Image from the National Association of Black Journalists www.nabjonline.org


The Rochester Association of Black Journalists is a local Rochester chapter under the umbrella of the National Association of Black Journalists headquartered at the University of Maryland-Washington Park. Click the learn more button to go to their website!


The Rochester Association of Black Journalists strives to help ensure diversity in area media and accurate, balanced coverage of communities of color while serving as a resource for both established and aspiring communicators of African descent.



RABJ brings together people of color who work in the media, or media-related jobs throughout the Rochester area. We provide professional support and development for journalist of color and awards scholarships to promising young black students who plan to pursue careers as journalists.


Membership and Organization

The Rochester Association of Black Journalists is a professional organization whose membership includes journalists from area print, TV, radio and online outlets. Also, public relations and communications professionals serve as members, along with educators and anyone else in a media or media-related profession. Student memberships are available for those who are training to begin journalism as a career.


Join RABJ for our monthly meetings at WXXI Public Broadcasting Council on 280 State St.

Click here to see our calendar. 


Meet the RABJ


Dave McCleary


Dave is a publisher, journalist, and president of the Minority Reporter Media Group. Since 2007, he has been covering news in the African American and Latino communities in the Rochester and Syracuse areas through his publications Minority Reporter, La Voz, and CNY Vision newspapers. We’re excited to welcome Dave as our new leader and look forward to the new direction of RABJ.

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April Clark

April Clark

Vice President

April Clark is Vice President of RABJ. Prior to her current role as host and reporter at WXXI News, she worked many years as a medical technician at Strong Emergency. Her passion for writing and storytelling led her to earn a degree in Journalism and Broadcast from SUNY Brockport. She has been an active member of NABJ since 2016.

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Shanique Byrd

Finance Director

Shanique is the founder and owner of Tocsin Magazine a national publication that speaks on a variety of topics including but not limited to politics, social justice, fashion, sports, and entertainment.

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Fred Tanksley


Fred is the owner of Studio147 which is a photography and videography company in Rochester, NY.

Rhonda Austin


Rhonda Austin is the Radio Operations Manager for the local PBS/NPR affiliate, WXXI Public Broadcasting. She oversees the daily operations for several of its award-winning radio services and has over thirty-three years of experience. She is a 2010 graduate of the African American Leadership Development Program through the United Way and has served on non-profit boards in Rochester. She recently became an entrepreneur and is the Chief Consultant of ARIA Virtual Consulting which specializes in office administrative tasks for the small business owner. In addition to that, she utilizes her radio background to coach community DJs and podcasters in the Rochester area.  


Recently, she served as RABJ's Secretary for over eight years helping the organization to win the covenant "Chapter of the Year in 2019". She now holds the official position as our Parliamentarian.

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Chib Onwunaka

Web Designer

Chib Onwunaka is the owner of Chib Designed IT LLC; a web design company dedicated to creating vibrant and modern websites that bring client needs to life. He has worked on multiple sites that range from non-profits, musicians, consultant groups, and more.

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Roles & Responsibilities