Who doesn’t need a deadline?

I’ve been out of the newsroom longer than I was in it.

But I still need deadlines to get anything done.

Grades for the classes I teach? In – the day they are due. Travel plans? Completed, just before ticket prices rise. B-days, holidays, anniversaries? Strictly, just-in-time execution.

Assuming SPJ members likewise live by deadlines, here are some to add to your 2020 calendar now:

EIJ2020 invades D.C. in September.

Excellence in Journalism 2020. — Washington, D.C., in September?!? Why wouldn’t you want to be there? Planning, a year-round endeavor, is already underway for a great EIJ. Bookmark the site and watch as it fills with everything you’ll need to be up to speed. A key date: Ideas for super sessions, workshops and breakout sessions are due Jan. 19. All ideas are welcome – but remember the best ones win. We expect more than 150 pitches and take about a third of those. For best results, make sure your proposal is on-point and lively, and your guests confirmed. Questions? Review all the ins and outs on the Call for Programs page.

Mark of Excellence 2019. — Collegiate journalists, time to get busy! Pull together links to your best work of 2019 – whether for college news orgs or off-campus internships – and enter before midnight on Jan. 14. If selected as a finalist or first-place winner, you’ll be honored at your regional conference. First-place finishers then have a chance for national recognition. Tip I’ve shared before, that bears repeating: Ask your school to pay for entries. Students at my university – Miami of Ohio – began winning once we found a way to cover one entry per student.

EIJ News. — Another deadline for students. Dying to get to EIJ in DC? Short of funds? Apply for EIJ News, the site that covers all the action at the conference. If selected, you attend for free. Applications for the 10 EIJ News internships open April 1 and close at midnight May 24.

Sigma Delta Chi Awards. — SPJ’s most-prestigious annual contest for professional work opened Nov. 25 and closes at 4 p.m. on Feb. 18. The SDX Awards, which date back to 1932, recognize the best of the best in print, radio, television, newsletters, art/graphics, online work and research. Winners – many of whom pick up Pulitzers and other prominent awards for their work – are recognized in June at one of my very favorite annual events. What could be more thrilling than feting a room full of journalists at the top of their game at the National Press Club in DC? Not much.

Year-end gift giving. You knew this was coming! No time like the present to give SPJ a year-end present. You’ll find four options on our giving page.

Want more? Review our other opportunities and fill your 2020 calendar with SPJ deadlines. Then join me in resolving to get ahead of deadlines in the coming year – and enter early and often!

Happy Holidays and Happy 2020 to all.

Defending the First Amendment and promoting open government are more crucial now than ever. Join SPJ's fight for the public’s right to know — either as an SPJ Supporter or a professional, student or retired journalist.

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