Join us for a special event featuring CNN anchor and Chief Washington correspondent, Jake Tapper, as part of the continuing series: “Democracy in Crisis: Views from the Press.” Tapper will be joined in conversation with Wallace House Director, Lynette Clemetson. Their wide-ranging discussion will cover the state of democracy and the role and responsibility of the press in a democratic society, as well as how Tapper’s experience of being an anchor and correspondent informs his craft of writing fiction.
Tapper’s newly released book, “All the Demons Are Here,” will be available for purchase at the event. The author will stay for a short book signing after the program.
About Jake Tapper
CNN anchor and chief Washington correspondent Jake Tapper joined the network in January 2013. Tapper currently anchors a two-hour weekday program, “The Lead with Jake Tapper,” which debuted in March 2013. He has hosted CNN’s Sunday morning show, “State of the Union,” since June 2015. In April 2021, he became the lead anchor for CNN for Washington, D.C. events.
About Lynette Clemetson
Lynette Clemetson is the Charles R. Eisendrath Director of Wallace House Center for Journalists, home of the Knight-Wallace Fellowships for Journalists and the Livingston Awards for Young Journalists at the University of Michigan.
Gerald R. Ford School Democracy and Debate With support from Detroit Public Television (DPTV)
Co-Sponsored by Detroit Public Television; PBS Books; and the Detroit Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists
An evening with Martin Baron in conversation with Stephen Henderson
For eight years, Martin Baron served as executive editor of The Washington Post, leading its newsroom from Jeff Bezos’s purchase of the paper to the election and presidency of Donald Trump. Join Baron in conversation with Stephen Henderson for a discussion on Baron’s new book, “Collision of Power: Trump, Bezos, and The Washington Post,” as he details his tenure at The Post and examines larger issues of the press and its role in democracy.
The author’s book will be available for sale onsite by Source Booksellers.
Parking for Detroit Public Theatre is available in a lot located at 3912 Third Avenue – just a few feet from the theatre on the corner of Selden and Third. Spots are limited and available on a first-come/first-served basis. They are $15 each.
There are additional parking options within walking distance of the theatre. There is metered parking on Selden Street and on Third Avenue, as well as free street parking in the immediate neighborhood on residential streets. Please reference this map to see the parking options in the area.
Co-Sponsors Detroit Public Television PBS Books Society of Professional Journalists – Detroit Chapter
Michigan’s transparency laws are among the most restrictive in the nation. The state is one of only two that totally exempts the governor’s office and lawmakers from open records laws. With political polarization high and public trust in institutions low, a lack of transparency threatens to further weaken the social fabric. Pushing past the official version of events is essential to understanding abuses of power and exploring possible remedies.
For nearly two decades of reporting from and about Michigan, 2017 Knight-Wallace Fellow and ProPublica journalist Anna Clark has covered numerous consequential stories, from the Flint water crisis to the mass shooting at Oxford High School. Join her for a discussion on the dangers of a culture of secrecy for Michigan and beyond, and what it takes to push back.
This event will not be livestreamed. A recording of the lecture will be available on our website following the event.
About the Speaker
Anna Clark is a ProPublica journalist who lives in Detroit. She is the author of The Poisoned City: Flint’s Water and the American Urban Tragedy, which won the Hillman Prize for Book Journalism and the Rachel Carson Environment Book Award, and was longlisted for the Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Nonfiction.
Clark’s writing has appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, Elle, The New Republic, Politico, Columbia Journalism Review, and other publications. She edited “A Detroit Anthology,” a 2015 Michigan Notable Book.
She is a nonfiction faculty member in Alma College’s MFA Program in Creative Writing. She was a Fulbright fellow in creative writing in Kenya. As a 2017 Knight-Wallace Fellow at the Univeristy of Michigan, Clark explored how chronic underfunding of American cities imperils residents.
About the Graham Hovey Lecture
The annual Graham Hovey Lecture recognizes a Knight-Wallace journalist whose career exemplifies the benefits of a fellowship at the University of Michigan and whose ensuing work is at the forefront of our national conversations. The event is named for the late Graham Hovey, director of the fellowship program from 1980 to 1986 and a distinguished journalist for The New York Times.
