Public Media Journalists Association Awards

PMJA is a champion for journalistic excellence in the vibrant landscape of public media. Every year, PMJA celebrates the outstanding work of journalists who inform, engage, and empower communities through their dedication and skill. At the heart of this recognition are three prestigious awards programs: the Annual Awards competition, the Leo C. Lee Award, and the Editor of the Year.

The Annual Awards Competition:

This competition is a celebration of excellence across a vast spectrum of journalistic endeavors. From hard-hitting investigative reports to captivating long-form documentaries, feature reports on a wide variety of topics to innovative digital projects, and everything in between, the PMJA Awards recognize the diverse skill sets that bring public service journalism to life. Awards allow journalists and news organizations of all levels and sizes to be showcased for their dedication and talent. Winning an award is not just an accolade, it's a validation of the essential role these journalists play in holding powerful institutions accountable, giving voice to marginalized communities, and sparking important conversations.

The Leo C. Lee Award:

Named after the pioneering public radio leader Leo C. Lee, this prestigious award honors extraordinary contributions to the field of public media journalism. It recognizes individuals and organizations who have not only excelled in their own practice but who have also dedicated themselves to advancing the industry as a whole. From mentoring young journalists to fostering ethical standards, recipients of the Leo C. Lee Award embody the essence of public service journalism, making it a powerful testament to enduring commitment.

The Editor of the Year:

Leadership and vision are the cornerstones of any successful media organization. The Editor of the Year award recognizes an individual who has not only excelled in their own work but has also fostered a culture of journalistic integrity, innovation, and collaboration within their station. This award honors the vital role editors play in shaping the voice and direction of public media, ensuring that it remains a trusted source of information and inspiration for audiences across the nation.

Why are these awards important?

The PMJA awards are more than just trophies on a shelf. They represent a vital ecosystem of recognition, support, and connection within the public media community. They:

  • Celebrate and elevate exceptional journalism: By recognizing outstanding work, the awards inspire others to strive for similar levels of quality and impact.
  • Promote diversity and inclusion: Recognize the contributions of journalists from all backgrounds and perspectives, enriching the public discourse.
  • Strengthen public media: By highlighting impactful journalism, the awards affirm the vital role public media plays in a democratic society.
  • Foster collaboration and mentorship: The awards bring together journalists from across the country, creating opportunities for networking and knowledge-sharing.

In a world saturated with information, the Public Media Journalists Association awards hold a unique and essential role. They stand as a testament to the power of storytelling, the importance of journalistic integrity, and the unwavering commitment of those who dedicate their lives to keeping the public informed and engaged. By recognizing and celebrating excellence, these awards ensure that the vital beacon of public media continues to shine brightly, illuminating the path towards a more informed and connected world.