Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism today announced the 2010 winners of the Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Awards for excellence in broadcast journalism. CBS News won two duPont Awards for political and economic reporting. Six local television stations will also be honored this year—the highest number of local stations to win in more than two decades. The first duPont Award for a Web-based production will go to MediaStorm, a multimedia production studio.
|The Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Award
“This outstanding group of duPont winners represents the very best in the profession of broadcast journalism,” said Ann Cooper, duPont Jury chair and coordinator of the broadcast department at the Journalism School. “We are pleased to honor so many reporters and producers from local markets this year who are doing important work with real impact.”
Selected by the duPont Jury, the award-winning news programs aired in the United States between July 1, 2008 and June 30, 2009. The honorees will be presented with silver duPont batons at a ceremony held at Columbia University on Thursday, Jan. 21, 2010.
For coverage of the 2008 presidential campaign, CBS News and Katie Couric won for her skillful interviews with former Republican vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin. NPR, and reporters Michele Norris and Steve Inskeep, were selected for their remarkable series about race and its role in the election. CBS News won a second duPont Award for an innovative multiplatform series about the impact of the recession on children.
Other winners include an eye-opening documentary from American RadioWorks about the legacy of U.S. detainee abuse in Iraq, an HBO documentary about the push to recruit new soldiers in the U.S. Army, and KHOU-TV Houston’s extensive reporting on widespread fraud and discrimination against women in the Texas National Guard. International reporting to be honored includes a report from FRONTLINE/World about Pakistan’s youth; PBS’ POV documentary about a judge investigating human rights abuses in Chile; and a multimedia presentation about children born of rape in Rwanda, produced by MediaStorm, the first duPont Web winner.
Local station winners also include WWL-TV New Orleans for a 50-part investigative series about government corruption in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina; WTVF-TV Nashville’s dogged reporting exposing corruption in the local courts; KMGH-TV Denver’s series exposing a crisis in the Denver Airport’s emergency response system; WCAX-TV Burlington’s unprecedented reporting on Vermont’s reliance on immigrant labor; and WSVN-TV Miami’s undercover reporting on legal drug dealing.
Gwen Ifill, the moderator and managing editor of PBS’ “Washington Week,” will host the awards ceremony on Thursday, Jan. 21, at Columbia University’s Low Memorial Library. Ifill and NBC News Chief Foreign Correspondent Richard Engel will present the duPont batons to the 14 awardees.
On Jan. 28, PBS will highlight this year’s duPont Award winners, interviewed by Maria Hinojosa, for the PBS special programTelling the Truth: The Best in Broadcast Journalism (check local listings). Telling the Truth, an annual feature on public television stations, includes excerpts of the winning duPont programs and explores how these reporters and producers develop leads, pursue their investigations, get access for critical interviews and sometimes risk their lives to get the story. The program is produced by WNET.org, and will air in New York on WNET on Jan. 31 at 10:00 p.m.
The Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Awards honoring excellence in broadcast journalism were established in 1942 by Jessie Ball duPont in memory of her husband, Alfred I. duPont. With his cousins, Mr. duPont transformed their gunpowder company into the chemical company E.I. duPont de Nemours. He later created a successful financial institution in Florida and was owner of a chain of small-town newspapers in Delaware.
The duPont Awards, administered since 1968 by Columbia University's Graduate School of Journalism, are considered to be the most prestigious broadcast journalism awards and the equivalent of the Pulitzer Prizes, which are also administered at the Journalism School.