. I see a behind-the-scenes Press Club tour in the future?
One of the students attending, Brooklyn Vaughan of Springfield, was honored as the recipient of the Club’s Jack and Florence Steck Memorial Scholarship at Temple University. It’s one of our four fully endowed scholarships.
The Board members and I were pleased with the last season’s programming. We have met to begin planning for the 2021-2022 season and will meet again over the summer to firm up plans for programs, social events, and other opportunities for members. We’re focused on the latest ideas targeted to today’s 21st century communicators!
Have a great summer! See you in September!
Andrea DiFabio, Press Club President