Philanthropist Doris Buffett is Virginia Press Women’s Newsmaker of the Year

October 3, 2010

Virginia Press Women has named noted philanthropist Doris Buffett of Fredericksburg its 2010 Newsmaker of the Year. She was honored yesterday at VPW’s fall conference in Hampton.Buffett, who spent part of her teenage years in Fredericksburg and now maintains a home here, is known for helping worthy causes through her Sunshine Lady Foundation. Much of her charity focuses on abused women and society’s forgotten people–the mentally ill and prisoners.Her efforts have gained national attention with the recent publication of her biography, “Giving It All Away: The Doris Buffett Story,” by Michael Zitz, a longtime Free Lance-Star reporter, now Germanna Community College’s director of community relations. Both Zitz and Buffett were speakers at the conference luncheon.In addition, Barbara Malone Crookshanks of Fredericksburg was presented the 2010 Communicator of Achievement award, VPW’s highest honor.Beginning her journalism career 60 years ago, Crookshanks helped pave the way for other women in the field. She served as editor of the West Virginia Farm News and later Fredericksburg Times magazine, a post she held for 25 years. She also was a reporter for the Charleston (W.Va) Gazette and The Free Lance-Star, as well as a makeup editor at Ladies’ Home Journal.Currently, Crookshanks specializes in writing historical articles for The Free Lance-Star and the Central Rappahannock Regional Library’s website. She and her daughter, Virginia Johnson, co-authored “Virginia Horse Racing: Triumphs of the Turf.”Crookshanks is president of the Ladies’ Memorial Association of Fredericksburg, which maintains the Fredericksburg Confederate Cemetery.Cathy Jett, assistant business editor of The Free Lance-Star, was voted VPW president for a two-year term, moving up from second vice president.Vera Pastore of Spotsylvania County, owner of Word Choreography LLC, was elected first vice president.Margaret Mock of Stafford County and Patricia LaLand of Orange County were re-appointed to the VPW board of directors.VPW, founded in 1958, is a statewide organization of professional journalists, journalism educators, freelance writers, public relations professionals and authors.–Gwen WoolfLink to original article: HereDate published: 10/3/2010