Adapted from a University of Arizona press release.
TUCSON, Ariz. (Oct. 21) – Merrill College Knight Chair Dana Priest has been honored with the John Peter Zenger Award for Press Freedom by the University of Arizona.
Priest accepted the award Friday night during a gala event in Tucson.
A two-time Pulitzer Prize winner, Priest was honored for her work at the Washington Post exposing secret prisons and the poor treatment of wounded soldiers.
“Dana Priest epitomizes what journalism is all about – courage, truth-seeking, holding those in power accountable, and providing people the information they need to adequately self-govern,” said David Cuillier, director of the journalism school.
About the John Peter Zenger Award
Given by the University of Arizona since 1954, the award is named after John Peter and Anna Catherine Zenger and honors journalists who fight for freedom of the press and the people’s right to know.
Writing by email after being told of the award last May, Priest wrote, “Today is World Press Freedom Day, which makes me particularly grateful to be receiving this award from the UA School of Journalism.” She added, “The school’s award-winning work is an example of American journalism at its finest and a reminder of the power of investigative reporting to change lives.”
Past winners include Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein, Bill Moyers, Walter Cronkite and Associated Press foreign correspondent Kathy Gannon, who returned to reporting this year after being wounded in a 2014 attack in Afghanistan.
About Dana Priest
Priest won a 2006 Pulitzer for uncovering secret CIA prisons in Eastern Europe and a 2008 Pulitzer for reporting on deplorable conditions for veterans at the Walter Reed Medical Center in Washington. She also is a John S. and James L. Knight Chair in Public Affairs Journalism at the University of Maryland’s Philip Merrill College of Journalism.
A three-time Pulitzer finalist, Priest is an alumna of UC Santa Cruz and is the author of two best-selling books: “The Mission: Waging War and Keeping Peace with America’s Military” (2003), and “Top Secret America: The Rise of the National Security State” (2010). The first book was a Pulitzer finalist and is still used in military academies. The second, developed into a “Frontline” documentary, covered the buildup in top-secret intelligence organizations in the aftermath of Sept. 11.