Four amazing journalists will join us for the day; both veterans and innovators, all accomplished and award-winning practitioners. Look at the outlets they worked for and you can get a sense of what they have in store for us.

Jacqui Banaszynski

Jacqui Banaszynski is a Pulitzer Prize winning reporter who now teaches and coaches other writers, from students to fellow top award winners. After a 30-year career as a newspaper reporter and editor, she now holds the Knight Chair in Editing at the Missouri School of Journalism and is an Editing Fellow at The Poynter Institute.

She spent 20 years as in the Upper Midwest and Pacific Northwest, and has traveled to all seven continents, including Antarctica. She has covered beauty pageants and popes, AIDS and the Olympics, dogsled expeditions and refugee camps — not to mention a few thousand planning commission and sewer board meetings. While at the St. Paul 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.

She was a finalist for the 1986 Pulitzer in international reporting for coverage of the Ethiopian famine, and won the national AP Sports Editors deadline writing contest with a story from the 1988 Summer Olympics. In 2008, she was named to the American Association of Sunday and Features Hall of Fame.

• Follow her on Twitter: @JacquiB.
• Read her Pulitzer winning series, AIDS in the Heartland.
• Get a feel for how a session with Jacqui feels like.

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Pat Walters

Pat Walters is a Peabody award-winning producer for the American public radio program, Radiolab. He also writes about science and culture for The New York Times Magazine and Popular Science and contributes to Pop Up Magazine (the world's first live magazine), Longshot Magazine (a 48-hour journalism experiment) and The Atavist (a multimedia magazine for the iPad).

He holds an MFA in creative writing from the University of Memphis, and he's a former National Geographic explorer.

Here are some stories Pat worked on for Radiolab:

Two on Five (reported, produced and narrated)
Brother versus Brother (reported, produced and narrated)
A Flock of Two (reported, produced and narrated)
Words That Change The World (produced)
The Bristlecone Pine (reported, produced and narrated)

• Follow him on Twitter: @patwalters.

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Alex Tizon

Alex Tizon is a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and faculty member at the University of Oregon. He is a former Seattle bureau chief for the Los Angeles Times, a former longtime staff writer for the Seattle Times, and a contributor to Newsweek, 60 Minutes and Sierra magazine. His first book, Big Little Man, to be published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, won a 2011 Lukas Prize work-in-progress award from Columbia University and the Nieman Foundation.

Tizon was a regular guest faculty at the Poynter Institute for ten years. His lectures at Harvard’s Nieman Narrative Journalism Conference were anthologized in the book, Telling True Stories (Plume, 2008). One of his essays, Love and Shame, was reprinted in the anthology Choosing To Emerge (HarperCollins, 1994). His first book, about race and manhood, is scheduled for release in the fall of 2012.

Read more of Alex’s work at his website,

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Laurie Hertzel

Laurie Hertzel is Senior Editor for books at the Minneapolis Star Tribune, where she has worked for 15 years. Her journalism and short fiction have appeared in newspapers, magazines and journals across the United States and in Finland. She has reported from the Soviet Union and Cuba. She was writer-in-residence at the James Thurber House in Columbus, Ohio, and was a fellow at Duke University.

Hertzel has spoken at conferences and workshops sponsored by Concordia College (Moorhead, Minn.), the Poynter Institute for Media Studies, Food Writers of America, the American Association of University Presses, the Asian American Journalism Association, the Associated Press, and many others, and served many times as faculty and speaker at the Nieman conferences on narrative editing and narrative writing at Harvard University. She has won national awards for her magazine writing, her newspaper journalism, and her short fiction.

She is the author of three books, including News to Me: Adventures of an Accidental Journalist, winner of a 2011 Minnesota Book Award.

• Read more of Laurie’s work at her website,
• Follow her on Twitter: @StribBooks.

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You might want to take a look at the complete schedule.