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Communication & Media

News & Events

Panel of region’s top newspaper professionals to discuss ‘What News is Fit to Print?’


NEW PALTZ -- The Department of Communication and Media at the State University of New York at New Paltz will host a panel of six of the region’s top newspaper professionals as a part of the sixth annual Communication and Media Day beginning at 7 p.m. on Thursday, April 19, in the Coykendall Science Building auditorium. The event is free and open to the public.

The discussion will revolve around the theme, "What News is Fit to Print?", and will shed light on how newspaper publishers and editors decide what news to cover and what news not to cover.

Members of the distinguished panel include:
• Ira Fusfeld is publisher of the Daily Freeman and Sunday Freeman of Kingston since 1987, rising through the ranks from sports writer, to sports editor, to editor, to general manager and to publisher in a 37-year career with the newspaper. Fusfeld is also publisher of the Taconic Press weekly newspaper group in Millbrook; Las Noticias, a Spanish-language weekly newspaper in Kingston; and senior publisher of Journal Register Company’s Mid-Hudson cluster of newspapers and other publications. He is a 1970 graduate of SUNY New Paltz.
• Carl Aiello is founder and publisher of the Times Community Newspapers of the Hudson Valley, a group of weeklies based in Newburgh. In 1983 he launched the Wallkill Valley Times, a weekly newspaper serving the Orange County towns of Montgomery, Crawford and Wallkill, and the Ulster County towns of Shawangunk and Gardiner. In 1989, a second weekly, the
Mid Hudson Times, was established to serve the greater Newburgh area. A third weekly, the Southern Ulster Times, serving the Marlboro, Highland and Plattekill area, was launched in 2003.
• Meg McGuire is managing editor of the Times Herald-Record. Unlike almost everyone else in the business, she thinks that we're entering a new golden age of journalism. McGuire has written a column for the Danbury News-Times and has worked in various editorial positions at weeklies and dailies in Connecticut and New York.
• Stuart Shinske has been executive editor of the Poughkeepsie Journal and since December 2006, returning to the newspaper where he served in several newsroom roles from 1989-2001. He has been with Gannett Co., Inc. for 18 years. Before coming back to the Hudson Valley, he was executive editor of the Norwich (Conn.) Bulletin, where he started in May 2005. Previously, he was managing editor of the Courier-Post of Cherry Hill, N.J., from 2001-2005 and managing editor of the Poughkeepsie Journal from 1996-2001. At the Journal, Shinske also served as news editor and deputy city editor.
• Geddy Sveikauskas has been the publisher of Ulster Publishing for 30 years. Under his direction, the publishing company is responsible for six weekly newspapers, including the Woodstock, New Paltz, Saugerties and Kingston Times, and the Southern Ulster Pioneer and Highland Mid-Hudson Post, as well as
• Richard Wager is the retired publisher and chairman of the Poughkeepsie Journal. He started in the newspaper business in 1949 at age 10, delivering the Poughkeepsie New Yorker in Hyde Park. He served as the sports editor
for the weekly Hyde Park Townsman at age 13. Wager started at the Poughkeepsie Journal in 1960 as a copy editor and worked his way up through the ranks, serving as county reporter, city editor, managing editor, publisher and group vice president.

The panelists will be welcomed by college president Steven Poskanzer, and then panel moderator Bruno F. Battistoli, an alumnus of the New Paltz journalism program and chair of the Department of Communication and Media Advisory Board, will introduce the panelists and frame the discussion. Each panelist will speak briefly on the topic, and then there will be a question and answer period with members of the audience.

“This is an opportunity for these media professionals to ‘pull back the curtain’ of the news room, and give our guests the opportunity to look inside it – to get an idea of what forces and factors go into the editorial and publishing decisions they make,” said Battistoli, who is a doctoral candidate in Mass Communications at the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications, Syracuse University.

For more information on this event, visit