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News & Press: NABJ News

Preeminent Journalists to Be Recognized at Annual Ceremony

Monday, November 4, 2013   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Veronique Dodson
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Washington, D.C. (November 2, 2013) —The National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ) announces the 2014 Hall of Fame inductees. The eight will be honored at the 2014 Hall of Fame Induction and Reception, Thursday, January 16, at The Newseum in Washington, D.C.

Each year NABJ honors renowned African-American journalists who have made outstanding contributions to the industry. Since 1990, NABJ has inducted 55 distinguished journalists into the Association’s Hall of Fame.

"The Board received a stellar group of recommendations. We are privileged to bestow honors on such an elite group of journalists,” said NABJ President Bob Butler.

The NABJ Hall of Fame inductees are named by the Board of Directors based on recommendations from the Hall of Fame Committee, which is chaired by NABJ Founder Maureen Bunyan, Evening News Anchor, WJLA-TV.

Founder Bunyan is a 2014 inductee.

"The board had previously wanted to induct founder Bunyan into the Hall of Fame but she declined because she felt her being the chair was a conflict of interest," Butler said.

"But the board the felt the honor was long overdue and unanimously voted for her induction."

The 2014 inductees represent an all-star and diverse assembly of journalism professionals. They are:

Herb Boyd (print), Journalist, filmmaker, activist, teacher
Herb Boyd has authored or edited 22 books, including the recent Civil Rights: Yesterday & Today. His book Baldwin's Harlem was finalist for a 2009 NAACP Image Award. In 1995, with Robert Allen, he received an American Book Award for Brotherman--The Odyssey of Black Men in America. We Shall Overcome, a media-fusion book with narration by Ossie Davis and Ruby Dee, is used in classrooms around the world, as is his Autobiography of a People and The Harlem Reader.

Boyd credits his meeting Malcolm X in 1958 as inspiration: "[He] set me on the path to become the writer-activist I am, to try to live up to the very ennobling things that he represented.” Among the highlights of his journalism career was an invitation to fly on Air Force One with President Obama, whom he has interviewed several times.

 Ernest Dunbar (print) (posthumous), New York City pioneer journalist, editor, author (Mr. Dunbar died in 2011 at age 83.)
Ernest Dunbar was a globetrotting journalist who made his mark as the first black reporter at Look magazine in 1954. After graduate work in journalism at Northwestern, he became assistant editor at Look in 1958 and senior editor in 1959 and held that post until the magazine closed in 1971. Dunbar was one of the first black reporters at any mainstream national publication. The prolific writer also wrote and edited books, including The Black Expatriates: A Study of American Negroes in Exile (1968 book he edited), and Nigeria (1974). He also free-lanced for Reader’s Digest, New York Times Magazine, Redbook, and Saturday Review, and served as president of Black Perspectives, a 1960s New York group that predated the National Association of Black Journalists.

Jay Harris (print)
Jay T. Harris holds the Wallis Annenberg Chair in Journalism and Democracy at the Annenberg School for Communication at the University of Southern California where he joined the faculty in October 2002. Harris is one of three persons holding the rank of Presidential Professor at Santa Clara University where he also teaches. He also serves as the founding director of The Center for the Study of Journalism and Democracy.

From 1994 to 2001 Harris was chairman and publisher of the San Jose Mercury News. During his seven years as publisher the paper rose to national prominence for the quality of its journalism. The Columbia Journalism Review ranked it one of the ten best newspapers in the country. He also made the Mercury News a national pioneer in multi-cultural publishing, leading the drive to broaden and deepen the newspaper's service to a multi-lingual readership, and business community, in one of the nation's most diverse cities. During his years as publisher the newspaper posted record profits and built one of the industry's most diverse staff and management teams. The paper's newsroom was more than 30 percent minority. Women constituted more than half of the officers of the newspaper when he left his job as publisher.

Moses Newson (print)
A respected reporter from the civil rights era, Moses Newson risked his life covering some of the most notable events of the time. These events included the Emmett Till murder trial, school desegregation in Little Rock and the 1961 Freedom Rides.

Newson attended Storer College in Harpers Ferry, W.Va., and then transferred to Lincoln University in Jefferson City, Mo., where he graduated with a bachelor’s degree in journalism.  In 1952 Newson’s first job as a reporter came at the Tri-State Defender in Memphis.  Newson left the Tri-State Defender for the Baltimore Afro-American, where he would be a reporter, city editor and ultimately executive editor for the final 10 of his 21 years at the newspaper. Newsom later left journalism to become a public affairs specialist for what was to become the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. After working for the government for 17 years, Newson retired at age 68. He was inducted into the Maryland-Delaware-District of Columbia Press Association in 2008.

