TORONTO, June 13, 2019 /CNW/ - The CBC News podcast Missing & Murdered: Finding Cleo is this year's recipient of the CJF Jackman Award for Excellence in Journalism in the large-media category, presented tonight at the annual Canadian Journalism Foundation Awards.
The powerful podcast explored the disappearance of Cleopatra Semaganis Nicotine, a young Cree girl taken from her Saskatchewan home in the Sixties Scoop, put up for adoption in the U.S. and wrongly thought to have been murdered while hitchhiking back to Canada.
"What makes Finding Cleo unique and engaging is the way it is told ? as a 10-part podcast where you are along for the journey, facing the roadblocks of bureaucracy on a cold trail, experiencing the frustrations and unsure of the outcome," says Excellence Award jury member Isabel Bassett, former chair and CEO of TVO. "Finding out the truth of one young girl accomplishes more than bringing closure for a family ? it tells the much larger story of the 'Sixties Scoop' from the point of view of those who experienced it, in a way relatable by all."
Named after CJF founder Eric Jackman, this annual award honours news organizations, large and small, that embody exemplary journalism and have a profound and positive impact on the communities they serve.
For her work, Missing & Murdered host and investigative reporter Connie Walker also won The Landsberg Award, which celebrates exceptional coverage of women's equality issues. The award is presented by the CJF in association with the Canadian Women's Foundation, which provides the $5,000 prize.
In the small-media category, the Regina Leader-Post and Saskatoon StarPhoenix won the CJF Jackman Excellence in Journalism Award for their joint submission covering the Humboldt Broncos bus crash, including the first 36 hours thereafter.
More than 500 journalists, media executives and business leaders from across the country attended the CJF Awards gala at the Fairmont Royal York in Toronto.
Among the evening's other award winners:
The previously announced Lifetime Achievement Award went to John Honderich, the former Toronto Star editor and publisher and now chair of Torstar Corporation, for a distinguished career committed to integrity and excellence in journalism.
Special CJF honorees this year included Maria Ressa, executive editor and CEO of the Filipino news site, Rappler.com, who received the annual CJF Tribute for her courageous defence of independent journalism in the face of government harassment. Meanwhile, a CJF Special Citation went to Martin Baron, executive editor of The Washington Post, who was recognized for his commitment to the pursuit of truth in an atmosphere of "alternative facts".
The evening's entertainment performances included: singer-songwriter Hannah Georgas, who accompanied the In Memoriam segment; a number from the musical Newsies by the Mainstage Theatre Company; and Seán Cullen, award-winning comedian, who acted as the live announcer. The gala was hosted by Anne-Marie Mediwake, host of CTV's Your Morning.
The CJF Awards thanks the generous support of presenting sponsor Deegan Public Strategies and sponsors Labatt Breweries of Canada, Thomson Reuters, Ivanhoé Cambridge, Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec, General Motors of Canada, Shaw Communications, Medtronic, Rogers, Accenture, CTV News, the Jackman Foundation, Scotiabank, the Facebook Journalism Project and Intact Financial. Thanks also to in-kind supporters The Globe and Mail, Postmedia Network, Toronto Star, The Canadian Press, Cision, Porter Airlines, Bespoke Audio Visual, Coca-Cola Canada and Wine Rack.
About The Canadian Journalism Foundation
Established in 1990, The Canadian Journalism Foundation promotes, celebrates and facilitates excellence in journalism. The foundation runs a prestigious annual awards and fellowships program featuring an industry gala where news leaders, journalists and corporate Canada gather to celebrate outstanding journalistic achievement and the value of professional journalism. Through monthly J-Talks, a public speakers' series, the CJF facilitates dialogue among journalists, business people, academics and students about the role of the media in Canadian society and the ongoing challenges for media in the digital era. The foundation also fosters opportunities for journalism education, training and research.
SOURCE Canadian Journalism Foundation