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Sword and Pen – Let’s Talk: Four MVJ Convention Interviews

By #MVJ2023, Podcast

by Lori King, host of Sword and Pen

The Sword & Pen podcast booth at the MVJ2023 Convention. Here, Lori is joined by podcast guest Juan Carpanzano. Photo courtesy of Russell Midori.

On this special episode of Sword and Pen, I had a wonderful opportunity to speak with four attendees during the 2023 MVJ Convention held at the New York Athletic Club on Oct. 5-7 in New York City. This was the first time the Sword and Pen podcast was recorded during the convention, and I couldn’t be more thrilled to have such diverse perspectives on the show.

As I sat at my remote podcast booth during the career fair, I cajoled unsuspecting guests to join me behind the mic. What made it more special was the background chatter of veterans, their spouses and those who support our MVJ mission as they met with media companies and journalism schools.

Dan Clare, DAV’s chief communications and outreach officer, pictured here at their booth at the MVJ2023 DAV Career Fair. Photo courtesy of Lori King.

First up at the mic was Dan Clare, a Marine Corps and Air National Guard veteran. He was a military public affairs officer for 17 years and is now the director of communications for DAV, Disabled American Veterans, who sponsored the MVJ Career Fair.

Dan talked about his experience as the burn pit whistleblower; the value of having veteran voices in the media; and about his hope that veterans found jobs in newsrooms during the career fair. Not only did Dan operate a booth for DAV at the career fair, but he also sat on the Shaping News Coverage of Disabilities panel.

NBC News producer Patrick Martin, right, joins the NBC News team for the MVJ2023 NBC Newsroom Tour. Photo courtesy of Lori King.

Next up was Patrick Martin, an army airborne infantry veteran from Charlotte, North Carolina. He graduated from Columbia University – Graduate School of Journalism – and is now a producer for the NBC News Health and Medical Unit. Patrick came to the convention to give a tour of the NBCUniversal Studio at 30 Rockefeller Plaza. He also sat on the NBC panel.

During the podcast he talked about how important it is to get veterans in newsrooms, and his role as an NBC producer.

Evgenia Vlasova enjoys the MVJ2023 Opening Reception. Photo courtesy of Tim Belizaire.

Evgenia Vlasova is a Brooklyn-based video producer, editor and educator. She has been teaching at the New York Film Academy for eight years. Evgenia is not a veteran, but she is a member of MVJ.

She spoke about being a broadcast journalist in her homeland of Russia before she came to the United States, and how the Russian media is government controlled. She is currently seeking her citizenship. She also talked about the power of storytelling.

Juan Carpanzano hails from Bogota, Colombia and lives in New York City. He is a marine veteran who spent five years with Combat Camera.

Juan Carpanzano takes photos during a panel. Photo by Lori King

Juan Carpanzano takes photos during a panel. Photo courtesy of Lori King.

He is an advance media studies major at Fordham University, concentrating in photojournalism. He talked about how everyone has a voice, and offered this for advice: Push, push, push, and be confident in yourself!

Connect with the guests!

Dan Clare: ⁠X |

Patrick Martin: LinkedIn profile | NBC Health News

Evgenia Vlasova: Instagram

Juan Carpanzano: Instagram

Sword and Pen is a Military Veterans in Journalism production, and is brought to you monthly by host Lori King

Lori King: X ⁠⁠⁠@intro2pj⁠⁠⁠ | Instagram | Website

Got an idea for a podcast guest? Shoot me an email at ⁠⁠⁠[email protected]⁠⁠⁠

Sword and Pen – Let’s talk: Journalist Cyrus Norcross and the Navajo Nation

By #MVJ2023, Podcast

by Lori King, host of Sword and Pen

The MVJ Convention in NYC is just around the corner, and we are gearing up for a wonderful time of camaraderie, networking and fun!

On this episode of Sword and Pen, I spoke with army veteran and freelance journalist Cyrus Norcross, one of MVJ’s 2023 Top 10 Journalists of the Year. If you’re going to the convention you’ll get to meet him because he’ll be there!

Cyrus, an army ranger for six years before pursuing journalism, talks about his Navajo Nation heritage, his winning entry that earned him the journalist of the year award, and his passion for telling stories about the Indigenous community.

Cyrus, who now freelances for Indian Country Today, has been published in the Native News Online and the Navajo Times. He is a member of MVJ and the Indigenous Journalist Association.

Connect with Cyrus through his social media: LinkedIn | Website | Instagram

I also want to remind you that every Sword and Pen episode now includes the MVJ Bulletin, which highlights stories published in the MVJ Newsletter, which is emailed to all of our members at the end of each month.

I encourage you to read this month’s newsletter because there are important links regarding the Oct. 5-7 convention. Want to volunteer at the convention? That link is there!

If you have an idea for a future episode topic, please let me know at [email protected].

And don’t forget to follow the monthly Sword and Pen podcast, published in the MVJ Newsletter and linked on the website under the About page.

Military Veterans in Journalism To Offer Exclusive Newsroom Tours in New York

By #MVJ2023, News

Military Veterans in Journalism members are invited to attend one of two in-person newsroom tours during the MVJ 2023 convention this fall. 

On October 5, a select group of veterans will be treated to an exclusive newsroom tour of either the Gannett/USA Today NYC office or the Bloomberg NYC newsroom in the bustling heart of New York City, providing them with firsthand insight into the operations of these major news services and an opportunity to network with world-class journalists and newsroom leaders.

Those interested in attending the Gannett/USA Today tour may RSVP at the following link:

Members interested in attending the Bloomberg tour may RSVP at the following link:

The tour is provided through a partnership between MVJ and each of these media companies, and aims to improve veterans’ access to careers in news media. 

