By Associated Press - Friday, February 10, 2017

PHILADELPHIA (AP) - The Pennsylvania Associated Press Managing Editors and the Pennsylvania Associated Press Broadcasters Association have merged.

The newly formed Pennsylvania Associated Press Media Editors will put the final touches on the merger in the weeks ahead, including combining bank accounts and planning a leadership succession before the annual meeting in May.

“The digital revolution continues to change the journalism industry in radical but meaningful ways,” said Thomas A. Barstow, former president of the newspaper group and the current president of the merged organization. “The combined organization will allow journalists with various backgrounds to share information about the best ways to convey information to readers and viewers.”

Barstow, who teaches journalism at Gettysburg College, said print journalists can learn from broadcasters - and vice versa - as all reporters, editors and photographers increasingly adopt social media and video in their storytelling.

The PAPME is composed of AP member newspapers and television and radio stations in Pennsylvania. The AP is an independent, not-for-profit cooperative based in New York City with news teams telling the world’s stories from more than 100 countries.

“Broadcasters and newspapers have more and more in common as the entire industry moves to a business model focused on digital platforms and storytelling in all formats,” said Sally Carpenter Hale, AP’s director of local markets based in Philadelphia. “This merger brings new energy to both groups.”

The new board initially will include members from both organizations and then be resized through attrition to reach 13 members. The board eventually will have six members from the broadcasting side, six from the traditionally print side and one from academia.

The president and vice president will alternate between print and broadcasting board members starting with the statewide media convention in the spring. It will be held May 19 in Lancaster as part of the annual Press Conference sponsored by the Pennsylvania Society of News Editors and Pennsylvania NewsMedia Association.

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