CCMA honors L.A. Times columnist Steve Lopez at annual awards banquet

The California College Media Association is pleased to honor Steve Lopez as a champion of First Amendment rights.  Lopez, a nationally renowned columnist for the Los Angeles Times since 2001, has made an art of giving voice to those in L.A. who might otherwise be ignored. His fiery writing shows impatience with corruption and bureaucratic indifference. As a writer for Time, Inc., Lopez wrote for Sports Illustrated, Life and Entertainment Weekly. Prior to his work for Time, he wrote for the Philadelphia Inquirer, the San Jose Mercury News, and the Oakland Tribune. His book “The Soloist,” based on reporting and writing about a homeless man on Skid Row, became a highly acclaimed film.

The Leland Yee Award is named in honor of a  California legislator committed to press freedoms.

Remarks from Steve Lopez:

First of all, let me apologize for a scheduling conflict. As many of you know, the L.A. Times Festival of Books is this weekend at USC, and attendance by Times employees — as well as appearances on panels — is not necessarily optional. I’m sorry I can’t be with you.

I’d like to thank the media association for its support of college media in California. In 1975, I got my B.A. in journalsim from San Jose State University, and that institution last year made the questionable move of bestowing on me an honorary doctorate degree for reasons that are still not clear to me. But I was happy to accept, because it gave me a chance to make a graduation speech about the short-sighted budget cuts that are decimating the very institutions that for decades drove the state’s economic engine. I met recently in L.A. with some of the San Jose State brass, which is looking for creative ways to align with professional media organizations and build a foundation for survival in tough times.

I don’t have all the answers. What I know is that there’s a hunger for reliable reporting, which is more than a commodity. It’s a critical element in a democratic society, and we must all find ways to preserve free speech and hard-nosed investigative reporting that keeps the public informed and public officials accountable.

These days, we in media are accused of having biases and political agendas. I actually get it from both the right and the left, depending on the day and the subject matter. What I sometimes say in response is that I’ve never been in a newsroom — and the Times is the eighth in my 37-year career — in which the news staff was interested in anything other than telling the truth and going after the bastards, whoever they might be.

I’ve been privileged, as well, to serve in the company of journalists by the hundreds whose mission is to shine a light on social injustice and economic disparity, and while it may be a well-worn cliche, I was honored years ago to win the H.L. Mencken Award, because he’s the man who described the job like this — comfort the afflicted, afflict the comfortable.

Thank you, give ’em hell, and as for you younger journalists in the audience, I wish you well, but please don’t take my job. I love it too much.

CCMA honors Randy Hagihara with Outstanding Service Award

The California College Media Association has relied on the service of Randy Hagihara since the organization’s founding in 2003. As senior editor for recruitment at the Los Angeles Times and director of the paper’s reporter training and summer internship programs, Randy has been an invaluable resource for many of our students, offering guidance as they made the transition from student to professional media.

Randy worked at the Los Angeles Times for 21 years, serving as senior editor for recruitment and director of the paper’s reporter training and summer internship programs. Prior to that he was city editor of the Times’ Orange County edition. Hagihara also served as Peninsula bureau chief at the San Jose Mercury News, which won the Pulitzer Prize for its coverage of the Loma Prieta earthquake in 1989. He was night city editor at the Oakland Tribune, an editor and police reporter at the Peninsula Times Tribune and reporter/photographer for a number of other newspapers in California. A native of Los Angeles, he attended Los Angeles Trade Technical College and Cal State Northridge.

His constant willingness to speak to students about applying for jobs and internships, along with the mentorship he has offered to new professionals at the Times, have made him a cherished resource. Additionally, Randy has served CCMA directly, coordinating judging for our General Excellence category and other categories for many years running. The CCMA board, along with hundreds of students and advisers, owe Randy a huge “thank you” for his dedication and service.

Important information about CCMA Spring Career Workshop and Awards Banquet

Thank you for registering for our CCMA event this weekend at CSU Fullerton. We have a full weekend planned for students, advisers and some families attending to see their students win. Nearly 100 are signed up for the workshop and more than 200 will be at the awards ceremony.

