Pulitzer prizes

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Alumni

Barry Bearak

(1949– ) received the 2002 Pulitzer Prize in International Reporting for his coverage of daily life in war-ravaged Afghanistan. Bearak pursued graduate studies in journalism at the University of Illinois and earned his Master of Science in 1974.

Michael Colgrass

(1932– ) won the 1978 Pulitzer Prize in Music for his piece, Deja Vu for Percussion Quartet and Orchestra, which was commissioned and premiered by the New York Philharmonic. He received his University of Illinois Bachelor of Music degree in 1956.

George Crumb

(1929– ) received the 1968 Pulitzer Prize in Music for Echoes of Time and the River, commissioned to celebrate the 75th anniversary of the University of Chicago. Crumb received his University of Illinois Master of Music degree in 1952.

David Herbert Donald

(1920 – 2009 ) has twice won the Pulitzer Prize in Biography: in 1961 for Charles Sumner and the Coming of the Civil War and in 1988 for Look Homeward: A Life of Thomas Wolfe. Donald pursued graduate studies in history at the University of Illinois, receiving a Master of Arts in 1942 and a Ph.D. in 1946.

Roger Ebert

(1942–2013) won the first-ever Pulitzer Prize in Criticism in 1975 for his work as film critic for the Chicago Sun-Times. Ebert graduated from the University of Illinois with a Bachelor of Science in 1964.

Roy J. Harris

(1902–1980) shared the 1950 Pulitzer Prize in Public Service with fellow University of Illinois alumnus George Thiem. Their work exposed the presence of 37 Illinois newspapermen on an Illinois state payroll. Harris received a University of Illinois Bachelor of Arts in 1925.

Beth Henley

(1952– ) won the 1981 Pulitzer Prize in Drama for her play Crimes of the Heart. Henley pursued graduate studies in theatre at the University of Illinois in the 1970s.

Hugh F. Hough

(1924–1986) shared the 1974 Pulitzer Prize for Local General Spot News Reporting with fellow University of Illinois alumnus Arthur M. Petacque for uncovering new evidence that led to the reopening of efforts to solve the 1966 murder case of Illinois Sen. Charles Percy’s daughter. Hough received a University of Illinois Bachelor of Science in 1951.

Paul Ingrassia

(1950–) shared the 1993 Pulitzer Prize for Beat Reporting for coverage of management turmoil at General Motors Corp. He earned a Bachelor of Science degree from the University in 1972.

Monroe Karmin

(1929–1967) shared the 1967 Pulitzer Prize for National Reporting for his part in exposing the connection between U.S. crime and gambling in the Bahamas. Karmin received a University of Illinois Bachelor of Science in 1950.

John J. Kim

(1974– ) shared the 2011 Pulitzer Prize for Local Reporting (Chicago Sun-Times) for his photography in an immersive documentation of violence in Chicago neighborhoods, probing the lives of victims, criminals and detectives as a widespread code of silence impedes solutions. He earned a Bachelor of Science in advertising from the U. of I. in 1997.

Allan Nevins

(1890–1971) received the Pulitzer Prize in Biography twice: in 1933 for Grover Cleveland and in 1937 for Hamilton Fish. Nevins earned his Bachelor of Arts in 1912 and his Master of Arts in 1913, both from the University of Illinois.

Arthur M. Petacque

(1924–2001) shared the 1974 Pulitzer Prize for Local General Spot News Reporting with fellow University of Illinois alumnus Hugh Hough. Their work in uncovering new evidence led to a reopening the 1966 murder case of Valerie Percy. Petacque attended the University of Illinois in the 1940s.

James B. Reston

(1909–1995) received the Pulitzer Prize for National Reporting in 1945 and 1957 as a reporter for the New York Times. He earned a Bachelor of Science in 1932.

Robert Lewis Taylor

(1910–1998) won the 1959 Pulitzer Prize in Fiction for his book The Travails of Jaimie McPheeters. He graduated with a Bachelor of Arts from the University in 1933.

George Thiem

(1897–1987) shared the 1950 Pulitzer Prize for Public Service with fellow University of Illinois alumnus Roy J. Harris for his part in exposing the presence of 37 Illinois newspapermen on an Illinois state payroll. Thiem earned a University of Illinois Bachelor of Science in 1921.

Carl Van Doren

(1885–1950) won the 1939 Pulitzer Prize in Biography for his book Benjamin Franklin. He graduated from the University in 1907 with a Bachelor of Arts.

Mark Van Doren

(1894–1972) received the 1940 Pulitzer Prize in Poetry for his work Collected Poems, 1922–1938. He received a University of Illinois Bachelor of Arts in 1914.

Abe Zaidan

(1931-) shared the 1971 Pulitzer Prize for Local Reporting as a member of the staff of the Akron (Ohio) Beacon Journal. The paper was honored for its coverage of the Kent State University tragedy on May 4, 1970. He received a U. of I. Bachelor of Science in 1953.

Faculty

Bill Gaines (Emeritus)

(1933– ) shared in two Pulitzer Prizes in Investigative Reporting (1976 and 1988). Gaines joined the University of Illinois faculty in 2001 and was the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation Chair in Investigative and Enterprise Journalism until his retirement.

Leon Dash

(1944– ) shared the 1995 Pulitzer Prize in Explanatory Journalism for his work on a family’s struggle with poverty, illiteracy, crime, and drug abuse in Washington, D.C. Dash became a University of Illinois faculty member in 1998 and is a Swanlund Chair and professor of journalism and Afro-American Studies.

University High School

George F. Will

(1941– ) won the 1977 Pulitzer Prize for Commentary for his work as a syndicated columnist. He graduated from University High School in 1958.

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