Newswise — Western Kentucky University will honor nearly two dozen alumni of the School of Journalism and Broadcasting who have been part of Pulitzer Prize winning teams with a reception and dinner on Oct. 29.

The event will begin at 6 p.m. in Mass Media and Technology Hall, the $18.5 million building that houses WKU's award-winning journalism and broadcasting program and the University's Information Technology division.

The evening's program will include a video presentation of award recipients, the unveiling of a Pulitzer Wall of Fame and a dinner with WKU President Gary Ransdell, members of the Board of Regents and invited guests.

"We look at this event as a way to applaud our alumni and to encourage our students," said Pam Johnson, director of the School of Journalism and Broadcasting. "The Alumni Pulitzer Wall of Fame will also be an effective recruitment tool."

WKU alumni have been a part of 13 Pulitzer Prize winning projects " nine for photography, one for general news and three for public service.

"Three of our photojournalism faculty traveled across the country to interview all of our Pulitzer winners," Johnson said. "Leading the team was Tim Broekema who has won a Pulitzer."

In the past five years, alumni of WKU's photojournalism program have been part of teams that won five Pulitzer Prizes. Those are Cheryl Diaz Meyer of the Dallas Morning News in 2004 for the war in Iraq; Barry Gutierrez, Marc Piscotty and Mark Osler of the Rocky Mountain News in 2003 for Colorado wildfires; David Frank and Kelly Guenther of the New York Times in 2002 for 9-11 attack; David Frank of the New York Times in 2002 for Afghanistan; and Marc Piscotty of the Rocky Mountain News in 2000 for the Columbine shootings.

Eleven alumni were part of the Courier-Journal team that won a 1989 Pulitzer for coverage of the Carrollton bus crash. Team members included Tom Beshear, Tim Broekema, Todd Buchanan, Al Cross, Valerie Elmore, Kim Kolarik, Mary Ann Lyons Gerth, Bill Luster, Steve Russell Paul Schumann and Sam Upshaw Jr.

Other members of Pulitzer Prize winning teams include Scott Applewhite in 1993 and 1999 for photography for The Associated Press; Tom Patterson in 1986 for public service with The Denver Post; Todd Buchanan in 1985 for photography with the Orange County (Calif.) Register; David Frank and Mark Lyons in 1983 for public service for the Jackson (Miss.) Clarion-Ledger; Bill Luster, Paul Schuhmann and William Strode in 1976 for photography with the Courier-Journal; and Strode in 1967 for public service with the Courier-Journal.

For information about the event, contact the School of Journalism and Broadcasting at (270) 745-4143. More information on the recipients is available at

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