Contact: Kim Brockway For immediate use

212-854-5573 April 12, 1999

kkb18@columbia.edu

 

 

Columbia University Announces

83rd Annual Pulitzer Prizes

 

The 83rd annual Pulitzer Prizes in Journalism, Letters, Drama and Music, awarded on the recommendation of the Pulitzer Prize Board, were announced today by President George Rupp of Columbia University.

The winners in each category, along with the names of the finalists in the competition, follow:

A. PRIZES IN JOURNALISM

1. PUBLIC SERVICE

For a distinguished example of meritorious public service by a newspaper through the use of its journalistic resources, which may include editorials, cartoons, and photographs, as well as reporting, a gold medal.

Awarded to The Washington Post for its series that identified and analyzed patterns of reckless gunplay by city police officers who had little training or supervision.

Also nominated as finalists in this category were: The Boston Globe for the work of Dolores Kong and Robert Whitaker that disclosed how, for decades, psychiatric researchers callously performed drug experiments on mentally ill patients, and The Philadelphia Inquirer for its series that explained how local police routinely manipulated crime statistics to make the city appear safer.

2. BREAKING NEWS REPORTING

For a distinguished example of local reporting of breaking news, Five thousand dollars ($5,000).

Awarded to The Hartford Courant Staff for its clear and detailed coverage of a shooting rampage in which a state lottery worker killed four supervisors then himself.

Also nominated as finalists in this category were: The Jonesboro (AR) Sun Staff for its aggressive yet responsible coverage of a shooting at a local middle school in which two boys killed a teacher and four classmates and wounded 10 others, and The Miami Herald Staff for its coverage of a 12-year-old boy‚s electrocution at a county bus shelter and the breaking news developments in the subsequent investigation of the shelter‚s faulty wiring, which likely caused the boy‚s death.

3. INVESTIGATIVE REPORTING

For a distinguished example of investigative reporting by an individual or team, presented as a single article or series, Five thousand dollars ($5,000).

Awarded to The Miami Herald Staff for its detailed reporting that revealed pervasive voter fraud in a city mayoral election that was subsequently overturned.

Also nominated as finalists in this category were: Alix M. Freedman of The Wall Street Journal for her reporting that revealed how a controversial chemical sterilization technique was exported by American population control advocates and used on women in Third World countries, a disclosure that prompted significant reforms, and Fred Schulte and Jenni Bergal of the Fort Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel for their investigation of the hidden dangers of cosmetic surgery, a growing yet largely unregulated medical industry.

4. EXPLANATORY REPORTING

For a distinguished example of explanatory reporting that illuminates a significant and complex subject, demonstrating mastery of the subject, lucid writing and clear presentation, Five thousand dollars ($5,000).

Awarded to Richard Read of The Oregonian, Portland, for vividly illustrating the domestic impact of the Asian economic crisis by profiling the local industry that exports frozen french fries.

Also nominated as finalists in this category were: Tom Brune of The Seattle Times for his revealing analysis of the Washington state initiative on affirmative action that challenged accepted notions about practices that had been in place for three decades, and William Carlsen and Reynolds Holding of the San Francisco Chronicle for their compelling series chronicling the epidemic of health risks associated with the reckless use of unsafe hypodermic needles.

5. BEAT REPORTING

For a distinguished example of beat reporting, Five thousand dollars ($5,000).

Awarded to Chuck Philips and Michael A. Hiltzik of the Los Angeles Times for their stories on corruption in the entertainment industry, including a charity sham sponsored by the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences, illegal detoxification programs for wealthy celebrities, and a resurgence of radio payola.

Also nominated as finalists in this category were: Barton Gellman of The Washington Post for his penetrating coverage of the inner workings of the United Nations Special Commission as it sought to inspect and disarm Iraqi weapons, and Blair Kamin of the Chicago Tribune for his lucid coverage of city architecture, including an influential series supporting the development of Chicago‚s lakefront area. (Originally submitted in Criticism and returned by the Board to that category.)

6. NATIONAL REPORTING

For a distinguished example of reporting on national affairs, Five thousand dollars ($5,000).

Awarded to The New York Times Staff, and notably Jeff Gerth, for a series of articles that disclosed the corporate sale of American technology to China, with U.S. government approval despite national security risks, prompting investigations and significant changes in policy.

Also nominated as finalists in this category were: Chris Adams, Ellen Graham and Michael Moss of The Wall Street Journal for their reporting on the pitfalls faced by elderly Americans housed in commercial long-term facilities, and New Orleans Times-Picayune Staff for a revealing series on the destruction of housing and the threat to the environment posed by the Formosan termite.

7. INTERNATIONAL REPORTING

For a distinguished example of reporting on international affairs, including United Nations correspondence, Five thousand dollars ($5,000).

Awarded to The Wall Street Journal Staff for its in-depth, analytical coverage of the Russian financial crisis.

