Sarah Stillman Wins Top Award at the 2013 MOLLY National Journalism Prize Dinner
Honorable Mentions: Shane Bauer, Mother Jones Joseph Neff and David Raynor, The News & Observer, Raleigh, and Ames Alexander and Karen Garloch, The Charlotte Observer
The MOLLY Prize recognizes great American journalism and honors the memory of Molly Ivins, the legendary reporter, columnist and former editor of The Texas Observer. The 2013 MOLLY National Journalism Prize has been presented to Sarah Stillman of The New Yorker for her article “The Throwaways,” which addresses the use and abuse of juvenile drug offenders as confidential informants by law enforcement officers. The awards ceremony in Austin, Texas, featured seven-time Emmy Award-winning ABC News broadcaster John Quiñones and Pulitzer Prize-winning syndicated columnist Connie Schultz.
Honorable Mention awards were presented to Shane Bauer for “No Way Out,” an exploration of the extensive and expensive use of solitary confinement in U.S. prisons published in Mother Jones; and to the reporting team of Ames Alexander and Karen Garloch of The Charlotte Observer, and Joseph Neff and David Raynor of The News & Observer of Raleigh, N.C., for their joint project, “Prognosis: Profits,” a series about the billing practices, profits of nonprofit hospitals in North Carolina.
The awards are presented annually by The Texas Observer, the nonprofit magazine that has covered Texas politics, government, arts and culture for 58 years.
Sarah Stillman, who won honorable mention in the 2012 MOLLY competition, is a staff writer for The New Yorker and a visiting scholar at NYU’s Arthur L. Carter Journalism Institute. Her recent work has received a number of national and international awards, including the National Magazine Award. Her coverage of America’s wars overseas and the challenges facing soldiers at home has appeared in The Washington Post, The Nation, newrepublic.com, slate.com, and theatlantic.com. She taught a seminar on the Iraq war at Yale and ran a creative-writing workshop for four years at Cheshire Correctional Institute, a maximum-security men’s prison in Connecticut. She is currently reporting on immigration and criminal justice issues.
The 2013 MOLLY Prize Dinner
The MOLLY prizes were presented at a June 6 dinner in Austin, Texas, that featured seven-time Emmy Award-winning ABC News broadcaster John Quiñones as the keynote speaker. Pulitzer Prize-winning syndicated columnist Connie Schultz was the emcee, and Lyndon and Kay Olson were Honorary Chairs of the event. Susan Longley of Austin, president of The Longley Group and of The Texas Democracy Foundation, which publishes The Texas Observer, received The Bernard Rapoport Philanthropy Award. Janis Pinnelli and Melissa Jones served as event Co-Chairs.
Prize presentations were made by editors and reporters from The Texas Observer. The MOLLY Board of Advisors, composed of prominent journalists and scholars, reviewed the entries and selected the winners.
The MOLLY National Journalism Prize, including a $5,000 cash award, was established by The Texas Observer to recognize print or online journalism of exceptional merit that focuses on civil liberties and social justice, and embodies the intelligence, deep thinking and passionate wit that marked the work of the late Molly Ivins. The honorable mention prizes include $1,000 cash awards.
Our Generous Sponsors
The Texas Observer is grateful to everyone who attended the dinner and contributed to a memorable evening. We are particularly thankful for our generous sponsors, including:
Bill & Diana Hobby
Lisa Blue Baron
Lyndon & Kay Olson
The Rapoport Family
Carol Barger / Aimee Boone & Ed Cunningham
Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, Dr. Don Carleton
Renee & Russ Graham
Joan & Jeff Lava / Nona Niland
Janis & Joe Pinnelli
Chula Reynolds, in memory of Mary Margaret Farabee
Pat & Bud Smothers
Suzanne & Marc Winkelman / MFI Foundation
American Journalism Historians Association, Patrick Cox
Susan Crews Bailey / Beverly Fondren & John Scott
Becky Beaver & John Duncan
Susan Blount / Larry Norwood
Lois Chiles, Lois Chiles Foundation
Ray Farabee / Karen & Steve Farabee
Clare R. Hudspeth / Sara Speights
Bill Ikard / Anne Wynne, Ikard Wynne LLP
Libby & Dale Linebarger
Jim Marston & Annette LoVoi / Alfred Stanley & Kathleen Guido
Conrad Martin, Stewart R. Mott Foundation
Barbara Morgan & Jerry Galow
Susan Morris & Richard Donnelly
Trilla & Bob Pando / Mary Nell & Phil Mathis
Debbie & Jim Parish
Donna & George Shipley
Sunny & Shelton Smith
Genevieve Van Cleve & Peter Ravella
For all of their hard work, we thank the MOLLY Board of Advisors:
Hugh Aynesworth, Maurine H. Beasley, Tom Bettag, Mike Blackman, Nate Blakeslee, Frederick Blevens, Roy Blount, Jr., Mary Breasted, Robert Bryce, Ken Bunting, Wanda Cash, Carlton Carl, Mike Cochran, Gail Collins, Patrick Cox, Greg Curtis, Lou Dubose, Ronnie Dugger, Margaret Engel, James Fallows, Doug Foster, Ellen Goodman, Wade Goodwyn, Patti Kilday Hart, Jim Henderson, Steven Isenberg, Melissa Jones, Lewis Lapham, Myra MacPherson, David McHam, Dave McNeely, Kevin Merida, Judith Davidson Moyers, Victor Navasky, Kaye Northcott, Larry Norwood, Karen Olsson, John Pope, Dan Rather, Geoff Rips, Matt Rothschild, Ben Sargent, Connie Schultz, Robert Siegel, Erna Smith, Glenn Smith, Paul Stekler, Carlton Stowers, Diane Suchetka, Ellen Sweets, Mimi Swartz, Saralee Tiede, Rusty Todd, Calvin Trillin, Jim Willse and John Young.
Additionally, we thank the MOLLY Award Steering Committee:
Melissa Jones & Janis Pinnelli, Co-Chairs; Susan Crews Bailey, Jayne Barrett, Becky Beaver, Susan Blount, Carlton Carl, Jan Demetri, Karen Farabee, Carol Flake, Beverly Fondren, Charlotte Herzele, Clare Hudspeth, Mary Barminski Johnson, Tiffany Johns, Mary Jo Kennard, Joan Lava, Charlotte McCann, Barbara Morgan, Susan Morris, Nona Niland, Larry Norwood, Susan Smith Richardson, Margie Rine, Geoff Rips, Nancy Scanlan, Sunny Smith, Sarah Speights, Ellen Sweets, Margot Thomas, Genevieve Van Cleve, Caryl Yontz.
And finally we thank the Board of Directors for all their efforts:
Susan Longley, President; Lisa Blue Baron, Carlton Carl, Jennifer Cooper, Melissa Jones, Jim Marston, Mary Nell Mathis, Ronald Rapoport, Peter Ravella, Susan Smith Richardson, Geoff Rips, Ronnie Dugger.
All proceeds go to support The Texas Observer’s investigative journalism and The MOLLY National Journalism Prize. If you were unable to attend the dinner and would like to donate, please click here.