The following are some key details to know in advance and a link to a map.

Schedule & information

Friday, April 20
>> 1:30 p.m.: Tour of the Orange County Register. Meet in the lobby. For a map/directions, click here. Open to those who signed up.
>> 6-8 p.m.: Students Night Out: Bowling, billiards, food and fun. Mix and mingle with other students at Titan Bowl & Billiards at Titan Student Union. For CSU Fullerton map, click here.


Saturday, April 21
>> 8 – 9 a.m.: Registration, at CSU Fullerton Titan Student Union, Portola Pavilion

***Please tell students to bring copies of their resumes, cover letters or portfolios for the critique sessions with experienced recruiters. When they register they will then sign up for a critique session during the day. Space is limited, so please remind them to come prepared.***

Workshops: 9:15 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. (pastries and lunch included)
>> Recent grads share their experiences in the real world (and how they landed a job).
>> From social media, blogs and a digital portfolio, how to  build your brand and get hired.
>> Crossover skills you will need to succeed in today’s market.
>> To go to grad school or not?
>> Interactive interview workshop.

Awards Banquet, 6:30 p.m., Titan Student Union, Portola Pavilion
>> Join us for dinner as we recognize the year’s best in student media. Check in starts at 6:30 p.m., dinner is served by 7 p.m.

Dress: We leave that up to you. In the past some students have dressed up. That said, we recommend casual to semi-formal. This is California, so anything goes!

Hotel, travel & parking information

Airport: The John Wayne Airport is about 18 miles from the CSU Fullerton campus. For a map, click here.

Hotel: CCMA has booked a block of rooms at the Fullerton Marriott for $79 per night. It is next to the university and within walking distance of the Titan Student Union. Reserve your room early, call 1-714-738-7800 and mention the CCMA rate.

CSU Fullerton parking: For maps and parking information, click here. There is free parking in the State College Parking Structure (SCPS) which is near the Titan Student Union and at the Marriott Hotel (M-HTL). Directions to the Titan Student Union:

From the North:
Take the 57 Freeway South and exit at Yorba Linda Blvd.
Turn right (west) onto Yorba Linda Blvd.
Turn left (south) onto State College Blvd.
Turn left onto Student Union Way.
The Titan Student Union will be located in front of you.
From the South:
Take the 57 Freeway North and exit at Nutwood Ave.
Turn left (west) onto Nutwood Ave.
Turn right (north) onto State College Blvd.
Turn right onto Student Union Way.
The Titan Student Union will be located in front of you.
Download the map.
If you have any questions, please contact CCMA President Melissa Lalum, 818-677-2243,


CCMA 2011 contest call for entries

The CCMA is seeking entries for the 2011 California College Media Competition. All entries must be postmarked by Dec. 12, 2011. Follow these instructions to enter the contest:

1. Download and read the rules and details about the competition.

2. If you have not done so this fall, fill out the membership form.

3. Renew your membership with a check payable to CCMA or submit your payment via PayPal. Log in to your account, or create a new one, and send the payment of $125 to the CCMA at

4. Compile your entries. Follow the guidelines in the video below:


5. Mail payment, entry form(s), adviser signature page, one disk with visual entries and actual entries to:
California College Media Association
c/o Amy Emmert
118 Kerckhoff Hall
308 Westwood Plaza
Los Angeles, CA 90024-1641

Questions? Contact Amy Emmert,, or call 424-652-8644.

CCMA 2010-2011award winners & link to past winners

This year’s California College Media Association Awards Banquet featured dozens of winners from across the state and a record turn out. The event, held at the Renaissance Hotel in Hollywood, California, honored the best in the state’s student media and also recognized CNPA Legal Counsel Jim Ewert as a champion of First Amendment rights and CAL-JEC’s Educator of the Year Melissa Lalum, of California State University Northridge.

For a complete list of the 2010 winners, click here. To see past year’s winners, click here.

Check back in the fall for information about next year’s competition and banquet.

Each year the California College Media Association holds a competition to honor excellence in student media at junior college and university publications throughout the state. The competition typically draws hundreds of entries from both large and small schools. The contest is free for member publications.