PULLMAN, Wash. — The 24th annual Edward R. Murrow Symposium at Washington State University, titled “The Murrow Tradition at the Seattle Times,” will be presented at 7:30 p.m., April 23 at the Beasley Performing Arts Coliseum on the WSU campus. Admission to the symposium is free.
The symposium will feature a panel of four prize-winning reporters from the Seattle Times, moderated by Frank Blethen, Times publisher and CEO. The panel will include investigative reporters Deborah Nelson and Duff Wilson; Byron Acohido, a business reporter; and David Boardman, assistant managing editor.
Boardman edited the Times’ expose on abuses in the federal tribal-housing program, which won the 1997 Pulitzer Prize for investigative reporting. Previously, he directed coverage of the Exxon Valdez oil spill and its aftermath, which won the 1990 Pulitzer Prize for national reporting.
Nelson shared the 1997 Pulitzer Prize for investigative reporting for the series on tribal-housing. She joined the Seattle Times in 1995 after 20 years of investigating corruption, crime and blight in Chicago.
For the past 10 years, Acohido has focused on aviation safety. His coverage of safety issues of the Boeing 737 won the Pulitzer Prize for beat reporting. The five-part series described the interplay between lax government oversight and aggressive legal maneuvers on the part of Boeing during investigations of several 737 crashes.
Wilson is currently a Pulitzer Prize candidate for his investigative reporting of toxic wastes in fertilizer. These articles already have been awarded several prizes, including the Goldsmith Prize for Investigative Reporting, the John B. Oakes Award for Distinguished Environmental Journalism and the National Headliner Award.
Blethen will also be formally inducted into the Washington State Hall of Journalistic Achievement at an awards banquet preceding the symposium. Blethen was nominated for the award by several Murrow School faculty for his accomplishments and contributions to the journalism profession. These include a commitment to the pursuit of truth, diversity, family values and multiculturalism.
The hall was established in 1972 to honor individuals from wire services, radio, television, and weekly and daily newspapers who have made significant contributions in their professions in the state of Washington. Previous inductees to the Hall of Fame include Edward R. Murrow, William Cowles III and Clarance Blethen, Frank’s grandfather.
The first Murrow Award for International/Intercultural Communication will be presented at the symposium to Moriyoshi Saito, chairman and CEO of Mainichi Broadcasting in Tokyo, Japan. The award was established to recognize people or organizations that exemplify high standards in promoting intercultural/international understanding through communication.
In conjunction with the symposium, the Murrow School of Communication Advisory Board will hold meetings April 23-24. Advisory board members also will attend a breakfast with student organization leaders, speak to various classes across campus, and participate in a career fair on the 24th from 9 a.m.-noon in the Compton Union Building. All students are welcome to attend the career fair.
The annual Murrow Symposium honors the memory of pioneer broadcaster Edward R. Murrow, a 1930 WSU graduate who joined the Columbia Broadcasting System in 1935 and gained fame for his World War II broadcasts from London.