By Kevin M. Goldberg
“To hell with getting it first, just get it right!” Though he didn’t originate this phrase, I can guarantee that no one stated it with more assertiveness or passion than my former boss and mentor Richard M. (“Dick”) Schmidt, Jr. I’ve invoked Dick often in the past including, specifically, in writing about the National Press Foundation, because he not only helped shape my passion for the First Amendment and journalism but also served as my entree to NPF by preceding me as a Board member and suggesting that I replace him when he stepped down. Thus, it is for many reasons related to Dick Schmidt that I’m Chairman of the Board of the NPF right now.
It’s been a while since Dick died in 2004 but I’ve been thinking about him a lot over the past year. He’d be appalled at the attacks on the First Amendment and efforts to delegitimize journalism – and facts generally. He’d be equally frustrated with the ever-increasing race to publish that has certainly accelerated with the advent of social media.
But I know he’d be proud of the work the NPF is doing to make good journalists better. That’s because our programs are focused on ensuring those journalists get their stories right, no matter how difficult or complex the topic or issue. From a targeted webinar on campaign finance to a four-day program which takes a 360 degree view of all aspects of the opioid crisis to our Paul Miller Fellowship for journalists new to Washington (now in its 30th year!), the NPF offers something to make every journalist smarter and better equipped to accurately inform the public.
And it’s all free. Which is where you come in. NPF relies on our grantors, sponsors, the public and you to continue to make these programs accessible to journalists across the country and around the world. With your help, we can continue to ensure that journalists will continue to get it right – first, last and always.
Your contribution to NPF, a 501(c)(3), is tax-deductible.