2017 Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Awards Winners


Press Contact:
Max Burns
Communications Director
[email protected]

(May 5, 2017 | New York) Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights announced the winners of its 49th Annual Journalism Awards today.

The Prizes are given in student and professional categories. The winning topics include poverty, the war in Syria, the Flint water crisis, immigration, criminal justice and indigenous populations.

The Grand Prize winner and the John Seigenthaler Prize for Courage in Reporting will be selected from the winners of the 13 categories and announced at the May 23rd ceremony at the Newseum in Washington DC.

In a new Award category, Veteran broadcaster Bill Moyers (Moyers & Company, Bill Moyers Journal) will be honored with the Media Advocacy Award for “Rikers,” his documentary detailing the violent world inside New York’s Rikers Island prison. New York Mayor Bill de Blasio recently announced a plan to permanently close the notorious prison.

“In difficult political times, the power of expression and freedom of the press is more important than ever,” said Kerry Kennedy, President of Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights. “The Journalists who followed my father’s 1968 campaign created the Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Awards in his name, and this year’s winners have produced work that speaks to the spirit of my father and the Book and Journalism Awards.”

The Awards will be presented along with the 37th Robert F. Kennedy Book Award, by Mrs. Robert Kennedy and Kerry Kennedy with Chair Margaret Engel on May 23, 2017 at 6:30 pm at the Newseum. The event will be emceed by Book Chair Michael Beschloss with remarks by Kerry Kennedy and Bill Moyers.

Honorees receive a bust of Robert F. Kennedy and a cash prize in recognition of their work. Register to attend the ceremony here!


High School Broadcast
“A Whole New World,” by Josh Horned, Chloe Durham and Rachel Pfeifer
HTV Magazine, Hillcrest High School, Springfield, Missouri

High School Print
A Ball, A Team, A War and a Dream,” by Anthony Kristensen
Francis Howell North High School, St. Charles, Missouri

College Journalism
“Wounds of White Clay: Nebraska’s Shameful Legacy,” by In-Depth Reporting class
University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Nebraska

Print – Domestic
“Bias on the Bench,” by Josh Salman, Emily le Coz and Elizabeth Johnson
Sarasota Herald Tribune, Florida

Print – International
“The Assad Files,” by Ben Taub
The New Yorker

Photography – Domestic
“Toxic Stress: A Cycle of Poverty and Gun Violence,” by Laurie Skrivan
St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Missouri

Photography – International
“Signs of Your Identity,” by Daniella Zalcman
Various Publications

“The Strange Death of José de Jesús,” by Fernanda Echávarri, Marlon Bishop and Maria Hinojosa
Latino USA

New Media
“Vacation in No Man’s Sea,” by Univision News Digital

“The Flint Water Scandal,” by Mike Thompson
Detroit Free Press

Television – Domestic
“The Naked Truth: Rigged,” Fusion
Executive Producer Keith Summa
Senior Producer: Nina Alvarez
Producer: Alissa Figueroa
Associate Producer: Alcione Gonzales
Correspondent: Natasha Del Toro
Supervising Producer: Justine Gubar

Television – International
“A Girl in the River: The Price of Forgiveness,” produced and directed by Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy

Media Advocacy Award
“Rikers” by Bill Moyers
Schumann Media Center and Brick City TV in association with Public Square Media
Executive Editor — Bill Moyers. Executive Producer — Judy Doctoroff O’Neill
Producers — by Marc Levin, Mark Benjamin, and Rolake Bamgbose

About Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights
Led by human rights activist and lawyer Kerry Kennedy, Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights has advocated for a more just and peaceful world since 1968. We work alongside local activists to ensure lasting positive change in governments and corporations. Our team includes leading attorneys, advocates, entrepreneurs and writers united by a commitment to social justice.

About the Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Awards
The Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Awards honor outstanding reporting on issues that reflect Robert Kennedy’s concerns, including human rights, social justice, and the power of individual action in the United States and around the world. Winning entries provide insights into the causes, conditions, and remedies of human rights violations and injustice, and critical analyses of relevant policies, programs, individual actions, and private endeavors that foster positive change. The Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Awards are among the few in which winners are determined by their peers. Past winners include The Washington Post, National Public Radio, CBS’s 60 Minutes, ABC’s 20/20, and HBO.