Thousands View NNPA’s First Virtual Convention

The first virtual convention in the 80-year history of the National Newspaper Publishers Association (NNPA) earned a thumbs-up from partners and sponsors.

The successful event’s website, vitualnnpa2020.com, generated more than 55,000 pageviews to conference attendees in only two days. Several hundred thousand additional impressions were generated by social media posts and livestreams on Facebook and YouTube.

“We share in your excitement and applaud your efforts in successfully executing the first virtual NNPA Annual Convention,” Lester Booker, of General Motors Communications, wrote in a congratulatory email to NNPA President and CEO Dr. Benjamin F. Chavis, Jr.

“Over the past two days, I’ve had the opportunity to view some of the convention and was impressed with its content, execution, and professionalism,” Booker continued, noting that GM officials continue to value and appreciate the company’s more than 50-year partnership with the Black Press of America.

Several other partners and sponsors joined General Motors, including Pfizer Rare Disease, RAI Services Company, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the NFL, Facebook Journalism Project, AARP, Black Hollywood Education Resource Center (BHERC), Hyundai, Wells Fargo, Molson Coors, Volkswagen, The United States Census, Comcast Universal, Compassion & Choices, API, Ascension, Nissan, and UAW.

“The NNPA overall is pleased with the impact, the reach and the engagement across the United States and throughout the world for our first virtual convention,” NNPA President and CEO Dr. Benjamin F. Chavis, Jr., stated.

“This represents a tremendous step forward for the Black Press of America. We note that during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Black Press of America has been able to overcome many of the obstacles that the pandemic continues to present. We plan to rebroadcast the virtual NNPA 2020 convention as soon as we conclude some post-production edits and additions.”

Chavis added that the NNPA remains most grateful to its corporate sponsors for helping to make the first virtual convention a success.

“We intend to let the world know that we appreciate our partners and sponsors and their support,” Chavis declared.

Claudette Perry, the NNPA’s executive administrator, stated that she’s breathing a sigh of relief that the convention was well-received by so many viewers.

“I was very delighted that many of the celebrities whose stories have been conveyed through the Black Press for decades showed their appreciation for our publishers with their congratulatory sentiments on our first virtual convention as well as their recognition of 193 years of the Black Press,” Perry said.

“To the NNPA in-house production team, I say thank you for all the great content and design you brought to the convention virtual space. You are awesome. I thank also the young people on the technology panel who had great advice for us ‘beyond millennials.’”

Perry continued:

“To our corporate partners and sponsors I extend my deepest appreciation for their support of our 2020 convention. The NNPA will continue showing its support for each of you, post-convention and throughout the year.”

Sparking the interests were several important topics and a host of celebrity guests, including livestream interviews and performances by Deniece Williams, Anthony Hamilton, Carlos Santana, Cindy Blackman Santana, Sandra “Salt” Denton, Boyz II Men’s Shawn Stockman, and journalist Jemele Hill.