Barbara Jordan Media Awards Winners Announced

April 13, 2018 | Austin, Texas | Press Release

The Governor’s Committee on People with Disabilities today announced the winners of the 35th annual Barbara Jordan Media Awards for media content produced in 2017. The awards are given to media professionals and students who have produced material for the public which accurately and positively reports on individuals with disabilities, using People First language and respectful depictions. The winners were selected by a panel of judges consisting of journalists, professionals in the field of disabilities, and individuals with disabilities.

"These awards are named after a remarkable woman who had the courage to fight, break down barriers, and build opportunities for those with disabilities," said Governor Abbott. "The work done by the winners of this year’s award reflect her spirit of inclusion, and have helped remind us all that our lives are not measured by the challenges we face; instead, our lives are measured by how we respond to those challenges. I congratulate these awardees and hope they will continue to inspire."

The award winners will be honored at a ceremony hosted by the Texas State University School of Journalism and Mass Communication on Thursday, April 26, 2018. The Governor's Committee welcomes and encourages members of the public to attend this free event.

The winners of this year’s Barbara Jordan Media Awards are:

Broadcast Entertainment:
Quintin Blackwell, Dan Stricklin, Kelli Phillips, and Bob Phillips for Texas Country Reporter
Love Hears

Broadcast Feature:
David Chancellor, WOAI-TV, News 4 San Antonio
Can’t Stop Won’t Stop

Print Feature:
David Burge, El Paso Times
Sports help wounded warriors move forward, heal

Print News:
Brentney Hamilton, The Dallas Morning News
Meet the best friends and first residents in a special-needs community for adults in D-FW

Print Lifestyle/Entertainment:
Suzanne Garofalo, Houston Chronicler
He’s got the chops

Print Commentary:
Emily Goldstein, freelance writer for The Dallas Morning News
How electroconvulsive therapy eased my depression and returned me to my life

Paul Flahive, Texas Public Radio, San Antonio
Virtual reality sharks nab professor $240,000 grant

Sarah A. Miller, Tyler Morning Telegraph
Sheltering the silent

College Student:
Richard Marmolejo, The Collegian, Hurst
Theater instructor turns diagnosis into artwork

College Student - Honorable Mention:
Amanda Heileman, The University Star, Texas State University
What students with wheelchairs experience on campus

Editors Sheila Black, Annabelle Hayse and Michael Northen, Cinco Puntos Press, El Paso
The Right Way to be Crippled & Naked: The Fiction of Disability

Children’s Book:
Julie Coy Maniér, author; Grant Maniér, illustrator, Houston
Grant the Jigsaw Giraffe: Different is More!

The awards are named in honor of Barbara Jordan, a Houston native and U.S. Congresswoman who gained recognition and a place of honor in history. She was known as a remarkable orator who broke barriers and built bridges. Jordan received the Presidential Medal of Freedom and served for one day in 1972 as the Governor of Texas (both Governor Preston Smith and Lt. Gov. Ben Barnes were out of state). In 1973, Jordan was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, and eventually began to use a cane and then a wheelchair. Jordan passed away in 1996. She was inducted into the Texas Women's Hall of Fame in 1984.

For more information on the awards ceremony, please contact the Texas Governor’s Committee on People with Disabilities at (512) 463-5739.