Contact: Whitney Hale
"This year’s group of inductees is a cross-section of the Commonwealth. It includes both journalists who built their careers in small markets and those who worked in large markets, as well as two outstanding educators, one involved in the beginnings of journalism education in Kentucky and one who has helped to establish and maintain a standard of excellence respected throughout the state. The School of Journalism and Telecommunications is honored to welcome them to the Hall of Fame."
-- Beth Barnes,
School of Journalism and Telecommunications,
University of Kentucky
Leonard Downie Jr.
Robert R. Adams
LEXINGTON, Ky. (April 15, 2005) -- The University of Kentucky School of Journalism and Telecommunications will host two events honoring journalists on Tuesday, April 19, including the Kentucky Journalism Hall of Fame luncheon and the 2005 Creason Lecture.
Four journalists and two journalism educators will be inducted into the Kentucky Journalism Hall of Fame at noon Tuesday, April 19, at the Crowne Plaza Campbell House in Lexington, Ky. Later that day, Leonard Downie Jr., executive editor of The Washington Post, will present the 28th annual Joe Creason Lecture at 7 p.m. in Memorial Hall.
“We are thrilled to have one of the country’s top newspaper editors join us for this year’s Creason lecture,” said Beth Barnes, director of the School of Journalism and Telecommunications. “This will be a tremendous opportunity for our students and the community to hear from one of today’s foremost journalists.”
Downie has been executive editor at the Post since 1991. He began his career at the Washington, D.C., newspaper as a summer intern in 1964 and worked on the paper’s metro staff and as managing editor before being named executive editor.
Downie’s other duties at the Post have included supervision of the paper’s Watergate coverage and a stint as a London correspondent.
Downie is the author of four books, including “The News About the News: American Journalism in Peril,” co-authored with the Post’s Robert Kaiser. Downie was born in Cleveland, Ohio, and is a graduate of Ohio State University.
Al Cross, interim director of UK’s Institute for Rural Journalism and Community Issues and former national president of the Society of Professional Journalists, said, “If you had to draw up a list of the 10 most honorable and influential journalists in America, Leonard Downie would be one of them. The book he wrote with Bob Kaiser well plumbed the problems that face journalism, and their newspaper sets the standard for political and national-security coverage, in my view. It is a national newspaper that does a terrific job of serving the entire country, not only through its own pages, but those of newspapers that use its stories. Len Downie makes that happen.”
The Creason Lecture is supported by an endowment from the Bingham Foundation of Louisville. The event is free and open to the public.
The Kentucky Journalism Hall of Fame, housed in the UK Enoch Grehan Building, honors 136 journalists inducted since its 1981 inception. Six new honorees will join those ranks April 19. From a list of nominees, who must be either Kentucky natives or outstanding journalists who have spent the bulk of their careers in the state, a committee representing the state’s media, the UK Journalism Alumni Association, and the university selected this year’s honorees.
"This year’s group of inductees is a cross-section of the Commonwealth,” said Barnes. “It includes both journalists who built their careers in small markets and those who worked in large markets, as well as two outstanding educators, one involved in the beginnings of journalism education in Kentucky and one who has helped to establish and maintain a standard of excellence respected throughout the state. The School of Journalism and Telecommunications is honored to welcome them to the Hall of Fame."
The 2005 Hall of Fame inductees being recognized at the luncheon are:
- Robert R. Adams, director of student publications at Western Kentucky University. Adams has been adviser to the College Heights Herald since 1968 and a faculty member at WKU since 1966. Under his stewardship, the Herald has won 10 National Pacemaker Awards and numerous other national and regional honors. Adams holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees from WKU and has been publisher or co-publisher of five newspapers in Kentucky and Tennessee. He began his reporting career with the Bowling Green Daily News.
- Gene Clabes, equine director for Kentucky Equine Education Project (KEEP). Clabes is a past president of the Kentucky Press Association and former owner of The ( Ludlow) News Enterprise and the Recorder Newspapers of Northern Kentucky. He began his reporting career as sports editor of the Henderson Gleaner and also worked at The Evansville Courier and The Evansville Press. A UK graduate, he was managing editor of The Kentucky Kernel.
- Lee Denney, news director/anchor WBKR-FM and WOMI-AM, Owensboro. Denney has been with WBKR/WOMI for 20 years and led the stations’ coverage of the January 2000 Owensboro tornado. He has worked in television in Central City, Bowling Green, and Louisville, Ky.; Evansville, Ind.; Jacksonville, Fla.; Dayton, Ohio; and San Diego, Calif. He is a WKU graduate.
- Bob Johnson, reporter covering politics and government. Johnson was a politics and government reporter for WHAS-TV and Radio in Louisville for nearly 20 years. He also was the chief political writer and later an editor for the Louisville Courier-Journal.
- Marguerite McLaughlin, UK faculty member from 1914 until 1950. “Miss Margie” was the first female reporter on a major Kentucky daily newspaper and one of the first female journalism teachers in the United States. McLaughlin was a co-founder of the UK School of Journalism. She died in 1961.
- Bob Schulman, former radio, television, and newspaper journalist working out of Louisville. He wrote for the Louisville Courier-Journal and The Louisville Times and had a long-running commentary series on WHAS-TV and Radio. Recently, he has worked with the state judicial system on a series of bar/press seminars and forums to improve communication between the courts and the journalists who cover them.
If you wish to attend the Kentucky Journalism Hall of Fame Induction Luncheon, you can print a reservation form from the School’s Web site. For more information on the Creason Lecture, contact the School of Journalism and Telecommunications at (859) 257-1730. The Hall of Fame luncheon ceremony is sponsored by the UK Journalism and Telecommunications Alumni Association.