Wallace House Center for Journalists and the Weiser Center for Europe and Eurasia at the University of Michigan vehemently condemn the brutal attack on Russian journalist Elena Milashina and lawyer Alexander Nemov on July 4th when she was reporting in Chechnya. Elena spent this last year with us in Ann Arbor and decided to forgo her second year of fellowship and return to Russia because, as she expressed, “there is work to do” there.
As today marks the 100th day of Evan Gershkovich’s wrongful detainment in Moscow’s Lefortovo prison, we stand in solidarity with Elena, Evan, and all journalists and scholars whose freedom of speech is curtailed and whose life is threatened for bringing to light vital social and political issues. We hold dear and defend civil liberties and the rule of law, core principles of democratic societies. We wish Elena a full recovery and the ability to continue her work without harm or retribution. We will continue to uphold the vital work of journalists and scholars in uncovering, analyzing, and disseminating facts and truth. And we will continue to support those who spread knowledge about human rights abuses around the world.
Lynette Clemetson, Director, Wallace House Center for Journalists Geneviève Zubrzycki, Director, Weiser Center for Europe and Eurasia and Professor of Sociology
Launching my career in a disrupted media landscape, I became skilled in multimedia news. As a senior digital editor, I helped journalists learn how to embrace technological advances, to tell stories in new ways to audiences who expect news delivered to their ever-changing hand-held devices.
But another disruption shaped my career and life, one wrought by climate change and increasingly extreme weather. When Hurricane María devastated Puerto Rico in 2017, eventually causing more than 2,900 deaths and nearly $100 billion in damages, it left many newsrooms, mine included, in shambles. What good is all the technology in the world when the power grid and internet are knocked offline for up to six months? What do you do when whole regions of your audience are entirely cut off from communications and desperately need information to save their lives?
We were forced to adapt and get information to those in need. We improvised and launched successful text-based versions of our websites, making the news easier for audiences with limited internet to download.
Later, I realized that few newsrooms have comprehensive editorial and operational plans for natural disasters—especially small and medium-sized newsrooms already working with scarce resources because of the financial challenges facing journalism. So, I applied to the Knight-Wallace Fellowship to address this problem and to create guidelines for newsrooms affected by the devastating natural disasters they must cover.
Could journalists use ham radios to get our stories to the public when we lose our beloved internet?
After diving into the 24,000 courses offered at the University of Michigan, I began auditing a course called “Extreme Weather in a Changing Climate.” Professor Perry Samson helped me understand the recipe for hurricanes and how to better forecast which areas will be affected by storm surges in order to plan where to deploy reporting teams. He introduced me to the five wind tunnels at the university. I became particularly fascinated with one used to simulate tropical storms. I also discovered dozens of online resources to help me and the journalists I would marshal better cover the next natural disaster.
I learned about nuclear winter and geomagnetic storms, a “sneeze” from the sun that can destroy all communications across the planet for months. Each class was simultaneously mind-blowing and amazingly straightforward. I cringed each time Prof. Samson pointed out simple mistakes committed by newsrooms, such as journalists using the wrong hurricane symbol.
I was eager to share what I was learning with others. Working with Wallace House, I convened “Covering Natural Disasters: A Newsroom Preparedness Symposium.” We invited a group of select reporters and editors from Michigan, Texas, California, and Florida to come to Ann Arbor and join my class of Knight-Wallace Fellows for a day of collaborative learning with extreme weather experts. The symposium ended with us breaking into small groups and workshopping best practices for bringing together operational and editorial processes. I am now turning these ideas into a set of guidelines for newsrooms.
Among my biggest fascinations from the year was a paper I found about the historical role of radio amateurs in helping devastated communities during natural disasters. I learned that Herbert V. Akerberg, a student in Michigan, gave birth to emergency radio after a disastrous flood in Ohio in 1913.
That story of a young radio amateur whose mother brought him meals so he could continue broadcasting during the night stuck in my mind. Could journalists use ham radios to get our stories to the public when we lose our beloved internet?
The answer is yes, we can. Although several amateur radio programs exist, I could not find any that actively partnered with newsrooms. In March, I became certified as a spotter for the Skywarn program to report to the National Weather Service and city emergency offices about extreme weather conditions.
