Funded by Google News Initiative for media executives of color

Google News Initiative(February 11, 2020) — Local Media Association today announced the winners of the Innovation Mission scholarships — funded by the Google News Initiative and LMA. The scholarships cover all costs to attend the upcoming New York City Innovation Mission on March 23-25, an immersive three-day study tour focused on consumer revenue and digital transformation.


The scholarship winners are:

  • Jehadu Abshiro, Digital Publisher, Advocate Media
  • Enrique Gomez, COO, Grupo AM
  • Penda Howell, Vice President, New York Amsterdam News
  • Ronnie Ramos, Executive Editor, The Daily Memphian
  • Chris Zoeller, Chief Revenue & Marketing Officer, The Post and Courier

The Innovation Mission includes visits to Google, Hearst, Digiday and more. 

“We are thrilled to once again offer these important professional development opportunities to media executives of color,” said Nancy Lane, president, Local Media Association. “We’re extremely grateful to the Google News Initiative for funding them.”

Scholarship applicants were asked to share what they hope to learn during the Innovation Mission: 

“I am eager to learn the evolving marketing strategies to support our digital subscription growth,” Zoeller said in her application. “I want to dig into how we can set up improved retention strategies around increasing the value of being a subscriber, such as special discounts, access to events and other benefits.”

“We are in the midst of completely revamping our digital products, and this would be an excellent opportunity to glean ideas from successful models that we could implement,” Abshiro said in her application. “I am also interested in the philanthropic partnership seminar since we are currently working on launching our nonprofit news arm for low-income neighborhoods located in news deserts serving minority communities in South and West Dallas.”

The next round of scholarships will open in a few weeks for the Branded Content Innovation Mission taking place in Chicago this June. The Branded Content Innovation Mission scholarships are sponsored by the Facebook Journalism Project