Alumni who won or contributed to Pulitzer Prize

At least 17 graduates or former students of the UA School of Journalism have received or shared a Pulitzer Prize — or contributed to a Pulitizer as part of a newspaper's staff. If you are a UA grad and had a part in winning a Pulitizer (or know an alum who did), please contact Outreach Coordinator Mike Chesnick at mchesnick1@email.arizona.edu or 520-626-3079.

(Photo IDs are left to right; the comments are from Pulitizer Prize judges.)

2016

Reporters Brittny Mejia (2014), Stephen Ceasar (2009) and Marisa Gerber (2011), and copy editor Kristina Bui (2013),
Los Angeles Times

  • Shared the Breaking News Reporting award with L.A. Times staff "for exceptional reporting, including both local and global perspectives, on the shooting in San Bernardino and the terror investigation that followed."                                             

2015

Editor Gilbert Bailon (1981),
St. Louis Post-Dispatch

  • Oversaw the newspaper's coverage of unrest in Ferguson, Missouri, that resulted in the Breaking News Photography award for the Post-Dispatch photography staff "for powerful images of the despair and anger — stunning photojournalism that served the community while informing the country." Bailon has been the top editor in St. Louis since 2012.  

2014

Reporter Brian Ballou (1992),
The Boston Globe

  • Shared the Breaking News Reporting award with Globe staff "for exhaustive and empathetic coverage of the Boston Marathon bombings and the ensuing manhunt that enveloped the city, using photography and a range of digital tools to capture the full impact of the tragedy.” Ballou is now at the Sun-Sentinel in Florida.

2014

Copy editor Bill Walsh (1984),
The Washington Post

  • Edited part of a series on the National Security Agency that won the Public Service award for the Post staff "for its revelation of widespread secret surveillance by the NSA, marked by authoritative and insightful reports to help the public understand how the disclosures fit into the larger framework of national security."

2009

Reporters Ryan Gabrielson and Paul Giblin (1988),
East Valley Tribune

  • Shared the Local Reporting award "for their adroit use of limited resources to reveal, in print and online, how a popular sheriff's focus on immigration enforcement endangered investigation of violent crime and other aspects of public safety.” Gabrielson is now at ProPublica; Giblin is at the Arizona Republic. UANews story on award

2004

Reporter Nancy Cleeland (1977),
Los Angeles Times

  • Co-authored a series and shared the National Reporting award with the Times staff "for an engrossing examination of the tactics that have made Wal-Mart the largest company in the world with cascading effects across American towns and developing countries." Cleeland is now deputy director of communications for the U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Safety and Health Administration.

2003

Publisher Richard Gilman (1972),
Boston Globe

  • Shared the Public Service award with the Globe staff "for courageous, comprehensive coverage of sexual
    abuse by priests, an effort that pierced secrecy, stirred local, national and international reaction and produced changes in the Roman Catholic Church.” Gilman, now retired, has endowed a scholarship for UA journalism students.

2001

Staff editor Ford Burkhart (1963),
The New York Times

  • Shared the Public Service award with the Times staff "for 'A Nation Challenged,' a special section published regularly after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks on America, which coherently and comprehensively covered the tragic events, profiled the victims, and tracked the developing story, locally and globally." Burkhart, a retired UA journalism professor, helped write "Portraits of Grief" and other parts of the 9/11 package. He also helped edit other Pulitzer-winning projects while at the Times from 1996 to 2007. He is a freelance writer now.

1994

Copy editor Elena Stauffer (1989),
Akron Beacon Journal

  • Shared the Public Service award with the Beacon Journal staff "for a broad examination of local racial attitudes and a subsequent effort to promote improved communication in the community." Stauffer, who helped copyedit the series, is senior program coordinator for the UA School of Journalism.  

1993

Reporter Elinor Brecher (1977),
Miami Herald

  • Shared the Public Service award with the Herald staff "for coverage that not only helped readers cope with Hurricane Andrew's devastation but also showed how lax zoning, inspection and building codes had contributed to the destruction.” Brecher, retired from the Herald, is a freelance writer.

1984

Staff editor Frank Sotomayor (1966), photographer José Galvez (1972) and reporter Virginia EscalanteLos Angeles Times

  • Shared the Public Service award with the Times staff "for an in-depth examination of L.A.'s Latino community." Sotomayor, now retired, chairs the school's Journalism Advisory Council; Galvez gives lectures on his photos; Escalante teaches writing at San Diego City College.

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