FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: September 14, 2011
CONTACT: Lou Morin, Director of Marketing and Public Relations
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Two MPBN Reporters Cited for Excellence by Journalistic Peers
Irwin Gratz Wins Yankee Quill Award, Susan Sharon Cited
for Environmental Reporting
(Portland, Maine) – Irwin Gratz and Susan Sharon, two veteran reporters with nearly 40 years of combined experience working for the Maine Public Broadcasting Network, have been recognized by their journalistic peers for the quality of their reporting.
Irwin Gratz, who lives in Falmouth, is a radio news reporter who hosts MPBN’s local broadcast of the NPR program Morning Edition and one of four recipients of this year’s Yankee Quill Award, which recognizes career contributions to the betterment of journalism in the six New England states.
The Yankee Quill is presented annually by the Academy of New England Journalists through the auspices of the New England Society of Newspaper Editors Foundation. In a statement, the foundation cited Gratz for his “remarkable leadership in the Society of Professional Journalists, [his] contributions to in-depth radio news coverage of issues critical to Maine, and [his] unrelenting advocacy for the highest ethical standards.”
Gratz has been a member of the Society for Professional Journalists since1983 and has held positions as a state chapter president, a member of its national board and was the SPJ’s national president in 2004 and 2005. This year’s awards ceremony is being held Friday, November 11 in Tewksbury, Mass.
Susan Sharon of Auburn was recognized nationally for her outstanding beat reporting, specifically for her coverage of environmental issues in Maine. The Society for Environmental Journalists awarded her third place in the small market category for her continuing coverage of efforts in Augusta to weaken Maine’s environmental regulations after Republicans took control of the Blaine House and both houses of the Maine Legislature in January.
In awarding Sharon third place, the SEJ judges commended for “speaking truth to power…forcefully, out loud and on the air.”
The SEJ awards ceremony is being held Saturday, October 22 in Miami, Fla.
“All of us who follow the news in Maine know Irwin and Susan are outstanding journalists,” said Jim Dowe, MPBN President and CEO, who added, “it’s great to see them getting regional and national recognition. Together these awards illustrate the journalistic value and service Mainers receive in return for their investment in MPBN.”