JOSEPH BERGER ELECTED PRESIDENT;
AILEEN JACOBSON NAMED EDITOR OF SILURIAN NEWS;
CHESTER HIGGINS JR. JOINS BOARD OF GOVERNORS
By Ben Patrusky
Joseph Berger, a consummate New York Times reporter, columnist and editor for more than three decades and the prolific author of several celebrated books, was elected the 73rd president of the Silurian Press Club on May 18 at the final lunch of the 2021 -2022 season, and the first to be held in-person since the onset of the Covid pandemic.
In assuming the presidency, Berger will relinquish editorship of Silurian News and pass the mantle to his newly elected successor as first vice president, Aileen Jacobson, an accomplished former Newsday writer. Rounding out the officer roster are Carol Lawson, re-elected as secretary, and Karen Bedrosian Richardson as treasurer.
All current members of the board of governors were also re-elected to renewable one-year terms, along with one notable new addition, Chester Higgins Jr., the recipient of the Silurians 2022 Lifetime Achievement Award, and the first photojournalist to grace the Silurian board roster.
Berger, as president, succeeds Michael Serrill, who won plaudits for the skill and resourcefulness with which he continued to lead the organization through such unprecedented times. Though Silurian monthly “lunches” went virtual as the pandemic raged, Serrill, with the help of colleagues, delivered an outstanding procession of speakers – including (one small silver lining of the pandemic) several preeminent out-of-towners who normally would not have been available to appear but for Zoom. Among the illustrious presenters were: Marty Baron, recently retired editor of the Washington Post; Michael Wolff, author of “Fire and Fury,” a best-selling inside look at the Trump administration; Mikhail Zygar, a Russian writer and filmmaker, in conversation with former New York Times correspondent James Brooke, sharing their expertise on Ukraine from remote locations; Peter Bergen, CNN national security analyst; and iconic caricaturist Ed Sorel.. Serrill also presided over the twice-postponed 2022 awards dinner honoring Higgins, the first in-person event of his presidential term.