For­mer RTD ed­i­tor Kap­sidelis joins Vir­ginia Com­mu­ni­ca­tions Hall of Fame

Richmond Times-Dispatch - - NEWS - BY BILL LOHMANN Richmond Times-Dis­patch wlohmann@timesdis­ (804) 649-6639

A for­mer Richmond TimesDis­patch ed­i­tor, Thomas P. Kap­sidelis, was among eight me­dia pro­fes­sion­als in­ducted into the Vir­ginia Com­mu­ni­ca­tions Hall of Fame on Thurs­day.

This year’s cer­e­mony, planned for Thurs­day night at the Al­tria The­ater, was can­celed two weeks ago due to the COVID-19 pan­demic. A smaller event to honor the 2020 in­ductees is un­der con­sid­er­a­tion for some­time in the fall, said Mar­cus Mess­ner, in­terim di­rec­tor and pro­fes­sor of the Richard T. Robertson School of Me­dia and Cul­ture at Vir­ginia Com­mon­wealth Univer­sity, in a news re­lease.

The Robertson School has hosted the Hall of Fame since its in­cep­tion in 1986 and has in­ducted 180 com­mu­ni­ca­tions pro­fes­sion­als since then. The Hall of Fame ben­e­fits a schol­ar­ship fund for Robertson School stu­dents.

The Hall of Fame rec­og­nizes com­mu­ni­ca­tions pro­fes­sion­als with ex­cep­tional ca­reers in ad­ver­tis­ing, jour­nal­ism, pub­lic re­la­tions, new me­dia and other me­dia fields who have made out­stand­ing long-term con­tri­bu­tions in the field of com­mu­ni­ca­tions and were ei­ther born in Vir­ginia or be­came dis­tinc­tively iden­ti­fied with the state.

Kap­sidelis, 63, is a vet­eran Vir­ginia jour­nal­ist who was an ed­i­tor for 28 years at The TimesDis­patch be­fore ac­cept­ing a fel­low­ship in 2016 at Vir­ginia Hu­man­i­ties to work on a book that was pub­lished in 2019, “After Vir­ginia Tech: Guns, Safety, and Heal­ing in the Era of Mass Shoot­ings.” The book was pub­lished by the Univer­sity of Vir­ginia Press.

Kap­sidelis be­came in­ti­mately fa­mil­iar with the 2007 shoot­ing when he was dis­patched to Blacks­burg to or­ga­nize and over­see a team of re­porters pro­vid­ing cov­er­age for the com­ing days.

A na­tive of Peters­burg, Kap­sidelis pre­vi­ously was the Richmond bureau man­ager for United Press In­ter­na­tional and a re­porter with The State news­pa­per in Columbia, S.C. He is a vis­it­ing pro­fes­sor of jour­nal­ism at the Univer­sity of Richmond for the cur­rent aca­demic year and for­merly taught as an ad­junct in­struc­tor at the Robertson School.

This year’s in­ductees also in­clude:

Bar­bara Ciara, an­chor and man­ag­ing ed­i­tor of WTKR-TV News 3 in Hamp­ton Roads; Doug Cole­burn, re­tired ed­i­tor of the Black­stone Courier-Record; Brian Ellis, ex­ec­u­tive vice pres­i­dent at Padilla, who cur­rently leads its cri­sis and is­sues man­age­ment prac­tice; Bill Eure, who died in Jan­uary 2019, was a na­tive of Portsmouth who be­gan his broad­cast­ing ca­reer in the sales depart­ment of WAVY-AM/TV in Hamp­ton Roads and later be­gan the first African-Amer­i­can-pro­grammed FM sta­tion in the Richmond mar­ket, Magic 99, in 1981;

Kym Grin­nage, vice pres­i­dent and gen­eral man­ager of WWBT-TV NBC12 since 2011; Ca­bell Harris, founder of WORK Inc., a cre­ative brand­ing agency in Richmond; and Don­ald Lee, a cam­era­man and jour­nal­ist for CBS News’ “60 Min­utes” based in Wash­ing­ton, who be­gan his ca­reer at VCU, where he en­rolled in the newly formed broad­cast news cur­ricu­lum, and later worked at WWBTTV in Richmond.

Pre­vi­ous classes have in­cluded a num­ber of cur­rent and for­mer jour­nal­ists from the Richmond Times-Dis­patch and The Richmond News Leader, in­clud­ing:

Mike Allen, re­porter, TimesDis­patch; Bob Brown, se­nior photograph­er, Times-Dis­patch; D. Ten­nant Bryan, pub­lisher, Times-Dis­patch and News Leader; J. Stewart Bryan III, pub­lisher, Times-Dis­patch and News Leader; Vir­ginius Dab­ney, ed­i­tor, Times-Dis­patch; John F. Daf­fron, re­porter, Times-Dis­patch; Dou­glas Southall Free­man, ed­i­tor, News Leader; Guy Frid­dell, colum­nist, News Leader; Alf Goodykoont­z, ex­ec­u­tive ed­i­tor, Times-Dis­patch and News Leader; Michael Hardy, re­porter, Times-Dis­patch; Bob Jones Jr., photograph­er, Times-Dis­patch and News Leader; Over­ton

Jones, jour­nal­ist, Times-Dis­patch; James J. Kil­patrick, syn­di­cated colum­nist, News Leader; James H. La­timer, re­porter, Times-Dis­patch; John Leard, ex­ec­u­tive ed­i­tor, Times-Dis­patch and News Leader; Jef­frey K. MacNelly, car­toon­ist, News Leader; Charles McDow­ell, colum­nist, Times-Dis­patch; Bill McKel­way, re­porter, Times-Dis­patch; William H. Mill­saps Jr., sports ed­i­tor and ex­ec­u­tive ed­i­tor, TimesDis­patch; Roger Mudd, re­porter, News Leader; Joseph E. Net­tles, re­porter, Times-Dis­patch; Bernie Niemeier, a for­mer man­ager for Richmond News­pa­pers; R. Bev­erly Orn­dorff, science re­porter, Times-Dis­patch; Jeff E. Schapiro, po­lit­i­cal colum­nist, Times-Dis­patch; Louise Seals, man­ag­ing ed­i­tor, Times-Dis­patch; Thomas A. Sil­vestri, pub­lisher, TimesDis­patch; Ken Tom­lin­son, re­porter, Times-Dis­patch; Tyler Whit­ley, re­porter, Times-Dis­patch; and Gra­ham Woodlief, ex­ec­u­tive, Times-Dis­patch.


For­mer Richmond Times-Dis­patch ed­i­tor Thomas P. Kap­sidelis is the au­thor of “After Vir­ginia Tech: Guns, Safety, and Heal­ing in the Era of Mass Shoot­ings.”

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