Also nominated as finalists in this category were: David Hoffman of The Washington Post for his gripping stories on the dangerous legacy of chemical and nuclear weapons in post-communist Russia, and The New York Times Staff for its comprehensive coverage of the bombings of American embassies in Africa, which revealed crucial lapses in intelligence and security.

8. FEATURE WRITING

For a distinguished example of feature writing giving prime consideration to high literary quality and originality, Five thousand dollars ($5,000).

Awarded to Angelo B. Henderson of The Wall Street Journal for his portrait of a druggist who is driven to violence by his encounters with armed robbery, illustrating the lasting effects of crime.

Also nominated as finalists in this category were: Tom Hallman Jr. of The Oregonian, Portland, for his unique profile of a man struggling to recover from a brain injury, and Eric L. Wee of The Washington Post for his moving account of a Washington lawyer whose collection of postcards helps to preserve his memories of a fleetingly happy childhood.

9. COMMENTARY

For distinguished commentary, Five thousand dollars ($5,000).

Awarded to Maureen Dowd of The New York Times for her fresh and insightful columns on the impact of President Clinton‚s affair with Monica Lewinsky.

Also nominated as finalists in this category were: Nat Hentoff of The Village Voice, a New York City weekly, for his passionate columns championing free expression and individual rights, and Donald Kaul of The Des Moines Register for his witty columns from Washington on politics and other national issues.

10. CRITICISM

For distinguished criticism, Five thousand dollars ($5,000).

Awarded to Blair Kamin of the Chicago Tribune for his lucid coverage of city architecture, including an influential series supporting the development of Chicago‚s lakefront area.

Nominated as finalists in this category were: Henry Allen of The Washington Post for his illuminating criticism of photography and painting, Gail Caldwell of The Boston Globe for her compelling observations on books and popular culture, and Justin Davidson of Newsday, Long Island, NY, for his fresh and vivid writing on classical music and its makers.

11. EDITORIAL WRITING

For distinguished editorial writing, the test of excellence being clearness of style, moral purpose, sound reasoning, and power to influence public opinion in what the writer conceives to be the right direction, Five thousand dollars ($5,000).

Awarded to the Editorial Board of the Daily News, New York, N.Y. for its effective campaign to rescue Harlem‚s Apollo Theatre from the financial mismanagement that threatened the landmark‚s survival.

Also nominated as finalists in this category were: Fred Hiatt of The Washington Post for his elegantly-written editorials urging America‚s continued commitment to international human rights issues, and Lawrence C. Levy of Newsday, Long Island, NY, for his campaign that was instrumental in bringing about reform of the inequities in Long Island‚s system of property assessment.

12. EDITORIAL CARTOONING

For a distinguished cartoon or portfolio of cartoons published during the year, characterized by originality, editorial effectiveness, quality of drawing and pictorial effect, Five thousand dollars ($5,000).

Awarded to David Horsey of the Seattle Post-Intelligencer.

Nominated as finalists in this category were: Clay Bennett of The Christian Science Monitor, and Rob Rogers of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

13. SPOT NEWS PHOTOGRAPHY

For a distinguished example of spot news photography in black and white or color, which may consist of a photograph or photographs, a sequence or an album, Five thousand dollars ($5,000).

Awarded to the Associated Press Photo Staff for its portfolio of images following the embassy bombings in Kenya and Tanzania that illustrates both the horror and the humanity triggered by the event.

Also nominated as finalists in this category were: Eugene (OR) Register-Guard Photo Staff for its coverage of a community recoiling then recovering from a brutal shooting spree at a local high school, and Mike Stocker of the Fort Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel for his consistently powerful photographs of the devastation caused by Hurricane Mitch in Central America.

14. FEATURE PHOTOGRAPHY

For a distinguished example of feature photography in black and white or color, which may consist of a photograph or photographs, a sequence or an album, Five thousand dollars ($5,000).

Awarded to the Associated Press Photo Staff for its striking collection of photographs of the key players and events stemming from President Clinton‚s affair with Monica Lewinsky and the ensuing impeachment hearings.

Also nominated as finalists in this category were: Daniel A. Anderson of The Orange County Register for his skillful and moving portraits of local children growing up in decaying residential motels, and Bill Greene of The Boston Globe for his inspirational images that trace the work of Donald Anderson, a descendent of slaves, who helps the residents of poor Southern communities assume civic responsibility and improve their lives.

B. LETTERS AND DRAMA PRIZES

1. FICTION

For distinguished fiction by an American author, preferably dealing with American life, Five thousand dollars ($5,000).

Awarded to "The Hours" by Michael Cunningham (Farrar, Straus and Giroux).

Also nominated as finalists in this category were: "Cloudsplitter" by Russell Banks (HarperFlamingo), and "The Poisonwood Bible" by Barbara Kingsolver (HarperFlamingo).

