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Perfecting Personality Profiles: Online, Feb. 5-6

The Particulars

One-hour, live sessions
at either noon or 4 p.m. ET
each day on Feb. 5-6, 2014


Jacqui Banaszynski,
Knight Chair in Editing
at the University of Missouri

Registration is now closed

Photo by flickr user gmilldrum

Money and business are the main drivers in today’s world – as surely as politics and government were 50 years ago. Yet too often, business and economics coverage is overwhelmed with dry numbers, abstract trends and talking heads.

To make your beat coverage more accessible and engaging, you need to focus on people – those in positions of power or influence, and those who consume goods and services, work for wages and pay taxes.

Good profiles go beyond resumes and predictable accomplishments. Done well, they can reveal personality, character and motivation. They bring the people and the passion behind the numbers to life.

In the first hour of this lively two-part webinar, Pulitzer winner Jacqui Banaszynski will explore the characteristics of memorable and accurate profiles, as well as offer a range of profile approaches that can suit your purpose, publication and audience. In the second hour, on Feb. 6, she’ll dive more deeply into the reporting and writing techniques that can help any beat reporter pursue sparkling profiles.


 DAY 1: The Why, What and Who of Profiles

  • How personality profiles inform and elevate business beat coverage
  • How to identify good profile subjects
  • The core characteristics of good profiles
  • A range of profile types

DAY 2: The How of Profiles

  • Access and sourcing of profiles
  • Best practices of reporting for profiles
  • Effective writing structures for writing profiles
  • Alternative profile approaches and structures


  • You are a business news or other institutional beat reporter who wants to add engaging, personality-driven stories to your work
  • You are a reporter who wants to stretch your skills beyond news reports, and to learn the core techniques of narrative writing.
  • You frequently cover business leaders, company officials or entrepreneurs.
  • You are a freelance or magazine reporter who wants to write sparkling personality profiles.
  • You are an editor or journalism teacher who directs coverage and helps develop others’ reporting and writing skills.


Jacqui Banaszynski

Jacqui Banaszynski

Pulitzer Prize-winner Jacqui Banaszynski is the Knight Chair in Editing at the University of Missouri School of Journalism. She worked as a projects editor at The Oregonian in Portland and at the St. Paul Pioneer Press in Minnesota. She spent 18 years as a beat reporter and take-out writer at newspapers in the Northwest and the Midwest. While at the Pioneer Press, her series “AIDS in the Heartland” – an intimate look at the life and death of a gay farm couple – won the 1988 Pulitzer Prize in feature writing and a national Distinguished Service Award from the Society of Professional Journalists.

Her coverage of the African famine was a finalist for the 1986 Pulitzer Prize in international reporting. Her deadline story from the 1988 Summer Olympics won the national AP Sports Editors contest. She has written from Kurdistan and Antarctica, and has made Page One with dog obituaries and criminal investigations. She has edited several award-winning projects, including the work of The Oregonian’s Tom Hallman Jr., which won the 1997 ASNE Best Writing Award. Banaszynski, a native of a Wisconsin farm village, is a 1974 graduate of Marquette University.

She has taught journalism at the Poynter Institute, the National Writers Workshops, APME NewsTrain, the University of Kansas and the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul. She has served four times as a juror for the Pulitzer Prizes.

Banaszynski’s previous webinars for the Reynolds Center include:


Check out our Technology Help Page for connectivity requirements, helpful tips and an instructional video on how to access Reynolds Center webinars. You will receive an email with the URL and instructions on how to join the session. We will archive recordings of the sessions at http://bit.ly/self-guided-training.


This webinar is sponsored by the Donald W. Reynolds National Center for Business Journalism.

Those who attend three of the Reynolds Center’s training events are eligible to receive a Circle of Achievement certificate.

If you have any questions about the center’s training, please email Executive Director Linda Austin or call 602-496-9187.

In 2014, Calendar: Workshops, Webinars, Career tips, Training.

Comments (4)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Is there a cost for this seminar?

  2. Anonymous: No charge! Just register by clicking the green button above. We look forward to having you in the class.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Noon or at 4 p.m.: is it the same content?

  4. admin says:

    That means noon OR 4 p.m. Eastern Time. The webinar is offered twice on the same day. Available on whatever content you are on.

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