API/NAA merger update

It was announced in January that the American Press Institute (API) is merging with the Newspaper Association of America (NAA) Foundation. Here’s the latest on that from a Romenesko reader:

I just wanted to make sure you were updated on the API/NAA merger.

Friday is the last working day for all current API employees. They’re all being laid off.

Some are being brought back for temp/project work, but otherwise, NAA is just taking all of API’s money and absorbing it into its foundation. It will also be selling the landmark building, which many, many of your readers are familiar with.

They’re all under non-disclosure agreements as part of their severance, as you can imagine, so I’m not really sure who you would reach out to.

From what I understand, NAA’s board would like, long-term, to convert all of NAA into the 501(c)3 structure and that the merger was part of that.

I passed this along to NAA’s Marina Hendricks and asked for comment a few hours ago. I’ll post her response when/if it comes in.

UPDATE: NAA president and CEO Caroline Little sends this statement:

API and the NAA Foundation have a number of overlapping directors and the boards contemplated this for some time, particularly because API was losing significant amounts of money over a period of years and the schoolhouse approach that so many of us were trained in had not been successful in recent years.

The boards approved the merger at the end of January. We have not made a determination on the future of the building and are considering our options.

It is NAA’s policy not to comment on personnel matters.

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