Eight Journalism Leaders to Receive Preeminent Journalism Award

Print this page

Columbia, Mo. (Sept. 27, 2006)Eight outstanding journalists and a leading journalism organization will receive one of the industry’s highest awards: the prestigious Missouri Honor Medal for Distinguished Service in Journalism.

Recipients of this year’s prize are:

  • Clifford G. Christians, an award-winning scholar of media ethics and communications.
  • Bill Kovach and Tom Rosenstiel and the Committee of Concerned Journalists, a Washington, D.C.-based organization dedicated to advancing the principles of the profession.
  • Chuck Curtis, chairman of Valentine Radford/Square One Advertising, Kansas City.
  • Reza, photojournalist and founder of AINA, a non-governmental organization struggling for the development of independent media and cultural expression in Afghanistan.
  • Karen Brown Dunlap, president of The Poynter Institute in St. Petersburg, Fla.
  • Zubeida Jaffer, an acclaimed South African journalist whose activism made her a key figure in the anti-Apartheid movement.
  • John Seigenthaler, founder of the Freedom Forum First Amendment Center.

Medalists will present Master Classes on topics related to their area of expertise to Missouri School of Journalism students and be recognized with the medal at an awards banquet on Wednesday, Nov. 1, at the Donald W. Reynolds Alumni Center on the University of Missouri-Columbia campus.

The School has awarded the Missouri Honor Medal for Distinguished Service in Journalism annually since 1930. Tom Brokaw, Christiane Amanpour of CNN, Sir Winston Churchill, Carol Loomis of Fortune magazine and Gordon Parks are among the distinguished journalists, advertising and public relations practitioners, business people, institutions and media organizations who have been recipients of this influential award.

Following are the 2006 medalists.

Clifford G. Christians
Clifford G. Christians

Clifford G. Christians is an award-winning scholar of media ethics and communications. He is the Charles H. Sandage Distinguished Professor and a Research Professor of Communications at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign where he holds joint appointments as a professor of journalism and a professor of media studies. Previously Dr. Christians served as director of UIUC’s Institute of Communications Research. He edits The Ellul Forum while also serving on the editorial boards of three-dozen academic journals. Dr. Christians is the former editor of Critical Studies in Media Communication. He won the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication’s Presidential Award for Distinguished Service to Journalism and Mass Communication Education and the Paul J. Deutschmann Award for Excellence in Research. Dr. Christians has published essays on various aspects of mass communication and professional ethics in several academic journals. He completed the third edition of Rivers and Schramm’s Responsibility in Mass Communication. Dr. Christians has co-authored numerous books including Jacques Ellul: Interpretive Essays, Teaching Ethics in Journalism Education, Good News: Social Ethics and the Press, Media Ethics: Cases and Moral Reasoning (now in its 7th edition), Communication Ethics and Universal Values, and the forthcoming Normative Theories of the Media. He has co-edited Moral Engagement in Public Life: Theorists for Contemporary Ethics.

Bill Kovach
Bill Kovach
Tom Rosenstiel
Tom Rosenstiel

The Committee of Concerned Journalists is a consortium of more than 7,000 reporters, editors, producers, publishers and academics concerned about the direction of and pressures facing American journalism. Created in June 1997, the group aims to clarify standards and principles in journalism by bringing journalists together to discuss their craft, its purpose and what sets it apart from other forms of communication. Since its inception, the organization has established a statement of concern created by professionals nationwide. The Committee conducted 21 public forums attended by more than 3,000 people nationwide, in-depth interviews with more than 100 journalists, editorial content studies and other critical research to identify the nine shared core principles of journalists. Bill Kovach, the Committee’s founding director and chairman, and Tom Rosenstiel, vice chairman, published the results of this study in the seminal book, The Elements of Journalism: What Newspeople Should Know and the Public Should Expect. Mr. Kovach and Mr. Rosenstiel also co-authored the Committee’s “Traveling Curriculum,” an ongoing education program that since 2001 has shared these core principles with more than 6,800 journalists in more than 120 print, broadcast and online newsrooms and with 26 organizations and educational institutions. The work of the Committee is being expanded to promote standards and engage the public in a common effort to assure the social and economic value of a journalism of verification.

Chuck Curtis
Chuck Curtis

Chuck Curtis is chairman of Valentine Radford/Square One Advertising. As chief executive officer of the Kansas City-based Valentine Radford agency, Mr. Curtis oversaw the merger with Square One Advertising to create a top agency that handles advertising, media placement and sales promotion for Dr Pepper, Pizza Hut, the Dallas Cowboys, Sprint Yellow Pages, Dillard’s and other leading brands and companies. Mr. Curtis handled the advertising for Texas Instruments’ introduction of hand-held calculators, digital watches and personal computers to their product line, and managed the introduction of 1,000 ATM’s into all 7-Eleven stores in Texas. In addition to his corporate achievements, Mr. Curtis has led significant community initiatives to improve and advance the Kansas City area. His ingenuity in advertising led to voter approval of a $50-million bond issue to redevelop the Kansas City Zoo. During his tenure as president of the State Ballet of Missouri the organization successfully eliminated its long-term debt and qualified for a $750,000 grant from the National Arts Stabilization Fund.

