IJEA inducts Stan Zoller, Brenda Field into 2017 Hall of Fame

For passage of New Voices Illinois and more, IJEA honors these two journalism educators


Cathy Wall, herself a member of the IJEA Hall of Fame, inducted Stan Zoller and Brenda Field into the 2017 class of the IJEA Hall of Fame during the IHSA State Journalism Competition at Eastern Illinois University.

The Hall of Fame honors individual scholastic media educators who have made outstanding and sustained contributions to the success and progress of IJEA and scholastic media education. IJEA Hall of Fame inductees have served IJEA and the education of student journalists in Illinois by contributing to the field of student journalism and achieving personal goals related to student journalism.

Zoller and Field have represented Illinois in the national scholastic journalism arena, they have served advisers and students in Illinois for decades on the IJEA board and as state directors, and their work in getting the New Voices legislation passed in Illinois (HB 5902) was nothing short of monumental.

As one of the witnesses for the bill, Wall said she was privileged to see Zoller and Field in action in Springfield, but that was only the very tip of the iceberg. The real work went on behind the scenes with countless phone calls and letters and meetings and networking that built support for the legislation within both the House and the Senate. They were tireless in their support, investing a great deal of time and energy to see Illinois become a state where students can proudly say that freedom of the student press is guaranteed.

Since the law has passed, Zoller and Field have moved on to the next phase, beginning the process of educating Illinois teachers and stakeholders about what the law entails. A telephone conference earlier this year showed that they are not content to sit on their laurels, but they want to continue as advocates for a free student press by developing an action plan that will make valuable resources available to Illinois teachers.

In addition to their legislative work, both Field and Zoller maintain a visible presence at state, regional and national conventions, presenting and advocating forever increasing professionalism among teachers and increased opportunities for students. Their devotion to high school journalists and to their advisers is unconditional and extends to their leadership roles in both JEA and IJEA. For all these things, and for bringing New Voices legislation to Illinois, we proudly induct Stan Zoller and Brenda Field into the IJEA Hall of Fame, class of 2017, and add their pictures to the Hall of Fame Wall in Buzzard Hall.