Founded in 1994, UNITY was created to bring together minority journalists culminating in a convention every four years. The specific UNITY groups were the Asian American Journalists Association, the National Association of Hispanic Journalists, the Native American Journalists Association and the National Association of Black Journalists. Each group maintains its own annual conference.
However, the National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ) recently announced that it is withdrawing from UNITY due to ongoing concerns over its business model. NABJ had long urged UNITY to re-examine how it operates and how it shares the proceeds from the convention. In a statement the group was clear that the “NABJ board members concluded that as a business model, UNITY no longer is the most financially prudent for NABJ and its membership.”
With growing participation within black journalism professionals, this comes as a blow to UNITY. The last UNITY convention was in 2008 in Chicago. The next is scheduled to be held in Las Vegas in 2012. As a result of the split, NABJ is expected to hold its own convention next year.