In nod to cartoonists, 2014 Polk Awards honor Garry Trudeau
NEW YORK (AP) — In a nod to a craft in the spotlight after the Paris terrorist attacks, Garry Trudeau will be the first cartoonist ever honored for his entire career’s work when the 2014 George Polk Awards in Journalism are given out in April.
Trudeau will join Jules Feiffer, a cartoonist cited for his work in 1961, and Django Gold, senior writer for The Onion, in a discussion about the role and impact of comics and satire in journalism after the attacks by Islamic extremists last month on the satirical weekly newspaper Charlie Hebdo and a Jewish grocery store that left 20 people dead, including three gunmen. Charlie Hebdo employees had faced death threats for its depiction of the Prophet Muhammad.
The discussion will be the subject of a seminar titled “Dangerous Lines: Cartoonists and Other Subversives” at Long Island University Brooklyn’s Kumble Theater for Performing Arts on April 9, a day before the awards are given out in Manhattan.
“Garry Trudeau will be the 33rd recipient of the George Polk Career Award and is the first cartoonist in the program’s history to be so honored. He has cut political pretension down to the size of his Doonesbury comic strip for 45 years,” according to a news release by Long Island University, which administers the contest and announced its annual awards Sunday.
The school said the 2014 Polk Awards winners include reporters who risked their lives last year to cover the Ebola epidemic, examine the rise of the Islamic State militant group and reveal secret ransoms paid for the release of hostages.
Among winners chosen from 558 nominees were reporters from The New York Times, The Miami Herald, The Post and Courier of Charleston, South Carolina, The Washington Post, The Chicago Sun-Times, The Arizona Republic and The Seattle Times.
The university said The Times’ Adam Nossiter, Norimitsu Onishi, Ben Solomon, Sheri Fink, Helene Cooper and Daniel Berehulak won in the health reporting category after risking “their own health and safety to provide American readers with their earliest and most reliable coverage of the scourge of the Ebola virus in West Africa.”
It said Carol Leonnig of The Washington Post will receive the award for national reporting for a series of exclusive reports on security lapses and misconduct at the U.S. Secret Service, while the local reporting award will go to Tim Novak, Chris Fusco and Carol Marin at The Chicago Sun-Times after their reporting on a decade-old homicide case led to a guilty plea by former Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley’s nephew.
The Times’ Rukmini Callimachi won for international reporting for her account of how European nations secretly paid ransoms to free hostages held by the Islamic State militant group.
Times reporters Michael Schwirtz and Michael Winerip shared the award for justice reporting with Miami Herald reporter Julie K. Brown. They exposed the abuse of inmates by guards at corrections and detention facilities.
The Polk Awards were created in 1949 in honor of CBS reporter George W. Polk, who was killed covering the Greek civil war.