Journalism Awards in honor of Nancy Dickerson Whitehead
A pioneer broadcast journalist and an inspiration to a new generation of women reporters, Nancy Dickerson Whitehead reported on many critical social concerns, including the nation’s problems with drug and alcohol abuse. Her thoughtful analysis increased public understanding of these complex issues and reflected her own deep commitment to finding more effective answers. Nancy was a strong supporter and founding member of the Board of Drug Strategies, and we will always be grateful for her guidance.
Drug Strategies created these awards in 1999 to honor Nancy’s memory and to encourage excellence in reporting on drug and alcohol problems. For ten years, the awards were presented annually to print and broadcast journalists who demonstrated the highest standards of reporting on drug issues. Ten thousand dollars were awarded in each category. The awards were the first in the nation to recognize the importance of improving the quality of media coverage of substance abuse.
A distinguished Awards Committee provided overall guidance for the project. Members included Nancy’s friends and colleagues: Marie Brenner, Vanity Fair; Joan Ganz Cooney, Children’s Television Workshop; Walter Cronkite, Cronkite/Ward & Company; John Dickerson, journalist; Bill Moyers, Public Affairs TV; Peggy Noonan, Wall Street Journal; Diane Sawyer, ABC TV; Lesley Stahl, 60 Minutes; Mark Whitaker, Newsweek; and Katharine Graham, Washington Post, until her death in 2001.
The Awards Jury that selected each year’s winners included: Louise Henry Bryson, Lifetime Television; James Burke, Partnership for a Drug Free America; Jane Ciabattari, Journalist; Jeanmarie Condon, ABC Nightline; John Dickerson, Slate; Mary Anne Dolan, Editor; Marie Dyak, Entertainment Industries Council; David Earls, Tribeca Film Institute; Mathea Falco, Drug Strategies; James Hoge, Publisher, Foreign Affairs; Dr. David Lewis, Brown University; Dr. Robert B. Millman, Weill Medical College; Maureen Orth, contributing editor, Vanity Fair; Holly Peterson, contributing editor Newsweek; Jack Rosenthal, President New York Times Foundation; Orville Schell, former Dean, UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism; and Richard Wald, Columbia University.