Rhode Island Press Association Executive Board
Co-President: Elyse Major, Providence Media
Elyse Major is editor-in-chief at Providence Media, publisher of Rhode Island's lifestyle magazines, including Providence Monthly, The Bay Magazine, SO Rhode Island, and Hey Rhody. In her role, she oversees the development of editorial content across all four monthly publications, websites, and social media. Additionally, she contributes writing to the magazines and serves as the face of the company.
Prior to joining, Major built a solid reputation around the state as a small business proponent and for her work as a communications consultant. An accomplished writer, she has contributed to various national shelter magazines, is the creator of the Tinkered Treasures craft book series, and co-authored a book of DIY home furnishings which has been translated into two languages. Major has been a presenter at the Country Living Fair in Rhinebeck, NY, and led workshops at libraries and venues like Blithewold Mansion, Gardens and Arboretum.
Major graduated from Rhode Island College. She lives in Smithfield with her husband and two sons. When not writing, she enjoys posting photos from jaunts to scenic places. Find her on Instagram and Twitter @elysepressmajor
Co-President: Ethan Shorey, The Valley Breeze
Ethan Shorey is the chief editor of The Valley Breeze Newspapers.
He began his career with The Breeze in the spring of 2006 and has been with the company ever since, rising through the ranks to become top editor in 2017. He has won numerous Rhode Island Press Association awards and also won first in New England for government reporting.
He has reported stories on every community The Breeze covers, including starting its Pawtucket edition in 2009, which he still reports for today.
Shorey delivers The Breeze to newsstands every Thursday, and believes that for modern journalism to flourish, no one can be above any job as we innovate and try new approaches. He operates with the
Shorey grew up reading The Sun Chronicle every day, which, along with having a grandfather, Erik Skaanning, who worked in newspapers for decades, helped inspire him from an early age to want to be a local news reporter.
A 2018 Rhode Island 40 Under Forty winner, Shorey lives in Cumberland, where he enjoys spending time with his family, grilling, woodworking, and yard games, among many other interests.
Find him on Twitter, @TheStoryShorey.
Vice President: Michael McDermott, The Providence Journal
Michael McDermott is managing editor at The Providence Journal. He came to The Journal in 2003 as a copy editor and became an online producer in 2006.
In 2009 he was promoted to sports editor, leading The Journal’s coverage of a Patriots Super Bowl championship, a Red Sox World Series championship, a Bruins Stanley Cup championship, a Celtics NBA Finals appearance, and a Providence College NCAA hockey championship.
He returned to the metro staff in early 2016 as assistant managing editor, focusing on crime and courts, politics and regional coverage, and added responsibility for The Journal’s arts and features coverage in October. He was named managing editor in 2017.
Michael was formerly a reporter at The Patriot Ledger, in Quincy, Massachusetts, and the editor of Caspian Business News, in Baku, Azerbaijan.
He graduated from Northeastern University, in Boston; and a member of the 2017 Leadership Rhode Island cohort.
He lives in Warwick with his wife and two sons. On Twitter: @mikemcdermott76
Treasurer: Sarah Francis, Rhode Island Monthly
Sarah Francis has been the editor of Rhode Island Monthly since 2005. During that time, she’s edited profiles on Patrick Kennedy and Jack Reed, as well as the annual Best of Rhode Island issue.
She’s also written for RIM about Providence’s police horses, car theft in Rhode Island, a URI bug expert, and how to make sushi. Sarah’s an alum of Philadephia magazine, where she once worked as a copy editor, and has been a freelance writer for Woman’s Day and Cosmopolitan (but not the sex stories, she points out).
Prior to that, she wrote obituaries for a small daily newspaper in Pennsylvania; she says it was “deadly.”
Secretary: Linda Lotridge Levin, Professor Emerita, URI
Linda Lotridge Levin is a professor emeritus of journalism at the University of Rhode Island where she served as the department chair from 2001 to 2011. She joined the faculty in 1983, retiring in 2012. She has been the secretary of the Rhode Island Press Association since 1985, except when she was its president for two terms. She currently is president of ACCESS/RI, a coalition of open government non-profits of which RIPA is a member. She is a former reporter and editor at The Providence Journal.
She is the author of four books, including The Making of FDR. Over the years, her work has appeared in newspapers and magazines including Playboy. She has received numerous grants and fellowships, several of which allowed her to work with journalists in the former Soviet Union and then in Russia.
Among the awards she has received, two of her favorites are the Yankee Quill Award from the New England Society of Newspaper Editors, which included her induction into the Academy of New England Journalists, and in 2011 her induction into the Rhode Island Journalism Hall of Fame.