Jan Schaffer, Executive Director of J-Lab

Director Joins Discussions of Women Entrepreneur Applications

Cox International Center Director Dr. Lee B. Becker joined six other members of the New Media Women Entrepreneurs Advisory Board at a meeting in Washington on June 3 to review more than 500 applications for support from the McCormick Foundation New Media Women Entreprenuers Initiative.

The winning four projects were announced on June 29 by Jan Schaffer, executive director of J-Lab: The Institute for Interactive Journalism at the School of Communication at American University, which runs the competition.

Each applicant will receive a $12,000 grant to carry out the project.

Other members of the Advisory Board are Vivian Vahlberg, president of Valhberg & Associates, a media consulting firm, Chhayal Mehta, a multimedia producer at the World Bank, Cindy Miller, a journalism leadership trainer, Janet Liao, program officer at the McCormick Foundation, Lisa Williams, founder and CEO of Placeblogger.com, and Maria Ivancin, a professor at the School of Communication at American University.

Dr. Becker has served on the Advisory Board since the program began three years ago.

Last year, the Board selected ChickRx, an online health resource targeted to women aged 18 to 27, Women's Community News Franchise, a proposal to develop an infrastructure for launching of hyperlocal news sites, and The Good Food Fight, focused on food and public policy issues that affect food choices and health.

"It is an honor to be on this advisory board," Dr. Becker said. "I learn a lot by reading the very applications, and I enjoy the give-and-take with the other members of the Advisory Board immensely."

The day-long meeting was held at the Palomar Hotel in Washington.