News & Ideas  -  Kettering Foundation Awards Fellowship to Judy Woodruff

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Fanning Fellowship to support Woodruff’s reporting on American polarization

Fanning Fellowship to support Woodruff’s reporting on American polarization

The Charles F. Kettering Foundation is awarding its Katherine W. Fanning Fellowship in Journalism and Democracy to Judy Woodruff, senior correspondent and former anchor and managing editor of the PBS NewsHour. A distinguished journalist for more than five decades, Woodruff is nationally recognized for her integrity, reporting and media leadership. She is the recipient of numerous awards, among them a Peabody Journalistic Integrity Award and an Emmy Lifetime Achievement Award. She has received 25 honorary degrees.

In January, Woodruff stepped away from her anchor duties to devote 2023 and 2024 to a new reporting project, “Judy Woodruff Presents: America at a Crossroads,” trying to understand our country better and probing why Americans seem so divided. She will also do a series of reports on challenges facing people with disabilities. Her project is in line with the goals of the Kettering Foundation’s Fanning Fellowship, which is awarded to journalists and scholars of journalism from the US and abroad to explore the role of journalism in strengthening a democratic society. The award is named for the late Katherine W. “Kay” Fanning, who was the editor and publisher of the Anchorage Daily News and editor of the Christian Science Monitor. Fanning served on the Kettering Foundation Board of Directors for a dozen years.

“Communication despite differences is critical to the health of our democracy,” said Woodruff. “I am grateful and honored to accept this fellowship in the name of Kay Fanning, whom I looked up to as a pioneering woman journalist. This will support my work as I interview Americans across the country concerning what divides us and, just as important, how we can come together.”

“The Kettering Foundation is delighted to recognize Judy Woodruff as its 2023-2024 Fanning Fellow,” said Sharon L. Davies, Kettering Foundation President and CEO. “A free press surfaces information citizens need to participate in public life, which is critical to the health of democracy. Judy Woodruff is internationally known for her thoughtful, in-depth, and balanced reporting. In these contentious times, her work has never been more important, and we are proud to support it.”