A Halifax reporter with African Nova Scotian roots has been appointed as the new Atlantic director of the Canadian Association of Black Journalists (CABJ).

The CABJ was founded in 1996. It’s a network of Black Canadian Journalists whose mission is to increase Black representation in Canadian newsrooms and management positions.

Amber Fryday is from Halifax and is a reporter for Global News. Fryday accepted the position with CABJ about three weeks ago.

“I’ve been doing a lot of conversing and engaging with Brian Daly, who is the former Atlantic Director [of CABJ]  and who’s been an incredible mentor,” Fryday said in an interview with the Halifax Examiner. “So, he’s kind of helping me get up and off the ground, if you will.”

Daly is a former TV news producer who teaches journalism at the University of King’s College. It was through her connection to Daly and the CABJ that Fryday said she was able to land her current position at Global.

“My first day in a newsroom was as an employee at Global News. Because of COVID-19 there weren’t many in-person internships,” Fryday said.

“I believe Rhonda [Brown, the supervising producer at Global Halifax] had reached out to Brian Daly, with the Canadian Association of Black Journalists at the time, and asked, ‘Is there anybody up and coming that I should have my radar on?’ and I think Brian said, ‘There’s this student at NSCC about to graduate.’ And the rest is history.”

Organizing J-School Noire

Fryday said her first goal in her new role will be to organize J-School Noire.

J-School Noire is a nationwide initiative aimed at getting Black students interested in careers in journalism and news media.

“We’re looking to engage with high school students who may be interested in eventually pursuing a career in journalism and offering them a one-day camp where they’ll have the opportunity to come and speak with journalists, broadcast journalists, and kind of learn the ropes of the day in the life of a journalist,” Fryday said.

The workshops take place every year during Black History Month in Halifax, Ottawa, the Greater Toronto Area, and in Western Canada.

Fryday was a virtual guest speaker for J-School Noire this past February.

“We’re going to try to do things a little differently this year,” Fryday said. “And hopefully we’re going to be able to recruit a couple people into the industry. I know that we have been successful in doing that in the past, which is not only great, but it’s tangible evidence that doing programs like this for youth really do work.”

A graphic that says Funded by Canada

Matthew Byard writes news, profiles, and stories of the Black Nova Scotia community. His reporting is funded by the Canadian government through its Local Journalism Initiative.

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