2. DRAMA

For a distinguished play by an American author, preferably original in its source and dealing with American life, Five thousand dollars ($5,000).

Awarded to "Wit" by Margaret Edson.

Also nominated as finalists in this category were: "Running Man" by Cornelius Eady and Diedre Murray, and "Side Man" by Warren Leight.

3. HISTORY

For a distinguished book upon the history of the United States, Five thousand dollars ($5,000).

Awarded to "Gotham: A History of New York City to 1898" by Edwin G. Burrows and Mike Wallace (Oxford University Press).

Also nominated as finalists in this category were: "This New Ocean: The Story of the First Space Age" by William E. Burrows (Random House), and "In A Barren Land: American Indian Dispossession and Survival" by Paula Mitchell Marks (William Morrow and Company, Inc.).

4. BIOGRAPHY

For a distinguished biography or autobiography by an American author, Five thousand dollars ($5,000).

Awarded to "Lindbergh" by A. Scott Berg (G. P. Putnam‚s Sons).

Also nominated as finalists in this category were: "At Home with the Marquis de Sade: A Life" by Francine du Plessix Gray (Simon & Schuster), and "A Beautiful Mind" by Sylvia Nasar (Simon & Schuster).

5. POETRY

For a distinguished volume of original verse by an American author, Five thousand dollars ($5,000).

Awarded to "Blizzard of One" by Mark Strand (Alfred A. Knopf).

Also nominated as finalists in this category were: "Mysteries of Small Houses" by Alice Notley (Penguin Poets), and "Going Fast" by Frederick Seidel (Farrar, Straus and Giroux).

6. GENERAL NON-FICTION

For a distinguished book of non-fiction by an American author that is not eligible for consideration in any other category, Five thousand dollars ($5,000).

Awarded to "Annals of the Former World" by John McPhee (Farrar, Straus and Giroux).

Also nominated as finalists in this category were: "Crime and Punishment in America" by Elliott Currie (Metropolitan Books), and "The Nurture Assumption: Why Children Turn Out the Way They Do" by Judith Rich Harris (Free Press).

 

C. PRIZE IN MUSIC

For distinguished musical composition of significant dimension by an American that has had its first performance in the United States during the year, Five thousand dollars ($5,000).

Awarded to "Concerto for Flute, Strings and Percussion" by Melinda Wagner, premiered on May 30, 1998 by the Westchester Philharmonic in Purchase, New York.

Also nominated as finalists in this category were: "Persistent Memory" by David Rakowski, premiered on March 7, 1998 by the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra at Carnegie Hall, and "Concerto for Orchestra" by Stanislav Skorwaczewski, premiered on November 19, 1998 by the Curtis Symphony at the Curtis Institute in Philadelphia.

 

SPECIAL CITATION

Bestowed posthumously on Edward Kennedy "Duke" Ellington, commemorating the centennial year of his birth, in recognition of his musical genius, which evoked aesthetically the principles of democracy through the medium of jazz and thus made an indelible contribution to art and culture.

 

The Pulitzer Prize Board made its recommendations when it met at Columbia on April 7 and 8 and passed them to President Rupp. It announced that the presentation of the awards would be made at a luncheon on May 24 at Columbia University.

Andrew Barnes was re-elected to membership on the board. Seymour Topping was re-elected administrator of the Prizes.

The members of the Pulitzer Prize Board are: President Rupp; Andrew Barnes, editor, president, and C.E.O., St. Petersburg Times; Louis D. Boccardi, president and chief executive officer, Associated Press; John S. Carroll, editor and senior vice president, The Baltimore Sun; John L. Dotson, Jr., president and publisher, Akron Beacon Journal; Jack Fuller, president, Tribune Publishing Company; Henry Louis Gates, Jr., W.E.B. DuBois Professor of Humanities, Harvard University; Tom Goldstein, dean, Graduate School of Journalism, Columbia University (ex-officio); Doris Kearns Goodwin, historian and biographer; William B. Ketter, chairman, journalism department, Boston University; Rena Pederson, vice president/editorial page editor, The Dallas Morning News; James V. Risser, director, John S. Knight Fellowships, Stanford University (co-chairman); Sandra Mims Rowe, editor, The Oregonian; Walter Rugaber, president and publisher, Roanoke (Va.) Times (co-chairman); William Safire, columnist, The New York Times; Edward Seaton, editor in chief, Manhattan (Kan.) Mercury; Paul Steiger, managing editor, The Wall Street Journal; Helen Vendler, Porter University Professor, Harvard University; Marilyn Yarbrough, professor of law, University of North Carolina, and Seymour Topping, administrator of the Prizes.

In any category in which board members have an interest due to the action of the various nominating juries, those members do not participate in the discussion and voting and leave the room until a decision is reached in the affected category. Similarly, members of nominating juries do not participate in the discussion of or voting on entries in which they have an interest.

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