School Awards Alcindor 2022 Zenger Award

Nov. 30, 2022

On Wednesday, Nov. 16, the University of Arizona School of Journalism honored PBS’ Yamiche Alcindor with the 2022 Zenger Award for Press Freedom during the Zenger Award Dinner.

“It was an event that inspired our journalism students and showed how important it is to seek the truth,” School of Journalism Director Jessica Retis said.

Thanks to the corporate sponsorships of Ballard Spahr Law Firm and Arizona Public Media, along with a multitude of table and student ticket sponsors, the 2022 Zenger dinner was one of the most memorable events in the School’s history.

The entire event is available to watch on our YouTube page, linked here and above.

“This event was amazing, and I was so excited to see Yamiche talk, I hope to be a broadcast journalist after graduation too,” School of Journalism Student Ambassador Vika Nimenya said.

Alcindor’s Zenger speech exemplified her career as a national correspondent and tenacious journalist. 


“We have to have a free press to have a working democracy,” Alcindor said. “We have absolutely been living through times of challenge and controversy and what this award means to me is that we should all be using our skills and our talents to show up in these times of challenge and controversy.” 

She spoke extensively about her background, telling the audience she owed a part of her journalistic career to her Haitian mother.

“A lot of times people ask me ‘what made you so passionate for journalism’ and I think of my mother,” Alcindor said. “I used to go with my mother to work and she was a school social worker for 35 years and, for me, journalism and social work are so connected.”

During the Q & A portion of the program, audience members had their questions read by moderator Fernanda Echavarri. Echavarri is the senior producer of podcasts at Futuro Studios and 07’ Journalism School alumni.

One anonymous audience member wrote that their question was meant for Alcindor’s mother: when did you notice your daughter was on the path god set for her and what did you do to nurture and encourage it?


Her mother replied, “As soon as she was born.” She went on to explain how Alcindor always worked hard and loved school, she knew she would grow up to do amazing things.

“It was an impressive event to celebrate good journalism. Yamiche recognized her roots and how her mom supported her,” Retis said. “Her choice to study journalism throughout her career, it shows how important it is for family members to support good journalism.”

Photos taken by Antonia M. Muskat and Emily Brooke Wright.