Fourth Annual Jingle with Journalists


It’s that time of year again.

The Houston Association of Hispanic Media Professionals, SPJ Houston Pro Chapter, Houston Association of Black Journalists, Houston Press Club, Asian American Journalists Association Texas Chapter, and EGMN Alumni are co-hosting the 4th Annual Jingle Bells with Journalists on Dec. 13.

The event will be held at Uforia Lounge, 5100 Southwest Freeway, Houston, Tx. 77056.

Come and celebrate the holidays by networking with the finest journalists in Houston. Entrance fee of $10 will be taken at the door for non-members.

You can find the Facebook event here.

And don’t forget about our upcoming meeting this Wednesday, December 7 at 6 pm at the Cafe Express River Oaks, 1422 West Gray, Houston, TX 77019.

We hope to see you all there!


SPJ Houston members elect 2016-17 board

The Houston chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists is pleased to announce the 2016-17 board of directors. Board members will serve through Sept. 30, 2017. Thank you to everyone who participated in the election.

President: Ruth Nasrullah

Vice president: Curt Mrowiec

Secretary:  Sara Samora

Treasurer: Jim Magill

Board members at large:  Tom Marsh, Ken Fountain

The board serves as the decision-making body of the chapter. See the bylaws for more information.

SPJ Houston to have board election in September

The Houston chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists will have an election for the chapter’s 2016-17 board of directors Sept. 1. The election is for the term beginning Oct. 1, 2016 and ending Sept. 30, 2017. The board serves as the decision-making body of the chapter. See the bylaws for a description of each board position.



  • Ruth Nasrullah
  • Sara Samora

Vice President

  • Curt Mrowiec
  • Jim Magill


  • Jim Magill


  • Jim Magill
  • Sara Samora


  • Tom Marsh
  • Ruth Nasrulla
  • Sara Samora
  • Ken Fountain


Only Houston Pro chapter members in good standing are eligible to vote. Voting is by email and will begin at 12:01 a.m. Sept. 1, 2016 and close at 11:59 p.m. Sept. 2, 2016. Please send votes to No special ballot is required; simply indicate your vote for each position, e.g. John Smith for President or President: John Smith.

Nominee bios



Ken FountainKen Fountain is a freelance journalist based in Houston. Among his coverage interests are law and the courts, media and culture, urbanism, politics, science and environmental issues. Fountain began his communications career as a U.S. Navy public affairs representative/journalist aboard an aircraft carrier based in San Diego. After leaving the Navy, he embarked on a long career in newspaper and online journalism at newspapers large and small in Southern California and Southeast Texas, serving as a reporter, copy editor and online producer. He also was the first Texas correspondent for a national legal news service and covered Houston-area stories as a stringer for an international wire service. Fountain is a current board member of the Houston chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists and a member of Investigative Reporters & Editors.  Previously, he has been a member of the Society of Environmental Journalists.


Jim MagillJim Magill has about 38 years of experience as a professional journalist, and for more than 20 of those years has been working for Gas Daily, first as a reporter and currently as senior associate, for Platts. In his current position, Magill covers news that impacts the North American natural gas market from the gas fields of western Wyoming and Colorado to the Louisiana, Alabama and Texas Gulf coasts. In addition, he has written extensively on criminal and civil legal cases impacting the gas industry, including those surrounding the fall of Enron and the scandal in the early years of this decade involving gas traders who reported false pricing information to Platts and other index publishers. Magill is married and has two adult children.


Tom MarshTom Marsh is a freelance journalist who previously held a variety of reporting, editorial, publishing and management positions with IHS, ODS-Petrodata and Offshore Data Services, covering the offshore oil and gas industry. In addition to being an incumbent member of the Houston Chapter SPJ board, he is a founding board member of the Houston Chapter SPJ Susanne M. Pagano Scholarship Fund. Tom is a firm believer in and strong supporter of the Society of Professional Journalists’ goals, particularly the society’s efforts to inspire and educate student journalists. If re-elected to the Houston Chapter board, his focus in the coming year will be to strengthen the financial position of the Pagano Scholarship Fund.


Curt MrowiecCurt Mrowiec is spot market editor at Platts covering North American natural gas markets. He received a bachelors of science degree in economics from The Ohio State University in 2007. Before starting at Platts, Curt has worked for a number of energy companies. He looks forward to helping the SPJ in the upcoming year by serving on subcommittees, increasing member participation and volunteering his time to other SPJ efforts. Curt served as vice president of the SPJ Houston chapter last year and was involved in organizing many successful events and programs.


