Four new members of The Vidette Hall of Fame will be inducted in April.
The hall of fame class of 2014 includes Ed Pyne (1970), John Abrams (1990), Alex Reside (2010) and Rick Jones (retired Vidette general manager).
The four individuals will be officially inducted during a ceremony from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m., April 12, in the Circus Room of the Bone Student Center.
“These four have dedicated themselves to the overall betterment of The Vidette during their time at the newspaper and beyond,” said Vidette General Manager John Plevka. “We hope Vidette alums will join us as we salute them in April.”
Payne served as a reporter, sports editor and co-editor of the Vidette between 1968 and 1970. He and co-editor, Sara Schuler, led the Vidette during one of the most difficult semesters Illinois State has ever experienced – May 1970 – which included the Kent State shootings in Ohio, Black Panther shootings in Chicago and a standoff around the quad flagpole at Illinois State University.
Today Ed is the publisher and editor of The Normalite Newspaper Group. It began in 1985 when he bought The Normalite weekly paper from the family of its founder. Before that, Pyne was co-publisher of the Clifton Advocate in Iroquois County. At that time, he was the youngest publisher/owner in the state.
Abrams was at The Vidette in the mid-80s. In addition to serving as a reporter and news editor, he was instrumental in moving the newspaper from typewriters to computers. While he was still a student, The Vidette Publications Board hired him as a part-time civil service employee to serve as the newspaper’s first systems manager. Abrams rounded up several used computers and created a computer network. After The Vidette, he worked for McDonald’s Corporation and later became a Vice President of Cardinal Health. Today he is president of Shotfarm, LLC.
Reside was a photographer and photo editor at The Vidette from January 2007 until graduation in May 2010. He spent the summer of 2009 interning for Rolling Stone Magazine in New York. He returned to the city after completing his senior year at Illinois State University. He works as a freelance photographer and photo editor and has multiple online and print credits for Rolling Stone. He was an assistant online editor for US Weekly in December 2010. Since December 2011 he has worked for Time Warner where he is currently a photo editor for InStyle.com.
Prior to joining the ISU teaching staff in 1987, Jones was a professional journalist, having worked for the Cornbelt Press Publications. Jones spent three years at the Pontiac Daily Leader as a reporter and 13 at The Blade in Fairbury, where he was managing editor. He won numerous awards for outstanding reporting. In 1996 Jones succeeded Harry Thiel as The Vidette general manager, a position he held for 16 years prior to his retirement in May, 2012. Jones continues to teach news writing on a part-time basis at ISU.
Reservations for the April 12 banquet are $25 per person and should be made by March 26. Seating will be limited. Checks should be payable to The Vidette and mailed to: John Plevka, The Vidette, Illinois State University Box 0890, Normal, IL 61790-0890. If you have any questions, you may call Plevka at 309-438-7688.
Previous Vidette Hall of Fame inductees include:
2007 — Carl Hulse, Jeff Kraft, Kristen McQueary and Janelle Pettit.
2009 — Jay Blunk, Bill Gaspard, Todd Heisler, Heidi Voorhees, Harry Thiel and Mike Shelly.
2011 — Ben Cordani, Tina Haisman, Marc Lebovitz and Bill Mulvihill.