Irina Nedeva takes over as chairperson of the management board of the Association of European Journalists – Bulgaria (AEJ-Bulgaria), replacing Kristina Hristova, who has been running the organization since it was founded six years ago. Hristova stepped down to become director of the Red House Center for Culture and Debate.
“As a journalist, I am aware of the competitive environment in which we are trying to adhere to our ideals of professional standards,” Nedeva said. “It is hard but inspirational to build a community of people who are otherwise opposed in many ways: financial, political, corporate, rating-wise.”
Nedeva is a Bulgarian journalist and documentary film maker with extensive experience in the public broadcast media, namely the Bulgarian National Radio (BNR) and the Bulgarian National Television (BNT). Currently, she is senior producer of “Current affairs”, editor, and host of morning shows of the Horizont Program of BNR. She has an M.A. in philosophy, with a specialization in cultural studies, from Sofia University and has done numerous specializations with Thomson Reuters in the University of Cardiff, RFI, SRI (Swiss Radio International), and Phillip Merrill Journalism School in the USA as part of the Fulbright Program. Her radio story, “The far right and migration in Europe”, is so far the only story produced by the Horizont Program that has participated in the prestigious European contest Prix Europa (in the Current Affairs category in 2014). Nedeva has participated in independent film, TV, and radio projects and has been involved in public debates.
“Today, [AEJ] has an observer status within the Media Committee of the Council of Europe and continues to unite journalists who believe in the potential of the profession to protect the freedom of information and the freedom of the media in Europe,” Nedeva said. “Each one of the members of the management board of AEJ-Bulgaria can serve as its chairperson. My colleagues’ decision to place me in this role points to the important mission of the Bulgarian public media. Being part of AEJ-Bulgaria’s efforts to create a professional media environment is both an honor and a responsibility. I hope we will grow in numbers and be strong together, regardless of the fact that we work for different media and come from different backgrounds, led by our desire to produce genuinely professional and meaningful journalism at a time of manipulation of the public opinion and the devaluation of facts.”
Kristina Hristova, for her part, said that the past six years have been among the most important years in her life so far because she was part of a community that had the capacity to change the world we live in.
“Now it is time for AEJ-Bulgaria to have as a chairperson a professional journalist who is familiar with Bulgarian journalists’ everyday life, work, and problems,” Hristova said. “That is why Irina Nedeva’s election as chairperson corresponds perfectly to AEJ-Bulgaria’s new needs, including being even closer to the journalistic community. I remain a member and adherent of the organization, and I will always support the cause I have been working for over the last six years. I wish the new chairperson and the management board success. Your success is important for all of us.”