Satellites, as it turns out, can’t see everything. If a family has difficulty getting out of a house in the middle of a flood, there is no way for a satellite to know. Nor can a satellite identify when a tornado knocks down a line of 10 or 20 trees. But people in communities connected by radio can get the word out.
I knew immediately that the fellowship had opened a new door for me: to become an amateur radio journalist. I won’t be the first. I met a fellow amateur radio journalist living in Michigan. After I finish writing my emergency guidelines, my next step as an experienced digital leader will be to ensure that multiplatform news outlets understand the analog skills they still need to survive.
María Arce is Editorial Coach for Latin America at Global Press, where she leads learning and professional development for a team of reporters in the region. She also accepted a Reynold’s Journalism Institute Fellowship where she will continue her Knight-Wallace Fellowship work and develop and launch a training and resource guide on how journalists can work with ham radio operators.
Today the Livingston Awards honor stories that represent the best in local, national and international reporting by journalists under the age of 35. The winning stories uncovered text messages indicating Mississippi’s misuse of federal welfare funding, the inner working of the U.S. government’s child separation policy, and the atrocities committed by Putin’s army against civilians in Ukraine. The $10,000 prizes are for work released in 2022.
The Livingston Awards also honored Ken Auletta, author and writer for The New Yorker, with a special tribute for his enduring commitment to the Livingston Awards and the careers of young journalists. Auletta joined the Livingston board of national judges in 1983, the third year of the program, and served in that role through 2022.
Livingston Awards national judges Sewell Chan of The Texas Tribune,María Elena Salinas of ABC News and Matt Murray of News Corp introduced the winners at a ceremony hosted by former Livingston Awards national judge Anna Quindlen, author.
“The best reporters keep looking, questioning and documenting when they are told there is nothing more to see,” said Lynette Clemetson, Livingston Awards director. “This year’s winners laid bare abuses of power and the networks of complicity and complacency that allowed those abuses to unfold. Their work influenced the public record and how history will regard the players and their deeds. It is an honor to recognize them for their tenacity, rigor and storytelling excellence.”
Today’s ceremony included special remarks from Matthew Luxmoore, a Livingston Award finalist and reporter from The Wall Street Journal who covers Russia, Ukraine and the former Soviet Union. He spoke at the podium in support of his friend and colleague, Evan Gershkovich, who has been wrongfully imprisoned in Russia since March 29 of this year.
Celebrating its 42nd year, the awards bolster the work of young reporters, create the next generation of journalism leaders and mentors, and advance civic engagement around powerful storytelling. Major sponsors include the University of Michigan, Knight Foundation, the Indian Trail Charitable Foundation, the Mollie Parnis Livingston Foundation, Christiane Amanpour, the Judy and Fred Wilpon Family Foundation, Dr. Gil Omenn and Martha Darling and the W.K. Kellogg Foundation.
The 2023 winners for work released in 2022 are listed below.
Anna Wolfe, 28, of Mississippi Today for “The Backchannel: Mississippi’s Welfare Scandal,” a multiyear investigation into Mississippi’s 2% approval rate of applicants for federal welfare funding uncovering text messages between then-Governor Bill Bryant, state officials and Bryant’s friends, including NFL football legend Brett Favre and unraveling the largest public fraud in Mississippi’s history.
“Anna Wolfe’s dogged investigation into Mississippi’s misuse of funds intended to help needy families demonstrates the power of journalism to expose corruption. She was the first to reveal text messaging indicating that welfare funds had been diverted to a pharmaceutical company in which a retired NFL star was an early investor. Her tenacious digging, over multiple years, has had a staggering impact on a state with high levels of poverty and inequality.” — Sewell Chan, Livingston Awards national judge
Caitlin Dickerson, 33, of The Atlantic for “We Need to Take Away Children,” a masterful examination of the U.S. government’s child separation policy revealing how officials at every level heedlessly and often deceptively advanced policy that defied the country’s most basic stated values.
“In her exhaustive reconstruction of the Trump administration’s implementation of its family separation policy, Caitlin Dickerson brought to life jaw-dropping and eye-opening details of how the policy was accepted and implemented at different levels of government. Through exclusive interviews at multiple levels, she meticulously laid out how a handful of people set off a chain reaction of chaos and pain that continues to this day. Her reporting has established a new public record of a devastating episode in our nation’s history.” — María Elena Salinas, Livingston Awards national judge
Vasilisa Stepanenko, 22, of The Associated Press for “A Year of War,” a series of harrowing videos exposing the atrocities against civilians committed by Putin’s army in Ukraine and laying bare the devasting human toll of war.
