June 28, 2011 / 2011 Adviser Academy / News

Walsworth, Lazo praise yearbooks at Academy opening

Written by Evan Blackwell, CJE

Advisers ranging from as far as Arizona and California all the way to New York converged on Kansas City Tuesday morning for the opening of Walsworth’s third annual Adviser Academy summer workshop at the downtown Hyatt Regency.

Company President Don Walsworth welcomed the visitors with a brief history of the family-owned company and a reassuring reminder that yearbooks remain relevant because they remain a “keepsake” that “lasts forever.”

To illustrate his point, Walsworth pointed to five different varieties of media-playing technology that have accumulated in his home over the years, three of which are now obsolete. But the yearbooks remain constant.

“It’s important for you sitting in this room to be the champion of yearbooks in your school,” said Walsworth.

Walsworth then introduced Betsy Lazo, the first-year adviser from the John D. O’Bryant School in Roxbury, Mass., who told the story of the one-year turn-around she and her staff were able to perform at O’Bryant.

Lazo shared her love of yearbooks from a young age, growing up near and then attending Boone High School in Orlando, Fla. According to Lazo, social media such as Facebook fits a different niche than yearbooks and shouldn’t serve as a replacement.

“Facebook will never be able to capture the magic, wonder and zeitgeist of a school year in the way a great yearbook staff can,” said Lazo.

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Evan Blackwell, CJE

Evan Blackwell, CJE, is the Marketing Automation Supervisor for Walsworth. He's been a writer, editor and web content specialist for Walsworth for the past 15+ years, and is the author of the Yearbook Suite's "The Art of the Interview" unit. Prior to joining Walsworth, Blackwell spent five years as an award-winning newspaper and magazine journalist. He holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Kansas.