New York—American Business Media officially kicked off its yearlong centennial celebration on Thursday with a pledge to help its members address myriad challenges, from monetizing rich data and developing vertical search tools to entering overseas marketers. ABM President-CEO Gordon Hughes II and Hugh Roome, president of Scholastic International and 2005-06 chairman of the ABM, outlined the association’s strategy for 2006 and beyond at a morning news conference. About 25 people attended the event at the office of Scholastic International. “This is an organization in transition,” said Roome. “We’re dealing with the potency of digital media, search will be a terribly important tool in the future, and government affairs and the effects of postal rates will be critical functions.” Roome also discussed plans to help ABM members penetrate international markets. The organization will sponsor trips to Brazil in March and to China in October, and a similar fact-finding mission to India is tentatively planned for early 2007.