“In a year that saw a great deal of amazing and powerful work from journalists covering the Ukraine war, Vasilisa’s stories had a unique immediacy and visceral power that vividly bore witness to the impact of the war in her country. Her work had an undeniable impact on the world’s understanding of the struggle. And the great personal courage she displayed amid tremendous peril underscores the stakes of the battle to tell the truth on the ground.” — Matt Murray, Livingston Awards national judge
Ken Auletta, author, media and communications writer for The New Yorker and Livingston Awards judge from 1983 to 2022.
This year the Livingston Awards honored Ken Auletta with a special tribute for his enduring commitment to the program and the careers of young journalists. Anna Quindlen, author and Livingston Awards judge from 2009 to 2022, presented Auletta with the award and introduced a video with tributes from his fellow Livingston Award judges and past Livingston award winners. Kara Swisher said in the video tribute, “There’s an expression. Anything that can shine does. Ken shines a light on the things that shine, which is really important when it comes to young reporters.” Auletta’s most meaningful legacy is in the lives and careers of journalists he helped transform.
In addition to Buzbee, Chan and Murray, the Livingston national judges panel includes Raney Aronson-Rath of PBS; Audie Cornish of CNN; Lydia Polgreen of The New York Times; Bret Stephens of The New York Times; and Kara Swisher of New York Magazine.
Wallace House Center for Journalists and the University of Michigan announced today the 2023 Livingston Awards finalists in local, national, and international reporting. The awards support young journalists and honor the best reporting and storytelling by journalists under the age of 35 across all forms of journalism. The finalist selections were chosen from more than 450 entries for work released in 2022.
This year’s winners will be announced on June 13, 2023, at an in-person awards ceremony hosted by Anna Quindlen with a special tribute to Ken Auletta for his enduring commitment to the Livingston Awards and the careers of young journalists.
“This year’s finalists and the issues they pursued affirm the commitment of young reporters to tackle the toughest of stories,” said Lynette Clemetson, director of the awards and the Wallace House Center for Journalists. “The breathtaking range of this exceptional work demonstrates the unique ability of journalism to make us stop, take notice, bear witness, and expect accountability.”
Celebrating its 42nd year, the awards bolster the work of young reporters, create the next generation of journalism leaders and mentors, and advance civic engagement around powerful storytelling. The sponsors include the University of Michigan, the Knight Foundation, the Indian Trail Charitable Foundation, the Mollie Parnis Livingston Foundation, Christiane Amanpour, Dr. Gil Omenn and Martha Darling, the Judy and Fred Wilpon Foundation, Emerson Collective, W.K. Kellogg Foundation, The Associated Press and The New Yorker.
The Livingston Awards regional judges read all qualifying entries to select the finalists in local, national and international reporting. The regional judging panel includes Molly Ball, national political correspondent, TIME; Stella Chávez, immigration and demographics reporter, KERA Public Radio (Dallas); Chris Davis, deputy for the Local Investigative Reporting Fellowship, The New York Times; David Greene, Co-founder, Fearless Media and Host, “Left, Right & Center” KCRW (Los Angeles); Stephen Henderson, Executive Editor, BridgeDetroit and Host, WDET, public radio Detroit and Detroit Public Television; Shirley Leung, columnist and associate editor, The Boston Globe; and Amna Nawaz, co-anchor, PBS “NewsHour.”
The Livingston Awards national judges review all finalist entries and select the winners. The national judges are Raney Aronson-Rath, executive producer, “FRONTLINE”; Sally Buzbee, executive editor, The Washington Post; Sewell Chan, editor in chief, The Texas Tribune; Audie Cornish, anchor and correspondent, CNN; Matt Murray, consultant, News Corp; Lydia Polgreen, opinion columnist, The New York Times; María Elena Salinas, contributor, ABC News; Bret Stephens, opinion columnist, The New York Times; and Kara Swisher, executive producer, Code Conference.
