Saturday, April 22, 2006

Friday, and I'm fried

I second what Deirdre posted about James O’Byrne. What he says puts you in awe of all the journalists who dealt with Katrina’s destruction, and are still having to deal with it, wherever they work, whatever they do, in their professional lives and in their personal ones.

His speech reminded us what journalism and newspapers mean for people on the street, and how much we still connect with them. Wall Street and the futurists can fret all they want to, but the people of New Orleans and the Times-Picayune know what the score truly is.

On top of that, we were also wowed at the banquet tonight by a couple of other great speeches — one from Diego Sorbara, our 2005 Aubespin scholar, and one from Paul Soucy of USA Today, the winner of ACES’ first Robinson Prize for excellence in copy editing.

Both these guys were boffo — not a word I use lightly, or very often. In fact, I doubt I’ve ever used it before. But whatever.

Diego was engaging, funny, and uplifting. Not a combo you’d expect from someone speaking for the first time to a few hundred future colleagues.

And Paul, quietly passionate, reminded us that copy editors deserve recognition for what they do, and it’s great that ACES is giving them a way to get it. And his jokes were great, too.

I’m exhausted and falling asleep, so I’d better lie down before I keel over onto the keyboard. Unless somebody’s keeping something from me big-time, it looks like things are going along pretty nicely.

Two down, one to go. And then we start back up on next year’s conference and beyond.

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