Wow. What another inspiring night at our recent Excellence in Journalism – North Texas Legends Awards on June 9th at the Sixth Floor Museum. Congratulations to the 13 inductees. You can read more about the event and the esteemed journalists in this newsletter.
We also made a special announcement that evening - it’s been more than a decade since the Press Club has had a juried awards competition. Yes, it’s been too long.
The actions of one rogue person does not define our club. We define our club, and we are going to give it new definition and new purpose. We have new momentum. We have new energy, and now we are announcing a new, exclusive awards program.
We all know what the Edward R. Murrow award stands for. The award has the weight of one of the most respected and revered journalists behind it. It stands for greatness.
The Press Club's Award Program will be focused on excellence in investigative journalism and be awarded to one reporter based on their submissions of a body of work. The Board of Directors will work over the next few months to define the awards program, announce it, and seek nominations. And in future years, we very likely will expand the number of categories, which currently includes print, broadcast, radio and online media.
But we begin with this first step, and we are very fortunate to have someone among us whose name and work represents greatness. This new award will be called the "Hugh Aynesworth Award for Excellence in Investigative Journalism".
Goodbye Katie – Hello Hughey! As we hope it will be affectionately nicknamed.
Hugh Aynesworth has been a journalist for more than 65 years, and a member of the Press Club of Dallas since 1960. He has worked at both The Dallas Morning News and Dallas Times Herald — as well as at Newsweek, The Washington Times, UPI, The Arkansas Gazette and ABC News’ (20/20).
He is the author of two books on the JFK assassination, co-author of 2 books on Ted Bundy as well as another 4 books on various crime scenarios.
While Hugh has done far more than covering the Kennedy assassination, he is of course best-known for that. As Bob Schieffer said, “No one knows more about the assassination than Hugh Aynesworth. While others have peddled lies, spun conspiracy theories and offered outlandish speculation, Hugh has always stuck to the facts. Just the facts.
He is the only journalist eyewitness to the three seminal events… the assassination, the arrest of Oswald, and the shooting of Oswald. He also uncovered the escape route, broke the story about Oswald’s threatening letter to the FBI 10 days before the assassination and somehow slipped Oswald’s Russian Diaries to Life Magazine.
Hugh also is a 4 time Pulitzer Finalist and a winner of more than 90 local, state and national awards (including an Emmy last year for a documentary featuring 27 persons connected with the JFK assassination).
He is a former president of the club and former president of the Texas chapter of Sigma Delta Chi. He and Paula Aynesworth, of KERA, have been married 29 years this month.
Hugh received the first award which bears his name. Like I said, he represents greatness. This award will be momentous and be meaningful to its future recipients. You’ll be hearing more about the competition in the coming months.
Thanks for your membership,