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Pulitzer Prizes in journalism awarded to The New York Times, The Washington Post, AP and others

May 5, 2024, 9:03 PM | Updated: May 6, 2024, 7:38 pm

NEW YORK (AP) — The New York Times and The Washington Post were awarded three Pulitzer Prizes apiece on Monday for work in 2023 that dealt with everything from the war in Gaza to gun violence, and The Associated Press won in the feature photography category for coverage of global migration to the U.S.

Hamas’ Oct. 7 attack on Israel and its aftermath produced work that resulted in two Pulitzers and a special citation. The Times won for text coverage that the Pulitzer board described as “wide-ranging and revelatory,” while the Reuters news service won for its photography. The citation went to journalists and other writers covering the war in Gaza.

The prestigious public service award went to ProPublica for reporting that “pierced the thick wall of secrecy” around the U.S. Supreme Court to show how billionaires gave expensive gifts to justices and paid for luxury travel. Reporters Joshua Kaplan, Justin Elliott, Brett Murphy, Alex Mierjeski and Kirsten Berg were honored for their work.

The Pulitzers honored the best in journalism from 2023 in 15 categories, as well as eight arts categories focused on books, music and theater. The public service winner receives a gold medal. All other winners receive $15,000.

The 15 photos in AP’s winning entry were taken across Latin America and along the U.S.-Mexico border in Texas and California in a year when immigration was one of the world’s biggest stories. They were shot by AP staffers Greg Bull, Eric Gay, Fernando Llano, Marco Ugarte and Eduardo Verdugo, and longtime AP freelancers Christian Chavez, Felix Marquez and Ivan Valencia.

“These raw and emotional images came about through day-to-day coverage of a historic moment in multiple countries documenting migrants at every step of their treacherous journeys,” said Julie Pace, the AP’s senior vice president and executive editor.

The United States has seen more than 10 million border arrivals in the last five years, with migrants arriving from a wide range of new locations like Venezuela, Cuba, Ecuador, Haiti and African countries, in contrast with earlier eras.

The AP has won 59 Pulitzer Prizes, including 36 for photography. The news cooperative was named a finalist for the national reporting Pulitzer on Monday for its coverage of hundreds of thousands of children who disappeared from public schools during the pandemic.

In citing the Times for its work in Israel and Gaza, the Pulitzer board mentioned its coverage of the country’s intelligence failures, along with the attack and Israel’s military response.

The award comes even as The Times has faced some controversy about its coverage; last month a group of journalism professors called on the publication to address questions about an investigation into gender-based violence during the Hamas attack on Israel.

The Times’ Hannah Dreier won a Pulitzer in investigative reporting for her stories on migrant child labor across the United States. Contributing writer Katie Engelhart won the newspaper’s third Pulitzer, in feature writing, for her portrait of a family struggling with a matriarch’s dementia.

“Every one of the winners and finalists showcases a drive for original, revelatory reporting that underpins so much of what we produce, from the biggest storylines in the news to feature writing as well as classic investigations,” said Joe Kahn, the Times’ executive editor.

The Washington Post staff won in national reporting for its “sobering examination” of the AR-15 semi-automatic rifle, which came with some gut-wrenching photos. “We were eager to find a way to cover it differently and change the conversation about mass shootings,” Peter Walstein, the Post’s senior national enterprise editor, said in the newspaper.

The Post’s David E. Hoffman won in editorial writing for a “compelling and well-researched” series on how authoritarian regimes repress dissent in the digital age. Its third award went to contributor Vladimir Kara-Murza, for commentaries written from a Russian prison cell.

The New Yorker magazine won two Pulitzers. Sarah Stillman won in explanatory reporting for her report on the legal system’s reliance on felony murder charges. Contributor Medar de la Cruz won in illustrated reporting and commentary for his story humanizing inmates in the Rikers Island jail in New York City.

The staff of Lookout Santa Cruz in California won in the breaking news category for what the prize board called “nimble community-minded coverage” of flooding and mudslides. On its website Monday, Lookout Santa Cruz said that it made its coverage free at a time of crisis in the community, and also used text messages to reach people without power.

“In short, we did our jobs,” the staff said in an unsigned article, “and we heard so many thanks for it. The Pulitzer is icing on that cake.”

The Pulitzers gave a second award in national reporting to the Reuters staff for an “eye-opening” series that probed Elon Musk’s automobile and aerospace businesses.

In local reporting, Sarah Conway of City Bureau and Trina Reynolds-Tyler of the Invisible Institute won for an investigative series on missing Black girls and women in Chicago, which showed how racism and the police contributed to the problem.

The Pulitzer in criticism went to Justin Chang of The Los Angeles Times for evocative and genre-spanning coverage of movies. The Pulitzer board’s second special citation went to the late hip-hop critic Greg Tate.

The awards are administered by Columbia University in New York, which itself has been in the news for student demonstrations against the war in Gaza. The Pulitzer board met away from Columbia this past weekend to deliberate on its winners.

The Pulitzers announced that five of the 45 finalists this year used artificial intelligence in research and reporting of their submissions. It was the first time the board required applicants for the award to disclose use of AI.

The prizes were established in the will of newspaper publisher Joseph Pulitzer and first awarded in 1917.

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David Bauder writes about media for The Associated Press. Follow him at http://twitter.com/dbauder.

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Pulitzer Prizes in journalism awarded to The New York Times, The Washington Post, AP and others