American Copy Editors Society

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American Copy Editors Society
Founded 1997
Founder Pam Robinson, Hank Glamann
Type Professional Association
Focus Advocacy and training for copy editors
Origins Developed from copy editors' meetings at American Society of News Editors (ASNE)
Area served
United States and Canada
Method Conferences, publications, online resources
Key people
Teresa Schmedding, president
Slogan Empowering Editors

The American Copy Editors Society, commonly known as ACES, is a professional not-for-profit association for copy editors at U.S. newspapers, magazines, Web sites and corporations.

As of 2012, the group offers:

  • a headline contest
  • member directories
  • a newsletter
  • scholarships (via the affiliated ACES Education Fund)
  • regional workshops
  • three-day annual conferences
  • a website that links to job listings and a discussion board

Executive committee[edit]

ACES was founded in 1997, by Pam Robinson, who also served as its first president, and Hank Glamann. Its inception followed work of the American Society of Newspaper Editors and meetings by copy editors in North Carolina and South Carolina.[1] It is currently led by society president Teresa Schmedding[2][3] of the Daily Herald of Arlington Heights, Ill. John McIntyre of The Baltimore Sun was its second president. Chris Wienandt of the Dallas Morning News was its third president.

It has an executive committee of 15 people, of whom five are officers: the president, vice president for conferences, vice president for membership, secretary and treasurer.[2] Any full member is eligible for elections. It also has an administrator, Carol DeMasters. Annual membership is $75 for full members and $40 for students.

In 2008, the board approved changes that allowed copy editors working outside traditional journalism organizations full membership with voting rights. As of 2014, the society has roughly 1,000 members.

Chapters and Awards[edit]

The group has several chapters: Southeast, Florida, Midwest, Ohio, Texas, Southern California and Northern California, as well as college affiliates at the University of Missouri, University of Nebraska-Lincoln and Pennsylvania State University.

The society also gives out two awards for copy editing, named after its founders: the Robinson Prize, which is awarded to the top editor of the year, and the Glamann Award, which honors contributions to the craft.

Mission statement[edit]

ACES' mission statement is as follows: "The American Copy Editors Society is a professional organization dedicated to improving the quality of journalism and the working lives of copy editors. Our main purpose is to educate our members and others in ways to raise the standards of editing and increase the standing of copy editors. We've created a community that's made copy editors more visible and given them a more constructive role in their careers. We hope you'll join us in continuing that effort."


ACES National Conferences
Year Location Att.
1997 Chapel Hill, N.C. 347
1998 Portland, Ore. 400
1999 Dallas 525
2000 Baltimore 425
2001 Long Beach, Calif. 440
2002 Louisville, Ky. 354
2003 Chicago 410
2004 Houston 390
2005 Hollywood 504
2006 Cleveland 420
2007 Miami 368
2008 Denver 297
2009 Minneapolis 256
2010 Philadelphia 331
2011 Phoenix 297
2012 New Orleans 354
2013 St. Louis 379
2014 Las Vegas 335
2015 Pittsburgh 483

The ACES national conference features the fundamentals of the craft and a primer for what's to come. Each year, copy desk executives, professionals, students and academics come together for three days of workshops and panel discussions. The annual event is a volunteer-run, nonprofit conference. Each year, more than 300 professionals and students attend the conference: copy editors for newspapers, magazines, websites, trade publications, book publishers, nonprofit agencies and corporations, as well as students, journalism professors, consultants and freelancers.

Its 2015 national conference will be in Pittsburgh in March 2015. Regional chapters also hold meetings on occasion.

The idea that led to the creation of ACES was nurtured during a series of three conferences about copy editing sponsored by the American Society of Newspaper Editors in 1995 and 1996.

When ACES was chartered in the spring of 1997, the top priority of the society's founders was to conduct their own national gathering, organized by copy editors, for copy editors. Four months later, the first ACES national conference took place at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. The participants, who numbered more than 340, felt the euphoria of shared experience, shared problems, shared goals and shared hopes.

ACES members receive discounts on registration costs, as do members of the Society for News Design.


  1. ^ Bill Mitchell, William G. Connolly (August 10, 2002). "Uncovering the Pride, Work of Copy Editors". Poynter Institute. Retrieved June 1, 2016. 
  2. ^ a b "Executive Committee". American Copy Editors Society. Retrieved June 1, 2016. 
  3. ^ "Volunteering". Teresa Schmedding. Retrieved June 1, 2016. 

External links[edit]