Date of this Version
Stacom, Don. "North American Transit and Transportation Press Association." (2014) University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Web.
In early 2014, at least 10 U.S.-based, topic-centered professional organizations existed for journalists covering specialty beats. Religion, education, health care, science, environment, business, military, California statehouse, criminal justice and even food writers had their own associations.
No such organization existed for journalists covering transportation, however.
That changed in May with the creation of the North American Transit and Transportation Press Association, an organization exclusively for professional transportation journalists working in the United States and Canada.
Established with the guidance of faculty at the College of Journalism and Mass Communications at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln, NATTPA is intended to promote a confidential exchange of information, leads and story ideas between transportation reporters. It also encourages professional networking and potentially can become a foundation for cooperative regional reporting ventures across state or even national boundaries.
NATTPA maintains a password-restricted set of message boards for members, and in December will introduce a roughly 1,000-entry searchable database of transportation resources.
The association began with an individual founder, and through an extensive recruitment campaign grew by November of 2014 to include 63 journalists representing news organizations in 30 states and four provinces. The goals for 2015 are to establish a board of directors with bylaws, operating procedures and a succession system for maintaining the website and database; to expand the transportation resource library and customized search engines; and to increase membership.