We present the 2023 Livingston Awards finalists and invite you to review their work here.
Mayowa AinaandKari Plog, KNKX Public Radio and The Seattle Times
James Barragánand Davis Winkie, The Texas Tribune and Military Times
Sarah Blaskey and Nicholas Nehamas, Miami Herald
Marisa Gerber, Los Angeles Times
Niki Griswold, Austin American-Statesman
Samantha Hogan, The Maine Monitor
Maya Kaufman, Crain’s New York Business
David Lefflerand Savanna Strott, Public Health Watch in partnership with The Pulitzer Center, the Investigative Reporting Workshop and Grist
Alex Mann, The Baltimore Sun
Max Nesterak, Minnesota Reformer
Krystal Nurse, Lansing State Journal
Phoebe PetrovicandNina Earnest, Wisconsin Watch and Wisconsin Public Radio
Albert Samaha, BuzzFeed News
Will Sennott, The New Bedford Light in partnership with ProPublica
Langston TaylorandZachary T. Sampson, Tampa Bay Times
Trisha Thadani, San Francisco Chronicle
Carter Walker, LNP | LancasterOnline
Julie Zauzmer Weil, Adrian Blanco RamosandLeo Dominguez, The Washington Post
Anna Wolfe, Mississippi Today
Rachel Adams-Heard andDavis Land, Bloomberg News
Marshall Cohen, Zachary Cohenand Dan Merica, CNN
Jasper Craven, Mother Jones
Gaby Del Valle, TheVerge
Caitlin Dickerson,The Atlantic
Robert Downen, The Houston Chronicle
Nicholas Florko, STAT
AlexHeath, The Verge
Astead W. Herndon, TheNew York Times
Cassandra Jaramillo, Reveal from TheCenter for Investigative Reporting
Caroline Kitchener, The Washington Post
Ava Kofman,The New Yorker and ProPublica
Samantha Michaelsand Mark Helenowski, Mother Jones
Brett Murphy, ProPublica
Elissa NadwornyandLauran Migaki, NPR
Andrea Patiño Contreras, Univision News Digital
AlexandraRain, Deseret News
Lauren Rosenthal, Jamie Hobbsand Anna Canny, American Public Media
Meg Shutzer and Rachel Lauren Mueller, The New York Times and the Investigative Reporting Program at the University of California, Berkeley, Graduate School of Journalism
Anjali Singhvi, The New York Times
Lynzy Billing, ProPublica
Regine Cabato and Shibani Mahtani, The Washington Post
Isabelle Khurshudyanand KamilaHrabchuk, The Washington Post
Oscar Lopez, The New York Times
Matthew Luxmoore, The Wall Street Journal
Lyse Mauvais and Solin Muhammed Amin, Al-Monitor
Leila Miller, Los Angeles Times
Alexander Sammon, The New Republic
Mia Sato, The Verge
Emily Schultheis, Coda Story
SarahSouli, The Atavist
Vasilisa Stepanenko, The Associated Press
Sam Tabachnik, The Denver Post
Elizabeth Trovall, Houston Chronicle
Vivian Yee, Allison McCann and Josh Holder, The New York Times
More on the finalists’ work and links to watch, listen and read here.
Wallace House Center for Journalists is excited to welcome Ashley Bates as its Associate Director.
In this position, Bates will manage the daily operations of Wallace House and the Knight-Wallace Fellowship activities and support Wallace House director Lynette Clemetson in the strategic direction and running of all organizational programs and initiatives. Bates will also be responsible for alumni engagement, outreach activities across the journalism industry, and recruitment for the Knight-Wallace Fellowships, ensuring a diverse range of program participants.
“I am honored to join the Wallace House Center for Journalists team,” said Bates. “I look forward to getting to know this community, working in creative partnership with news organizations and alumni, and offering responsive programming and individualized support to Knight-Wallace Fellows.”
Bates comes to Wallace House with both organizational leadership and journalism experience. She has a demonstrated record of administering complex programs, nurturing alumni communities, leading professional development training, recruiting underrepresented voices, and executing imaginative programming that is tailored to the needs of organizations and their participants. For the past four years, she has served as the Program Manager for the University of Michigan’s Helen Zell Writers’ Program, a top-ranked MFA program for fiction authors and poets. Previously, Bates managed graduate student recruitment and career mentorship initiatives for the University of Michigan’s International Institute.
