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RTDNA’s Cavender Plans 2017 Retirement

RTDNA/F board of directors has appointed a search committee to locate its next executive director

Radio Television Digital News Association and Foundation Executive Director Mike Cavender will retire after the annual Excellence in Journalism conference in September 2017 and then help with the transition for his successor. Consequently, the RTDNA/F board of directors has appointed a search committee to locate Cavender’s successor, the organization announced in a press release this week.

“RTDNA has grown and thrived under Mike’s stewardship, and we look forward to his continued support during the coming year,” said Michigan Radio News Director and Board Chairman Vincent Duffy. “The board is committed to maintaining and expanding our programs and advocacy efforts supporting electronic journalists.”

Cavender has held the position since 2011 and has served on the RTDNA/F board for more than two decades. Under his fiscal management, the association regained financial stability and experienced new growth. During his tenure as executive director, RTDNA membership has grown by 52%, according to the release. This can be credited, in part, to the association’s first corporate membership program, which enables broadcast groups to enroll all its news managers for a group discount. Also during this period, RTDNA/F created a new permanent endowment fund, which is intended to help assure the foundation’s future in training and First Amendment protection programs.

RTDNA has also addressed issues such as the use of drones for news gathering, the availability to the public of police body camera footage, transparency in government, improvements in the Federal Freedom of Information Act and FCC regulatory issues impacting broadcast news coverage.