The Texas Press Association has a new address at 305 S. Congress Ave. in Austin. The old headquarters building at 718 W. 5th St. will be demolished to make room for a new high-rise condominium complex as the city's skyline continues to change.
Meanwhile, our friends at the Austin American-Statesman have welcomed us into their building where the TPA staff has been busy unpacking and settling in.
As I write this column, publishers from across the country are preparing to attend the National Newspaper Association convention in San Antonio. Many Texas newspapers will be represented as we gather to welcome our colleagues and do our part to make the event a resounding success. TPA is hosting an evening at the Rio Cibolo Ranch for a barbecue dinner, dancing, hayrides and a chance for a photo with a real, live longhorn.
Even as the NNA convention is underway, plans are being made for the Texas Press Association's Midwinter Conference. It is slated Jan. 22-24, 2015, at the beautiful Moody Gardens Hotel in Galveston. I hope you plan to attend as we gather to strengthen friendships, exchange ideas, and chart the course of community journalism as it moves toward the future. We will also take the opportunity to honor those selected for induction into the Texas Newspaper Foundation Hall of Fame.
While on that subject, nominations to the Hall of Fame are now being accepted. A nomination form can be downloaded at http://tinyurl.com/HallofFame2015. There you will find instructions and eligibility requirements. Please hurry, however, as the deadline for submitting nominations is October 15, 2014.
I want to take this opportunity to offer my congratulations to Donnis Baggett on receiving the James Madison Award from the Freedom of Information Foundation of Texas in recognition of his outstanding commitment to upholding the principles of the First Amendment. Donnis is TPA's executive vice president in charge of legislative programs. He works closely with our Legislative Advisory Committee to coordinate our lobbying efforts while the legislature is in session and to cultivate and maintain relationships with lawmakers and their staffs between sessions. The next legislative session will convene on January 12, 2015.
As always, the TPA staff is busy working to support us as we strive to improve our newspapers. Don't hesitate to contact them if they can be of assistance. Likewise, if you have an idea that you believe will help our industry, please be sure to call TPA. Mike Hodges is our executive director and he is really good at routing ideas to the people who can best implement them and sharing those ideas with all Texas newspapers.
I hope to see you in San Antonio...and Galveston.