Bates worked as an investigative journalist in Gaza, the West Bank, Israel, and the United States, producing videos and long-form features for The Nation, Haaretz, Mother Jones, Huffington Post, Tikkun, Jerusalem Post Magazine, GlobalPost, and Columbia Journalism Review.
Fluent in Arabic, she served for eight years as the Program Director and then the Executive Director of an Israeli-Palestinian dialogue and social justice advocacy organization called Hands of Peace.
She earned a bachelor’s degree in political science from Amherst College and a master’s degree in journalism from Northwestern University’s Medill School. Bates will start at Wallace House on May 1.
Wallace House Presents Fred de Sam Lazaro, executive director of Under-Told Stories and correspondent for the “PBS NewsHour,” as he takes a critical look at the world’s underreported events and awakens us to understand the daily concerns of faraway people whose lives and challenges intersect with our own. A 1989 Michigan Journalism Fellow (later named the Knight-Wallace Journalism Fellowship), de Sam Lazaro founded Under-Told Stories in 2006, a journalism project focused on the consequences of poverty and stories about the world’s biggest challenges, including climate, food and water, and human rights. In addition to producing content for news organizations, Under-Told Stories collaborates with educators to engage students on the pressing issues of our time.
The Eisendrath Symposium honors Charles R. Eisendrath, former director of Wallace House, and his lifelong commitment to international journalism.
About the speaker Fred de Sam Lazaro is the executive director of Under-Told Stories and has served as a “PBS NewsHour” correspondent since 1985. He was also a regular contributor and substitute anchor for PBS’ “Religion & Ethics NewsWeekly.” Fred also has directed films from India and the Democratic Republic of Congo for the acclaimed documentary series “Wide Angle.”
Fred has reported from 70 countries, focusing on the myriad issues underlying poverty and human suffering, which are underreported in the mainstream U.S. media. He founded the Under-Told Stories Project, now located at the University of St. Thomas, which is building a library of social innovation and entrepreneurship reports designed to use storytelling to enhance students’ understanding of the pressing global issues of our time.
An Evening with CNN Anchor Chris Wallace and Governor Gretchen Whitmer
6 PM | WEDNESDAY, MARCH 8, 2023
Rackham Auditorium 915 E. Washington Street
Wallace House Presents CNN AnchorChris Wallace and Governor Gretchen Whitmer as part of the continuing series “Democracy in Crisis: Views from the Press.”
Watch this hour-long special event with Mr. Wallace and Governor Whitmer as they discuss politics, public service, the media, and the state of our democracy, with opening remarks by the University of Michigan PresidentSanta Ono.
About Chris Wallace
Chris Wallace is an anchor for CNN and host of Who’s Talking to Chris Wallace? which also airs on HBO Max. He has covered every major political event of our time, including five presidential elections, and has interviewed every president since George H.W. Bush.
His career in journalism spans more than 50 award-winning years in broadcasting, including 14 years at ABC News as chief correspondent and host, and at NBC, as chief White House correspondent, moderator of Meet the Press and anchor of NBC Nightly News. He spent 18 years at Fox News as anchor of Fox News Sunday.
A graduate of Harvard University, Wallace began his career as a city hall reporter at The Boston Globe. Wallace is also the New York Times bestselling author of Countdown bin Laden: The Untold Story of the 247-Day Hunt to Bring the Mastermind of 9/11 to Justice and Countdown 1945: The Extraordinary Story of the Atomic Bomb and the 116 Days That Changed the World.
About Governor Gretchen Whitmer
Governor Gretchen Whitmer is a lifelong Michigander who as governor has signed over 900 bipartisan bills and four balanced, bipartisan budgets.
She lists among her accomplishments the largest education investments in state history, increases in on-campus mental health resources, and expanding low or no-cost child care in affordable, high-quality pre-K.
Governor Whitmer earned a bachelor’s degree and a law degree from Michigan State University. The governor spent time as a Towsley Foundation Policymaker in Residence at the University of Michigan Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy in 2015. Reflecting on that time, she told graduates at U-M’s 2019 Commencement, “I experienced my own version of the Michigan Difference.”