Gannett is one of the largest media companies in the United States, with a rich history spanning several decades. Renowned for its commitment to delivering trusted, fact-based news, Gannett operates a diverse portfolio of media outlets across the country. Its flagship publication, USA Today, is a widely recognized newspaper that covers a broad range of topics, including politics, business, sports, and entertainment. Throughout its various platforms, Gannett continuously emphasizes the significance of unbiased reporting and journalistic integrity.

“Gannett’s Military Forward Employee Resource Group is proud to sponsor this exclusive tour of the Gannett/USA TODAY NETWORK NYC newsroom,” said Military Forward co-lead and Talent Acquisition Manager Nick Capaz. “We’re committed to bringing together the community of veterans, active-duty members, families and allies to foster a better understanding of the service community and culture, as well as support the transition to civilian life and a new career. Gannett/USA TODAY NETWORK and Military Forward understand the value of hiring military veterans throughout our company and recognize that veterans bring a unique perspective, professional experience and diversity of thought that enhances our business and serves our community.”

Bloomberg is a global financial and media company that has become synonymous with business and economic news. With its headquarters situated in New York City, Bloomberg operates a 24-hour television network, Bloomberg TV, which provides in-depth coverage of financial markets and breaking news events worldwide. Moreover, the company’s news agency, Bloomberg News, is renowned for its commitment to delivering high-quality business journalism, catering to readers and viewers across the globe.

Participants will have the opportunity to witness the entire news production process, from researching and fact-checking stories to reporting and broadcasting them to the public. The tour will also include interactive sessions where veterans can engage with seasoned journalists, editors, and producers, gaining valuable insights to help them develop their careers.

The event not only serves as an eye-opening experience for the participating veterans but also underscores the commitment of both Gannett and Bloomberg to diversifying and strengthening the media landscape. As part of their continued efforts to support military veterans, these media giants have expressed their dedication to creating more opportunities and initiatives that empower veterans at any stage of their journalism careers. 


Sword and Pen – Let’s talk: The MVJ Convention and Mentorship Program

By #MVJ2023, Podcast

by Lori King, host of Sword and Pen

Did you know the Sword and Pen podcast, first aired in November 2019, was intended to be a limited-run series? The first host, retired Army intelligence officer Jonathan House, announced that intention during his inaugural introduction to Sebastian Junger, a journalist and documentarian.

Since that first episode, there have been three other hosts, Rich Dolan, Drew Lawrence and me. Drew and I still co-host it, and we plan on keeping this great show going because we believe in the learning environment this podcast provides through the voices of our guests.

With that in mind, stick around for the end of this podcast because you’ll be able to hear Jonathan begin that first show during a special showcase of five memorable quotes gathered from past guests. It’s just one way to honor the continuation of the Sword and Pen.

According to Russell Midori, MVJ president and co-founder, the Sword and Pen mission is to highlight the achievements and ongoing innovations of military veterans in the journalism profession and provide valuable news to our community.

We bring back Russell on this podcast to promote the MVJ 2023 Convention in New York City in October. We also chat with MVJ Mentorship Program manager Simone Doroski and mentorship alumnus Jordan Sartor-Francis about a powerful program that pairs our members with journalism experts in the field.

Listen as we >

  • talk about the what’s happening at the convention this year … and there’s a lot!
  • tout the skills mentees learn from their mentors, and how it’s landed them jobs and internships
  • explain how to sign up to the mentorship program and the convention

I am also excited to announce a new feature in the Sword and Pen that highlights stories in the MVJ Newsletter. The MVJ Bulletin will be a regular segment near the beginning of each podcast.

If you have an idea for a future episode topic, please let me know at [email protected].

And don’t forget to follow the Sword and Pen, published in the MVJ Newsletter and linked in the website under the About page, each month on Spotify so you don’t miss an episode.

Nominations Open for Top 10 Veterans in Journalism 2023

By #MVJ2023, News

Military Veterans in Journalism is proud to announce the launch of the Top 10 Veterans in Journalism Contest, a competition honoring the best work of military veteran journalists over the past year. The awardees will be honored at the MVJ2023 Convention, which brings together journalists, industry leaders, and media professionals from around the world.

Eligibility and Requirements

All veterans who have served in the armed forces are encouraged to submit their finished and published work, including self-nominations. Submissions should include the original publishing or release date, all contributors, and the organization under which it was published.

  • Only work done by a veteran of the armed forces is eligible. While pieces developed by a team are acceptable, journalists involved will only be eligible if they are veterans.
  • All submissions should be work that was completed and made publicly available within the past twelve (12) months.

The contest is open to all forms of media, including traditional print and broadcast, as well as emerging forms such as Augmented Reality, Virtual Reality, Interactive Data Visualization, and others.

Please provide a brief description of why the nominee should be recognized along with your submission. We’d like to know about both the person themselves and their amazing work!

The deadline for submissions is April 13, 2023 at 9:00 PM Eastern. You DO NOT have to be a member of MVJ to submit a piece of work, nor does the nominee; we do encourage you to join, however. Please note: you must be signed in on Google to submit.

Recognize fellow veterans in journalism and the value of their work!


The submissions will be scored on originality, newsworthiness, journalistic quality and diversity. Our panel of judges will apply their experience, editing standards and personal background to decide how well a piece does in each category. Judges will be looking for accurate and insightful storytelling that engages them as the audience. All pieces, regardless of media type, will be seen by the same panel of judges and scored in the same manner.

While every submission will be scored and selections for the list will be made, scores will not be released publicly. Outside of scoring, judges will be able to supply commentary if they wish, but not every piece will receive feedback.