Reza
Reza

Reza Deghati, who only uses “Reza” as his name, is one of the best-known photojournalists in the world. He moved in 1981 from his native Iran to Paris, France, where he is still living today. Reza has used photographs as a weapon to fight injustice. He has been working for National Geographic magazine since 1991, and his work has been published in the world’s leading international magazines. Reza’s travels have taken him from the Bosphorus to the Great Wall of China, from Lebanon to Afghanistan, from Rwanda to Sarajevo. Reza shows with infinite humanity not only torments and upheavals, but also the arts, culture and traditions which are part of mankind. His friendship with Afghan Commander Ahmed Shah Massud, who was assassinated in 2001 for his resistance against the Taliban regime, in addition to Reza’s role as a consultant to the United Nations in Afghanistan and his cultural affinity to this country, led him to found AINA. Based in Kabul, Paris and Washington, AINA is a non-governmental organization struggling for the development of independent media and cultural expression in Afghanistan. National Geographic television has produced many films on Reza’s work, one of which won an Emmy in 2002 with a second film receiving a nomination. In November 2005, Reza was awarded the medal of the “Ordre National du Mérite,” the French award for distinguished services in a public or private capacity, by the President of the French Senate, Christian Poncelet. Reza is also a lecturer in major universities around the world.

Karen Brown Dunlap
Karen Brown Dunlap

Karen Brown Dunlap has devoted more than 30 years to the education of journalists and aspiring journalists. She is president at The Poynter Institute in St. Petersburg, Fla., a school dedicated to instruction for journalists and media leaders, and also serves as a trustee. Dr. Dunlap is a board member for the Newspaper Association of America Foundation, and also serves on the boards of the Eckerd Youth Alternatives, Inc. and the Florida Education Fund. She was a writer at the St. Petersburg Times, and serves as a member of the board of directors of the St. Petersburg Times Publishing Co. In addition to teaching in seminars around the country and abroad, Dr. Dunlap has taught journalism at Tennessee State University, the University of South Florida in Tampa, and continues teaching at Poynter. Dr. Dunlap has co-authored two books, The Effective Editor and The Editorial Eye, and was editor of the Institute’s Best Newspaper Writing series. She is the winner of the 2005 Gerald M. Sass Distinguished Award from the Association of Schools of Journalism and Mass Communication, as well as an honorary doctorate of humane letters from Eckerd College in St. Petersburg in 2006. Dr. Dunlap began her career as a reporter for the Nashville (Tenn.) Banner and later worked as a staff writer at the Macon (Ga.) News.

Zubeida Jaffer
Zubeida Jaffer Photo by Gisele Wulfsohn

Zubeida Jaffer is an acclaimed South African journalist whose activism has made her a key figure in the anti-Apartheid movement. During her early years as a reporter, she was detained for two months by South African authorities for exposing police killings and later arrested for editing community and trade union papers. Ms. Jaffer was a correspondent for Southern African and Canadian news agencies between 1990 and 1995, and became a member of the Independent Media Commission for South Africa’s first democratic elections in 1994. In 1997 she became founding editor of the Parliamentary Bureau for Independent Newspapers, the largest newspaper chain representing 14 major newspapers countrywide. Since 2003 she has held the position of political analyst for the Institute of Justice and Reconciliation and is also a judge in the Mondi Newspaper Journalism Awards, one of the premier journalism awards in South Africa. In 1994, she was the first South African woman to receive the Foreign Journalist Award from the National Association of Black Journalists and also earned an award from the New York Foreign Press Association for outstanding achievements in academics and journalism.

John Seigenthaler
John Seigenthaler

John Seigenthaler‘s lifelong commitment to freedom of speech issues has made him one of the leading national First Amendment advocates of our time. In 1991, Mr. Seigenthaler founded the First Amendment Center with the mission of starting a national dialogue and debate about freedom of expression values. The center, with offices at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tenn., and Arlington, Va., works to preserve and protect First Amendment freedoms through education and exploration of free-expression issues. Mr. Seigenthaler has spent much of his life as a journalist, serving as an award-winning reporter for The Tennessean in Nashville, where he also served as editor, publisher and chief executive officer. He is a former president of the American Society of Newspaper Editors and served for a decade as the founding editorial director of USA Today. Mr. Seigenthaler served as an administrative assistant to Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy in the U.S. Justice Department during the early 1960s, and was active in the civil rights movement through his work as chief negotiator with the governor of Alabama during the freedom rides.

Related Articles

Sep 27, 2006

Site Directory