Meet the NSNC Vice President

Larry Cohen

            It was the author G.K. Chesterton who explained that “journalism largely consists in saying ‘Lord Jones is Dead’ to people who never knew Lord Jones was alive.”

            I chose to assume that Chesterton was writing about the “news” side of the business. Much of the columnist business is devoted to explaining why we should care poor Lord Jones died – whether we knew him or not.

            The columnist game can be lonely and idiosyncratic and hard to explain – which is the reason why many very smart people (many of whom are good writers) simply can’t do the columnist thing. Every week? Twice a week? Three days a week? Concise? Wise? Amusing? Wrenching? On deadline?
            The deep, dark, dirty little secret of NSNC is that it brings together the odd ducks of newspaper journalism. Whether from the “metro” side where they prowl the mean streets looking for outrage; or the op-ed side, where the “opinion” is a bit more detached; or from the feature folks and self-help writers who can explain a dill pickle, recommend a fashion statement, help fix the bathroom sink, or help balance a checkbook; or the army of freelance talent that can be funny or focused, depending on the audience; the columnists are a peculiar mix of reporting and artsy composing and marketing. With the addition of bloggers to the mix, NSNC is an asylum of sorts – poised to provide therapy and insights and education and friendship to its mysterious population.
            I’ve been president of several professional organizations, but I have honestly never seen the level of affection and friendships in a membership-based setting that we generate at NSNC.
            I was honored to be elected vice president this year. I can see Russia from my window and I promise to be vigilant in defending us from our enemies.
            With Ben Pollock as President, Luenna Kim as our executive director, and a remarkable team of enthusiastic, sophisticated board members, we should be able to face the challenges of the economy and the technology, without losing our inherent sense of fun and good will.
~ Larry Cohen
    NSNC Vice President
Larry Cohen is the new NSNC Vice President elected at the general membership meeting in Detroit. Cohen joined NSNC in 1996 and has experience in government and teaching as well as journalism. A columnist for the Hartford (Conn.) Courant and editorial board member for several years, Cohen relocated to Sanibel Island, Fla., where he continues to write for the Courant and other New England publications.
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