About Alabama Media Professionals
Alabama Media Professionals is a 501(c)(6) organization governed by a member-elected executive committee. We serve the interests of professional communicators in various fields. Our members span careers, from news media, marketing and advertising to education and book writing. We welcome photographers, linguists, writers, social-media specialists, broadcast professionals and more. Many of our members work in more than one area of communications.
As communications fields change, our organization provides much-needed guidance through professional-development programs and opportunities to learn from each other. We promote high standards of performance and professionalism, particularly through our annual communications contest.
Some of our members are independent professionals who work on a freelance or contract basis. We advocate for, and provide assistance to, these professionals as well as traditionally employed communicators.
In 1959, a group of mostly Mobile-area women with news-related jobs formed an Alabama affiliate of the National Federation of Press Women. The goal of the NFPW was to advance women in news media as a national professional organization.
In the early days, women were excluded from covering crime, politics and similar journalism topics. They were relegated to what was called "the women's pages," which were similar to lifestyle sections of newspapers or lifestyle blogs. At the time, professional organizations for journalists did not allow women.
The Alabama group disbanded in 1961, just a year and a half after it formed. In 1980, interest in forming an NFPW affiliate returned to Alabama. The name "Alabama Media Women" was chosen. This time, the founding members were from all parts of the state. The members were news reporters, journalism professors, or worked in public relations, marketing or advertising. The organization held state conferences that included recreation and training.
By the 1990s, women in the news media gained more respect as true journalists. The needs and concerns of women media professionals came to match those of their men peers. In the 1990s our affiliate changed its name to "Alabama Media Professionals" to reflect embracing all genders in membership and programs. AMP attracted more freelance communications professionals who did work by contract. The group held monthly meetings in the Birmingham area instead of state conferences.