2013-14 All-State Team honored by IJEA at year-end event

Twelve Illinois high school media staff members named to the 2013-14 All-State Journalism Team, sponsored by the Illinois Journalism Education Association, were honored in a ceremony Saturday, June 7, at the Executive Mansion in Springfield.  Also honored was the Illinois Journalist of the Year and runner up.

The event was hosted by the Illinois Press Foundation. Dann Gire, film critic for the Daily Herald of Arlington Heights, was the featured speaker.

The All-State Journalism Team recognizes those students who have proven themselves to be indispensable to their respective school media, recognizing those students who are “most valuable players” — those students whose leadership, energy, dedication, and expertise make their publications possible but whose main contributions often occur behind the scenes.

A student journalist had to be nominated by his or her adviser, who must be a member of the IJEA.

Each member of the All-State Journalism Team received a plaque, and his or her adviser was honored as well.

Members of the 2013-14 team include:

• Gabrielle Abesamis is a senior and the co-editor of the website nileswestnews.org at Niles West High School. She loves conducting interviews and breaking news stories. Her samples included coverage of a school visit from Sen. Dick Dubin and a piece on the drug Molly. She is advised by Evelyn Lauer.

• Senior Holly Baldacci is the EDITOR-IN-CHIEF at The Voice newspaper at Huntley High School where she oversees the production of the newspaper and the website, huntleyvoice.com, and is constantly learning new skills like people management and leadership tactics. Her samples included a book review and a column on the Hi CoHort program. Her adviser is Dennis Brown.

• Nicholas Boose, senior, is the editor of the Kaneland Krier newsmagazine, where he supervises the business and production staffs, with the motivation that students at Kaneland High need information, and the paper is there to make sure they have it. His samples included indepth coverage of an assembly and a lifestyle piece on the flu. He is advised by Kimberly Reese.

• Junior Michael Glick, EDITOR-IN-CHIEF, sports editor and sports columnist of the U-High Midway at the University of Chicago High School in Chicago, represents journalism in the school, according to his adviser, Wayne Brasler, who notes Michael is an excellent researcher, writer … and page designer. His samples included an advertisement and a piece on an athlete whose health sidelined him.

• Nabi Dressler, senior EDITOR-IN-CHIEF for The Prospector newspaper at Prospect High School, writes stories each issue, edits numerous stories, designs Page One and assorted other pages and leads the staff. Her samples included a story on e-cigarettes and a pullout section on the girls’ golf team. Her adviser is Jason Block.

• Senior Sarah Foster, managing editor at the MHS Mirror at Mattoon High School, is responsible for all editing, art and graphics, overall design, style sheets and deadlines. Her samples included a series on poverty and a photo essay. She is advised by Amanda Bright.

• Mackensie Harrison just finished her sophomore year, but as copy editor of The Echo yearbook at Cisne High School, she has been invaluable, editing for AP and local style, and working with staffers to write concisely and with human interest. Her samples included the yearbook cover and a Homecoming spread. She is advised by Trudy Hurd.

• Jessica Lynk is the editor-in-chief of The Correspondent newspaper at John Hersey High School, where she makes sure all work is completed by section editors, from story ideas through publication. Her samples included a story on the drills in school and a design incorporating statistics and military colors. She is advised by Janet Levin.

• Senior Rachel Mueller is editor-in-chief for both the Timepiece yearbook and the Launch Pad newspaper at Okawville Jr./Sr. High School, jobs that require oversight of both publications, even fundraising! Her samples included the yearbook cover and a spread she designed as she worked with the new junior high members of the staff. She is advised by Dana Donovan.

• Walker Post, a senior editor-in-chief for the Lane Warrior at Lane Tech College Prep High School, decides on the newspaper’s layout, what stories will be published and final copy editing. His samples included a piece on the dangers of injuries for athletes and a feature on the Uncle Fun business that closed after nearly 40 years. He is advised by Seth Johnson.

• Senior Kelly Reilley, as editor-in-chief of the Equus yearbook at Belvidere North High School, is responsible for all aspects of the yearbook production, from cover design to page creation to editing the final product, as well as other projects from the journalism program. Her samples included the cover of the yearbook and the girls’ bowling team spread. She is advised by Mike Doyle.

• Katarina Weber, a senior at Elk Grove High School, is the editor-in-chief of The Guardian newspaper, where she edits stories, assigns pages, does layout and design and manages her staff. Her samples included an indepth piece on Elk Grove’s cultural diversity and one on faculty Twitter accounts. She is advised by Alissa Prendergast.

Post was cited for being the 2014 Journalist of the Year and Foster the runner-up.

Also honored were Marc Eckmann and Michele Sinclair, principals of Belvidere North and Mattoon high schools respectively, as IJEA Administrators of the Year.