For more than 100 years, the Society of Professional Journalists has “worked to improve and protect journalism, believing that a free press is the cornerstone of our nation and our liberty.” The SPJ counts nearly 10,000 journalists, students, journalism educators, PR professionals and others as members.
To become a member of the Greater Charlotte chapter of SPJ, you must first join the national SPJ. To join now, click here.
SPJ offers six types of memberships, with annual dues such as $75 for professionals and $37.50 for students, recent graduates and retirees. Multi-year memberships are available, and dues also can be paid in monthly installments. SPJ also offers newsroom memberships.
The Greater Charlotte chapter currently does not require separate dues, but you must designate “Greater Charlotte Pro” as your local chapter in order to officially join our organization.
Q. What do I get for joining?
- Professional development opportunities: SPJ offers training year-round, both in-person and online on topics such public records, social media, dealing with data and the business of freelancing
- Advocacy: Since its inception, the SPJ has worked to protect the flow of information. Among these efforts is the Legal Defense Fund, which collects and distributes money for help journalist defending the freedom of speech and press. SPJ also pushes for accountability in journalism through its Code of Ethics.
- Recognition of work: The national SPJ honors the work of professional and collegiate journalists each year through its Sigma Delta Chi and Mark of Excellence awards. The Greater Charlotte Pro chapter also plans to launch an awards program for local journalists.
- Job search assistance: SPJ offers an online job bank exclusively for its members, as well as a freelance listing.
- Subscription to Quill magazine and SPJ Leads, a weekly online newsletter.
- Discounts on car rentals, car insurance and medical insurance.
Q. I don’t live in Charlotte. Can I join your chapter?
Our chapter is the Charlotte metro area – roughly the area within a 60-mile radius of uptown Charlotte. That includes the I-85 communities from Salisbury south, and the I-77 communities from Statesville south.
We are one of two professional SPJ chapters in the state. The other is North Carolina Pro, which will take members who are not in Charlotte’s coverage area.
Officially, SPJ members are free to join any chapter they wish, but practically speaking, no one wants to see chapters competing to take each other’s members.
Hickory and Asheville are open territory for either chapter. We can take SPJ members in South Carolina, which does not have an active Pro chapter at this moment.
Q. I joined SPJ elsewhere. How can I join the local group?
We don’t require any local dues on top of the national dues. Any professional journalist who belongs to the national group can become a member of the chapter by designating “Greater Charlotte Pro” on your membership application.
Q. I belong to another journalism organization. Why should I join SPJ?
The Charlotte SPJ chapter includes journalists and journalism supporters working on multiple platforms in companies large and small in the Charlotte area. Because of the national organization’s long history, the local chapter can tap into a network of experts with many years of experience. The national organization has focused on freedom of information, First Amendment issues and ethics ever since its inception in 1909 as Sigma Delta Chi. Fostering diversity is a primary goal. On the local level, the organization is open to partnering with other journalism and communications organizations to further mutual goals.
Q. How do I sign up again?
Q. Have more questions?