Advisers gather together after a luncheon at the 2017 IJEA Fall Conference.
Advisers gather together after a luncheon at the 2017 IJEA Fall Conference.

Holley-Bruns, Doerner receive IJEA honors for their service

September 18, 2017

For one, it was her final year directing the IJEA Fall Conference at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. For the other, it was a lifetime of service as past president of the Illinois Journalism Education Association.

Lynn Holley-Bruns was selected as the 2017 Friend of Scholastic Journalism for her efforts to organize and coordinate the IJEA Fall Conference at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign for the last 14 years.

Regardless, IJEA was not going to let either retire without honoring their contributions to the statewide journalism advisers organization.

Lynn Holley-Bruns, lecturer of journalism at U of I and IJEA at-large board member, led the annual scholastic journalism event for the last 14 years as its executive director, providing thousands of high school journalists with encouragement and inspiration. This year, she was selected as the 2017 Friend of Scholastic Journalism.

Below is the text of the speech given by IJEA Vice President John Gonczy, Marist High School adviser, regarding Holley-Bruns’ enormous contributions to scholastic media in Illinois.

“One of the highlights of this day is the opportunity to recognize individuals or organizations for outstanding support of media programs in high schools throughout our great state.  The IJEA does this annually at the fall convention by award the Friend of Scholastic Journalism Award.  This year, as pleased as the IJEA board is to bestow this award upon its most deserving recipient, it is also an occasion that we find bittersweet because this marks her final year as executive director of the IJEA fall conference.

“Since 2004, Lynn Holley-Bruns’ service in hosting this annual conference and as a member of the IJEA board, has provided exemplary and steadfast support for Illinois high school media programs.  The combination of Lynn’s passion, energy, warmth, intelligence and wonderful sense of humor have helped to shape a wonderful climate among us in the IJEA.  She has, through her work and presence, lent integrity and brightness to our organization.  And just think of how many high school journalists left the IJEA fall conference over these past 13 years energized and empowered-due in large part to Lynn’s perennial devotion.

“Lynn is about to embark upon a well-deserved retirement and, as she takes her leave, the IJEA wants her to know how grateful we are to her.  It is my great honor, on behalf of our organization, to present the 2017 Friend of Scholastic Journalism Award to our great colleague and friend, Lynn Holley-Bruns.”



Sarah Doerner, past president of IJEA, receives a plaque from IJEA Vice President John Gonczy in recognition of her 10 years as president. Doerner was the longest-serving president in IJEA history.

Sarah Doerner, who served as both president of IJEA for a decade and was a longtime scholastic journalism adviser in Du Quoin, was honored by the organization for her sustained service and leadership. Doerner was, in fact, the longest-serving president of IJEA, and during her tenure, the organization grew and adapted to the ever-changing world of scholastic journalism.

Take a look at the spirit Doerner brought to IJEA by reading one of her blogs from 2016, her last year as president.

Doerner is also a member of the IJEA Hall of Fame, as well as a 2005 recipient of the Journalism Education Association Lifetime Achievement Award.



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