Zelda "Jackie" Ormes (cartoons) (posthumous) (1911 – 1985)
Zelda Jackie Ormes was born Zelda Jackson in Pittsburgh. She was an African-American newspaper writer and cartoonist. She began her journalism career as a sports writer for the Pittsburgh Courier in 1938 covering the John Henry Louis & Joe Lewis heavyweight boxing match. On May 1, 1937, Ormes created her earliest cartoon. It was an action, romance, and soap opera comic featuring a Black heroine named Torchy Brown. Ormes modeled some cartoon characters after herself as intelligent, beautifully dressed and coiffed females, appearing and speaking out in ways that defied stereotyped images of blacks in the mainstream press.

In 1942, Ormes went to work for the Chicago Defender in a non-artistic position. Ormes was celebrated in Chicago's black social and fashion circles. She was also on the board of directors of the DuSable Museum of African-American History and Art. Ormes’ strips were syndicated in Black newspapers across the country, making her the only nationally syndicated Black woman cartoonist until the 1990s.

Bernard Shaw (Bernie) (broadcasting), retired from CNN in 2001 after being the face of the cable network since its inception in 1980. During that time, Shaw commanded the anchor desk and boldly steered the national conversation even when taking on positions of adversity.   He is also remembered for his reporting on the 1991 Gulf War. With cruise missiles flying by, Shaw and two of his fellow correspondents delivered information while sheltering under a desk in Baghdad.

Shaw moderated the October 2000 vice-presidential debate between Dick Cheney and Joe Lieberman. From 1992 until his retirement, Shaw anchored CNN’s Inside Politics. The venerable anchorman began his career in Chicago at WNUS TV, and then later joined CBS News and ABC news, becoming its Capitol Hill Senior Correspondent.

Lee Thornton (broadcasting) (education) (posthumous)
In 1977, Frances Lee Thornton became the first African-American woman to cover the White House regularly for CBS, and later taught journalism and was an administrator at the University of Maryland. Dr. Thornton, whose degree was in radio, television and film studies, began her career in academia before entering broadcast journalism in the early 1970s. She joined CBS News in 1974 and, from 1977 to 1981, covered the Carter White House. She began teaching journalism at Howard University in the 1980s and took a sabbatical in the early 1990s to produce public affairs shows at CNN, including "Both Sides with Jesse Jackson.” In 1997, she joined the University of Maryland’s College of Journalism as the first holder of the Richard Eaton Chair in Broadcast Journalism. She created, wrote, produced and hosted "Front and Center,” a show that aired on the school’s cable station, UMTV.

She was interim dean of the journalism school in 2008-09 and later served as interim associate provost for equity and diversity at the University. After retiring in 2011, she returned to work at the graduate school’s Ombuds office, which handles confidential consultation and informal resolution of problems that might arise between students and faculty. Shortly before her death, she endowed a graduate fellowship at the university.

Maureen Bunyan (broadcasting)
Maureen Bunyan is a veteran television news broadcaster and a primary anchor for ABC 7. Named a "Washingtonian of the Year" in 1992, Ms. Bunyan has an extensive record of service to the community. She is a founder and board member of the International Women’s Media Foundation, which serves women in the media in 100 countries. She is a founder of the National Association of Black Journalists. She also serves on the National Advisory Board of the Casey Journalism Center on Children & Families; the Girl Scout Council of the Nation’s Capital Women’s Advisory Board, the Advisory Committee of Women in Film & Video and is a board member of Women of Washington. She has been awarded seven local Emmys and the "Ted Yates Award," given by the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences to Washington, DC news broadcasters who are leaders in the profession. She was named "Journalist of the Year" by the National Association of Black Journalists in 1990. She received the annual "Immigrant Achievement Award" from the American Immigration Law Foundation in 2002.

Ms. Bunyan attended the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Columbia University School of Journalism and holds a Master's Degree from Harvard University Graduate School of Education. She was born in Aruba and grew up in Southeastern Wisconsin. She is of Guyanese descent.

Click HERE to purchase tickets.

An advocacy group established in 1975 in Washington, D.C., NABJ is the largest organization for journalists of color in the nation, and provides career development as well as educational and other support to its members worldwide. For more information, please visit


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