Call for Nominations: 2015 Studs Terkel Community Media Awards

The Studs Terkel Community Media Awards and Scholarship

Call for 2015 nominations — Deadline: Dec. 1, 2014

“I’m celebrated for celebrating the uncelebrated.”

~ Studs Terkel


WHO: You. We need you to nominate a phenomenal journalist.

WHAT: The Studs Terkel Community Media Award is named for legendary Chicago writer Studs Terkel. For 20 years, the Community Media Workshop has honored Chicago journalists—nearly 70 of them—whose work amplifies authentic community voices, thereby illuminating Chicago’s diverse neighborhoods and complex issues. This award was not just named for the great storyteller, but, until he died in 2009, Studs was integral in selecting the winners. Since then, the Workshop continues to honor his legacy by identifying journalists whose work embodies the Studs Terkel spirit of storytelling. But as we can’t be everywhere, we need your help.

WHEN: Please submit nominations via email by Dec. 1 to Maggie Walker (

  • The award recognizes a body of work, rather than a single article or series, and is open to journalists working in both traditional and new media, at any stage of his or her career.
  • The work must demonstrate quality journalism, authentic storytelling and be exemplary when it comes to Stud’s gift of giving voice to the voiceless.
  • Nominations must include the reporter’s name and media outlet, as well as at least three examples of his or her work. Please include a 100-word-or-less explanation of how the nominee’s reporting has given voice to Chicago’s diverse communities and made an impact on a community or cause.
  • Nominations will be evaluated by a committee of journalists, communicators, academics and nonprofit leaders.


WHERE: Awardees will be announced in January and honored on the evening of March 12, 2015.

QUESTIONS: Please contact Maggie Walker ( or Susy Schultz (@Susys,, or call the Community Media Workshop at 312-369-6400.

PAST WINNERS: 2014: Steve Bogira, Alejandro Escalona, Steve James & Gordon Quinn 2013: Megan Cottrell, Fernando Diaz, Dave Hoekstra, 2012: Mick Dumke, Maria Hinojosa, Chip Mitchell, 2011: Linda Lenz, Kari Lydersen, Antonio Olivo 2010: Kate Grossman, Natalie Moore, Progress Illinois 2009: Thom Clark, David Jackson, Alden Loury, Scott Simon 2008: Tom McNamee, Dawn Turner Trice, WRTE 90.5FM Radio Arte 2007: Mary Helt Gavin, Stephen Franklin, WRTO 1200 AM La Tremenda 2006: Mark Brown, Mary C. Johns & The Editorial Staff of Residents’ Journal, Renee Ferguson 2005: Tracy Baim, John Conroy, Mary Schmich, James Weinstein 2004: Alex Kotlowitz, Linda Lutton, Phil Ponce 2003: Rick Kogan, Jorge Mota, Tom Weinberg 2002: Shirley Jahad, Phil Kadner, Curtis Lawrence, WVON – AM 1450 2001: Cornelia Grumman, Martha Irvine, Salim Muwakkil 2000: Lee Bey, Ira Glass, Teresa Puente 1999: John Anderson, Hank DeZutter, Harry Porterfield, Laura Washington, John White 1998: Ben Hollis, Chinta Strausberg, Eric Zorn 1997: John McDermott, Mary Mitchell, Don Terry 1996: Carol Marin, Achy Obejas, Ray Suarez 1995: Vernon Jarrett, Ben Joravsky, Charles Nicodemus 1994: Cheryl Corley, David Moberg, M.W. Newman.

Dallas Morning News reporter visits Columbia College

Alfredo Corchado, reporter and author, described the day in 2007 when his life changed forever.

In July that year, a source called the Dallas Morning News reporter, who works in Mexico City, to say that the drug cartels had a list of several journalists they planned to assassinate. Corchado, the source said, should get out of Mexico.

“At that moment, the room started spinning, I almost dropped my phone,” Corchado told an audience of about 40 at Columbia College Chicago recently. “I felt sick.”

Corchado, much to the dismay of his family, did not leave but stayed to report the story and find out who was making the threats. “As journalists, the truth is our best weapon,” Corchado said.

The author of “Midnight in Mexico,” which is part memoir and part reporting on Mexico, was in Chicago to promote his book and discuss covering violence and being a journalists from two worlds — America and Mexico.

Corchado told the audience that he was born in Mexico but grew up in Texas the eldest of nine children. And in the book, Midnight in Mexico, published in May 2013, Corchado’s talks about his experiences as a reporter and his struggle to identify with his Mexican heritage versus beginning apart of American culture. He also told the audience that he outlines the stories he covered, such as: immigration, drug violence, foreign exchange as well as the missing women from Juarez and the drug cartels.

Corchado was introduced and later interviewed by his friend Jeff Kelly Lowenstein, of Columbia College Chicago’s journalism department.

The evening was sponsored by Community Media Workshop, the Columbia College Chicago Journalism Department, the Chicago Headline Club and the National Hispanic Journalist’s Columbia College chapter.

Susy Schultz wrote this article. Bianca Martinez and Ariel Parrella-Aureli, members of the National Hispanic Journalists club and journalism students at Columbia College Chicago, contributed reporting.





RSS Chicago is the World

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    It’s nearly night-time and the street is quiet. Business is good in the taqueria across the street, but there’s nobody in the panaderia. The day’s goods are sold. Working class Hermosa readies for the end of the day. Hermosa is the neighborhood where Puerto Ricans have gathered anew. They’ve moved out from Humboldt Park, leaving […]

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