As rain came down Sunday outside the New Jersey Performing Arts Center in Newark, I watched as two Drew Magazine writers, Christopher Hann and John T. Ward, received accolades at NJSPJ’s annual awards luncheon.
Hann’s Spring 2009 feature, “On the Inside,” won first place in the Magazine Feature and Profile Writing category. For the article, Hann followed a new undergraduate class for both Drew students and inmates at the Edna Mahan Correctional Facility in Clinton, N.J., the brainchild of Associate Professor Kesha Moore.
“The Day She Should Have Died,” Ward’s Winter 2009 article, took second place in the same category. Ward told the story of Fay Malkin, a Holocaust survivor and member of the board of Drew’s Center for Holocaust/Genocide Studies, who nearly died while hidden above a pigsty in Ukraine during the Holocaust.
While winning awards is always appealing, the highlight of the afternoon was the keynote by Philadelphia Daily News reporter Wendy Ruderman about her career as a journalist and her recent Pulitzer Prize for investigative reporting. Ruderman spoke candidly about exposing the Philadelphia Narcotics Field Unit, and her encounter with Thomas Trantino, the notorious Jersey cop killer. Ruderman spoke so colorfully, in fact, that Drew Magazine Editor Renée Olson’s 11-year-old son, who also attended the luncheon, took to counting the expletives in her speech.—Thomas Carr, editorial intern, Drew Magazine