Click Here to download this year’s program


A great story to tell is no guarantee journalists will tell it. Coverage requires a bit of timing and luck and, oftentimes, a good measure of planning and courtship.

We invite you to join the Arizona Chapter for the Asian American Journalists Association (AAJA) for a Media Access panel at this year’s Asian Corporate & Entrepreneur Leaders’ (ACEL) Dynamics of Leadership Conference

Learn how to take ownership of your personal narratives and define your message. Hear from newsroom decision-makers on how both elements can be shaped into effective story pitches. As they share their newsroom experiences, these Arizona journalists can trace the path from story pitches to reporter assignments to publication and broadcast.

Kris Vera-Phillips (Moderator) is a faculty associate and a Ph.D. student at the Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University. She teaches newscast-producing classes and a multimedia bootcamp for master’s students. She is also an Emmy Award-winning journalist with more than 14 years of experience producing news shows and special projects. Most recently, she worked as a multimedia producer for Capital Public Radio in Sacramento and the Senior News Producer for KPBS, San Diego’s NPR and PBS station. She serves as the Vice President of Journalism Programs for the Asian American Journalists Association. She mentors student journalists with AAJA Voices and PBS NewsHour’s Student Reporting Labs.

Luige del Puerto (Panelist) is the Publisher & Editor of Arizona News Service/Arizona Capitol Times. He is an award-winning journalist who manages Arizona News Service, which produces the premier political publications Arizona Capitol Times, Yellow Sheet Report, Legislative Report, and LOLA, a legislation tracking service. He organizes and hosts the popular Arizona Capitol Morning Scoop, a forum on statewide public policy issues. He also moderates other public forums, notably political debates. As publisher, he organizes company events, promotes services and publications, plans and executes financial strategies, and prepares annual budgets. He develops, maintains, and enhances relationships with groups to strategically support the mission and journalistic integrity of Arizona News Service. Luige also speaks at various forums and venues to educate the public about the political process and the role of the media in America’s grand experiment in democracy. He contributes regularly to local radio and political talk shows. A veteran reporter, Luige covered national security, notably military adventurism, in the Philippines, wrote about terrorism in Southeast Asia, and exposed corruption in the Philippine government. He is a subject matter expert in news writing and reporting. He still edits and writes stories, his first passion.

Kristin Couturier (Panelist) is the Senior Producer KTVK/KPHO in Phoenix. She is an award-winning journalist who oversees several evening newscasts at Arizona’s Family, which brings hyper-local and investigative stories to the people of Arizona. She has produced live television & events for the last decade, traveling to London to cover to Olympic Games, field producing the Super Bowl, overseeing multiple national elections, and producing the Fiesta Bowl Parade. In addition to working in television, Kristin is a Faculty Associate at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication, where she also received her master’s degree. She teaches Newscast Producing, sharing her passion for storytelling with the next generation of producers.

Chris Kline (Panelist) is the President and CEO of the Arizona Broadcasters Association. In the role, he leads all shared services, training/scholarship programs, and advocacy efforts for 200 radio and TV stations in Arizona with a focus on future-proofing local media for the digital future. Chris previously spent 12 years working at the ABC media brand in Phoenix, where he held roles ranging from reporter to digital director to news director. He also worked for The Arizona Republic newspaper and NBC station in Phoenix as well as at KTAR radio and CNN in Washington, DC. Chris serves on boards at Arizona State’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism, University of Arizona’s Journalism School, Arizona’s emergency communications committee, and the Rocky Mountain Chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences.

For more information about the event, please email to or visit


Early Bird Rate Before 9/24/2021
General Registration After 9/24/2021
WELCOME RECEPTION: (Fri, 10/22, 5:00-8:00pm | Keynote Speaker: Albert Shen, Verizon) $30.00 $45.00
LEADERSHIP AWARDS GALA: (Sat., 10/23, 5:00-8:30pm | Keynote Speaker: Sue Ann Hong, CAPAW) $125.00 $175.00
DAY PASS: Friday Conference (Fri., 10/22) Access to 12 Workshops/Seminars, Lunch & Reception $225.00 $325.00
DAY PASS: Sat. Conference (Sat., 7/23) Access to 10 Workshops/Seminars & Lunch & Conference Gala $275.00 $375.00
ALL-INCLUSIVE PASS: Best Deal!** (Friday, October 22 – Saturday, October, 23)   Full Access to Reception, Conference and Gala Event $399.00 $499.00
Diversity Career Expo (Friday, October 22 – Saturday, October, 23) Register for our career expo. to meet with many inclusive companies in Arizona

Group Discounts are Available, please contact us for more information.

All conference registrations must be purchased online with a credit or debit card. Once you purchase your ticket you will receive a confirmation from Your registration will be confirmed by an email sent to the same address after we receive your payment. Please ensure that your email address is correct when registering.

Attire: Business professional/Semi-formal.
All purchases are non-refundable. All payments must receive by 4 p.m. on October, 18 2021 to guarantee your seat.


Attending our ‪#‎ACEL2021 Conference, but need a hotel?

We have you covered when you reserve a room with DoubleTree Resort By Hilton Hotel Paradise Valley.

We have locked in that special pricing at $179/night!! This link will be available until September 20th, 2021. Make sure to book your room today!!!

Use this direct link provided by DoubleTree Resort By Hilton Hotel Paradise Valley:

Room Reservations Link

Or call +1 480-947-5400 and mention ACEL Conference special pricing.

Click here to become a member today!

For more information, please contact

ACEL’s mission is to be the proving ground for Asian American Professionals, forging leaders of tomorrow through professional development, cultural awareness, community service and mentorship. To learn more about our member benefits or if you would like to join the ACEL family, you can visit