Sarah Stultz: The top of the top in journalism coverage

Published 8:45 pm Tuesday, May 10, 2022

Nose for News by Sarah Stultz

Monday was a big day for the world of journalism as the annual Pulitzer Prize winners were announced. 

As a journalist, it’s an exciting day to follow, to see what stories — and news organizations — led the pack, representing some of the strongest in the industry. 

The prizes are administered by Columbia University and include 15 journalism categories. They were established by Joseph Pulitzer, a Hungarian-American journalist and newspaper publisher, who left money to the university upon his death in 1911, according to the website. A portion of his bequest was used to found the School of Journalism in 1912 and establish the Pulitzer Prizes, which were first awarded in 1917.

As I read about the stories these individuals wrote, I often found myself daydreaming about what it would be like to win such a prestigious award. It’s the top of the top in the journalism profession. Most of the winners this year, if not all, were from large news organizations, though there have been small newspapers that have won the recognition in the past — a notable one recently was The Storm Lake Times, a family-run paper in Iowa, that won a Pulitzer for editorial writing. 

Here are the highlights of the award-winners this year:

Winning the Pulitzer Prize in public service journalism was The Washington Post, for its coverage of the Jan. 6 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol in an interactive series. 

I had actually come across this series after the event, and was grateful the newspaper allowed anyone, regardless of if they were a subscriber, to view it. It was informative, telling and captivating.

Marjorie Miller, administrator of the prizes, said the “compellingly told and vividly presented account” gave the public “a thorough and unflinching understanding of one of the nation’s darkest days,” according to an Associated Press article about the awards. 

Five Getty Images photographers also won one of the breaking news photo awards for photos from the same day. 

Other topics of note were the war in Afghanistan, the deadly condominium collapse in Florida, voter reform and voter suppression, health and other infrastructure. 

A special citation was also awarded to the journalists of Ukraine for their “courage, endurance and commitment” in covering the ongoing Russian invasion that began earlier this year. A similar citation was given to Afghan journalists.

I encourage you to take a moment to research these award-winning entries.

I am proud to be among them in the industry and for the people who risk their lives so we can all have critical information. 

Though the chances of winning a Pulitzer Prize are slim, it’s motivating to read the work of others.

A girl can always dream, right?

Sarah Stultz is the managing editor of the Tribune. Her column appears every Wednesday.