WASHINGTON (March 5, 2015) — National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ) President Bob Butler announced that Bill Wells will serve as Honorary Chair for the 2015 NABJ Convention & Career Fair to be held in Minneapolis, Aug. 5-9, 2015.
“Wells is a committed member of NABJ who always supports our programs and services. We know he will have great ideas to make this year’s convention in Minneapolis very memorable,” said Butler. “He will be a great asset to our Convention team as they provide our members with career-building workshops and entertaining special events.”
Wells is President of W. Wells & Associates, LLC, a management company specializing in diversity strategy and inclusion solutions. Wells designs and facilitates workshops and executive leadership retreats focusing on organizational and human resources issues.
“Bill has been enthusiastic about assisting with our convention since we first mentioned it to him,” said Rod Hicks, Chairman of the 2015 NABJ Convention, which will celebrate the organization’s 40th anniversary. “He has an excellent track record of bringing partners on board to assist with major projects.
Wells is well connected and very involved in various aspects of the Twin Cities community. He has begun assisting in several convention programs, including JSHOP, the NABJ journalism workshop for high school students, as well as NABJ’s Town Hall, a collaboration with the Minneapolis community that will be open to the public. In his role as honorary chair, Wells will assist NABJ on its corporate partnerships and will from time to time solicit support and assistance from friends, colleagues and associates, including Cornell Leverette Moore, a former board member and chairman of the Greater Minneapolis Convention & Visitors Association.
Wells previously served as Managing Partner for Inclusion Inc., a company that provides inclusion & diversity solutions. In 2000, Wells was appointed to the position of Vice President, Global Diversity /Chief Diversity Officer for The St. Paul Companies (now Travelers).
Butler also announced that veteran journalist Leisa Richardson, of the Indianapolis Star, will serve as Special Events Chair for the Minneapolis convention. Richardson was selected by Hicks and will lead the planning of the Opening Reception, Opening Ceremony, three plenary sessions, the Salute to Excellence Gala and Gospel Brunch.
Richardson has been an NABJ member since 1985 and has attended every national convention since 1986. She served two terms on the Board as a Regional Director and represented NABJ on the UNITY Board of Directors for two terms. She was Convention Chair for the gatherings in Las Vegas in 2007 and Tampa in 2009 and program lead for Indianapolis in 2006 and UNITY 2008 in Chicago.
NABJ expects thousands of journalists, media executives, public relations professionals, and students in attendance to network, participate in professional development sessions and celebrate excellence in journalism.
An advocacy group established in 1975 in Washington, D.C., NABJ is the largest organization for journalists of color in the nation, and provides career development as well as educational and other support to its members worldwide.