Ruth NasrullahRuth Nasrullah is a freelance journalist specializing in religion, civil rights and politics. She has written for the Houston Chronicle, Religion News Service, Islamic Horizons, Azizah, Toastmaster and MuslimMatters. She is authoring a book on the experience of being religious in America. Nasrullah has a masters degree in journalism from Emerson College and a master of fine arts degree in creative nonfiction from Goucher College. She serves on a part-time basis as Communications Coordinator for the Houston chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations. She has served as both vice president and president of Houston SPJ and chaired the 2014 regional conference committee and currently serves on the chapter’s scholarship committee. Nasrullah looks forward to the opportunity to once again serve her Houston-area colleagues with a position on the Houston SPJ board, helping develop educational programming, cultural and social activities and networking opportunities.


Sara SamoraSara Samora is a Marine Corps veteran who recently graduated from the University of Houston this year with a dual degree of English literature and print journalism. Currently, she is a freelancer and a staff writer for El Gato Media Network (EGMN). Samora wants to serve on the SPJ board due to her love of journalism. Moreover, she wants to help build a connection between SPJ and student journalists in local colleges and universities. She believes it is important to build a network amongst journalists, to mentor as well as continue training to keep up with the ever-changing craft of telling a story. In 2014, she helped established the UH chapter of the Student Veterans of America, and served as the public relations chair for three semesters. The goal she feels in any organization, is to take care and help members reached their goals.

SPJ GOP Convention Watch Party/Happy Hour

Journalists and other politics junkies will be able to get your fix when the Houston Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists hosts a GOP Convention Watch Party/Happy Hour at the Spaghetti Warehouse, 901 Commerce St., beginning at 7 p.m. July 21.

Come and cheer or jeer as The Donald accepts the mantle as the official presidential candidate of the Republican Party.

There will be appetizers and the first drink of the evening (beer or wine only) will be free for all current member SPJ members or those who sign up for membership.

RSVP by July 20 to


The Spaghetti Warehouse is known as “The Most Haunted Building in Downtown Houston,” so it’s just the place for watching the convention and chasing down the ghosts of deleted emails or exorcising the demons of inappropriate Tweets, depending on your political preference.

For more information or to sign up for SPJ membership, contact Jim Magill at 713-658-3229.

Reel Media Group to host pop-up workshop in Dallas

Reel Media Group, a television broadcasting training agency, will be hosting a pop-up group demo reel workshop at the end of July for aspiring and professional reporters to prep for conference career fairs.

The Dallas workshop will take place July 30-31, guided by local on-air personalities in the market. This is a great opportunity to enhance and refine reels prior to meeting with recruiters and news directors. Space is limited.

SPJ Houston Seeks Nominations for 2016-17 board



SPJ Houston will be holding an annual election Sept. 1 to select the 2016-17 board members, including directors at large. We are now welcoming nominations. Please let us know by July 15 if you are nominating someone, which can include yourself.


We are looking for highly motivated people who are enthusiastic about journalism and want to promote SPJ’s mission in the Houston region (dedicated to the perpetuation of a free press as the cornerstone of our nation and our liberty). Chapter elections give us a chance to reflect on what activities, initiatives and educational programming we would like to enjoy and who we think should lead those efforts. We welcome veterans and newcomers alike to serve as officers and board members.


All members in good standing (dues paying) are eligible to serve on the board, to present nominations and to vote. For information on joining the organization, see here. To check if you are current on the $20 annual Houston chapter dues, please email us at


Officer positions are:

  • President
  • Vice President
  • Secretary
  • Treasurer


We also have open positions for directors at large. These directors, along with the officers, serve as the decision-making body of the chapter and meet at least quarterly. We can have a minimum of two and a maximum of eight board directors in addition to the four officers. Please see the bylaws for position descriptions of each board position.


SPJ Houston members should have received an email with instructions on how to submit nominations.


The eligible candidates’ names will be published here by July 25, or 30 days before the start of voting. Additional nominations can be made up to 14 days before the start of voting and will be published as they are received.


The voting begins Sept. 1, and the Sept. 2 deadline calls for votes by email by 11:59 p.m. CDT sent to or postmarked by Sept. 2 mailed to SPJ Houston, P.O. Box 131402, Houston, Texas 77219.


SPJ After Deadline Happy Hour is Tuesday

Join Houston Pro Chapter SPJ Tuesday night as we celebrate SPJ After Deadline in conjunction with SPJ chapters across the nation.

Unwind and network with your fellow journalists. This is one of many events that Society of Professional Journalists chapters are holding across the country Tuesday in order to give journalists a chance to meet others in the profession. The Houston celebration will be from 6:30-8:30 p.m. at The Refinery.

RSVP here.

Happy Hour

Our event is open to members and nonmembers alike, though we’d love for you to consider joining SPJ.

Who’s ready to ‪#‎PartyLikeAJournalist?