Louis M. Lyons Award for Conscience and Integrity in Journalism

Nieman Fellows in the class of 2013 have selected Mexican journalist Marcela Turati as winner of the Louis M. Lyons Award for Conscience and Integrity in Journalism.  A reporter for the newsmagazine Proceso, Turati was chosen for
Marcela Turati
her courageous coverage of the drug war in Mexico and her role in protecting and training members of the media.

The class called Turati “a standard-bearer for the journalists who have risked their lives to document the devastating wave of violence in Mexico.” They also cited the bravery she and other Mexicans have shown while covering crime and the drug war’s victims at a time when Mexico has become one of the most dangerous countries in the world for journalists.

In 2007, Turati co-founded Periodistas de a Pie, a journalism network created to support reporters covering issues such as poverty, civic participation and human rights. As the war against drug traffickers intensified, the organization switched its focus to support reporters covering the conflict and to defend freedom of speech. The network began to train journalists in ethics, personal safety, cyber security and caring for their own emotional well-being. It also encouraged journalists to organize more networks to protect themselves and their stories.

Turati has said that her greatest challenge has been “how to write about violence without letting people get used to it, how to maintain permanent indignation with each news story.”

The Louis Lyons award will be presented to Turati during an event at the Nieman Foundation for Journalism at Harvard on Feb. 7, 2013.

The Nieman class of 1964 established the Louis M. Lyons Award in honor of the Nieman Foundation curator who retired that year after leading the institution for a quarter of a century. Lyons was a forceful advocate for freedom of the press. While he was curator of the Nieman Foundation, he broke new ground by diversifying the class of fellows to include women, minorities, and international fellows. The award honors displays of conscience and integrity by individuals, groups or institutions in communications. The winner is chosen each year by the members of the Nieman class.