David Burke Distinguished Journalism Awards
The Burke Awards, named after BBG founding chairman David W. Burke, recognize courage, integrity and professionalism in reporting among journalists working for U.S. international media.
The journalists recognized have faced personal risk to bring stories from and about some of the world’s most dangerous and press-restrictive places—Yemen, Crimea, Cambodia, Cuba, and Afghanistan.
2016 marks the 15th year the awards have been presented.
“These journalists have exemplified the definition of bravery and courage by risking their lives to report from some of the most dangerous places in the world,” said John Lansing, BBG Chief Executive Officer and Director. “Today we recognize their accomplishments as well as their commitment to providing BBG audiences with news that is honest, accurate, and free of bias.”
2016 recipients include:
- Ayesha Tanzeem, Voice of America’s Islamabad Bureau Chief, in recognition of her extended reporting trip that tested her courage, her planning and her knowledge of Afghanistan’s culture, politics and security threats.
- Tomas Cardoso, from the Office of Cuba Broadcasting, for his coverage of the case of Emmanuel Abreu for Radio Martí’s daily show Cuba al Día.
- The Staff of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty Crimean Unit (Krym.Realii), for their rich, mission-driven work conducted under increasingly hostile circumstances.
- Vuthy Khim Huot of Radio Free Asia’s Khmer Service, of his exceptional coverage of sensitive issues at great personal risk as a reporter in Cambodia.
- Arafat Mudabesh, Abdul Kareem Shaibany, and Mokhtar El-Sharafi from the Middle East Broadcasting Network, for their bravery and integrity to impart news and information to serve the public across the Middle East and North Africa.
In 2016 BBG journalists, producers and other staff were honored with professional awards from around the world.
Below, browse the numerous achievements, sort by network or platform, and click through to read more about each award-winning work:
Journalist Kubanychbek Joldoshev was named 2016 Journalist of the Year by the Committee for Protection of Press Freedom in Kyrgyzstan.
The Kazakh Service’s website won second place in the Best Bilingual Website category of the Kazakh National Internet Awards.
RFE/RL journalist Halina Abakunchyk was recognized by the Belarusian Association NGOs of Belarus for her coverage of Belarus’ civil society in 2016.
Thailand-based stringer Aye Aye Mar was honored by the Royal family of Thailand with the “Prachabdi Award” for Human Rights and Humanitarian Efforts.
RFE/RL photojournalist Amos Chapple was recognized by the science journal, Nature, for a photograph from the multimedia essay, “The Mammoth Pirates.”
Mykhailo Tkach was awarded the Triumph Award in the category “Best Reporter of 2016.”
Natalie Sedletska, the host of popular show “Schemes,” was honored by the Kyiv Post.
The dissident journalist received the award in absentia for his work in Crimea.
Natalia Sergheevand and Alexander Blumberg were awarded the 2016 Young ADAMI Media Prize.
Kathleen Struck received the fall semester’s highest honor for their teamwork and mentorship
The Republic of Poland recognized Valery Kalinousky for his work documenting Polish-Belarusian history and relations.
The RFE/RL Crimea.Realities contributor was honored by the National Union of Journalists of Ukraine (NUJU).
“The Landmine Man” was shortlisted in the Best Radio Journalism category at the annual awards.
The Africa Division’s newest digital interactive won second place in the data visualization category.
MBN’s documentary series won the Silver Award in the category of Best Current Affairs, Human Concerns & Social Issues Documentary.
Pablito, El Fan #1 de La Pelota en Cuba was nominated for a 2016 Suncoast Regional Emmy Award in the Interactivity category.
The network was nominated for a 2016 Suncoast Regional Emmy Award in the category of Promotion-News Promo-Image
Karen Caballero was nominated for her work on La Vida Por el Arte, en Libertad.
The nomination came under the Continuing Coverage–No Time Limit category of the Suncoast Regional Emmy Awards.
The responsive site was honored in the category of Website/News.
The Making of the Constitution was awarded a Finalist Certificate as an educational interactive.
The RFE/RL contributor was awarded the Jubilee Anniversary Medal by President Petro Poroshenko.
The Africa Division journalist is the 2016 recipient of the Peter Mackler Award.
VOA reporter Chris Simkins’ report introduces civil rights leaders who were on the front lines in the struggle for voting rights in 1965.
The promotional video for the critically acclaimed series Delusional Paradise won the honor at the International Television & Film Awards.
Breaking Free was selected in the Best Online News category of the New York Festivals’ International Radio Programming Awards.
Reporter Kane Farabaugh was recognized for his work at the 2016 Chesapeake Associated Press Broadcasters Association Awards.
Aizada Kutueva, a reporter and correspondent for the Central Asian Newswire in Bishkek, was recognized for her reporting on corruption.
RFE/RL’s Kyrgyz Service correspondent Ulanbek Egizbaev produced a report about a teenage boy who is unable to use his legs.
The Moldovan Service’s Vasile Botnaru was recognized for his journalistic work for his contributions to strengthening community, language, and social ties across the Romania-Moldova border.
Jimsher Rekhviashvili received the 2016 Litera Prize in the “Best Novel/Collection of Stories” category from the Georgian Ministry of Culture and Monument Protection.
A Single Step: Journeys of Women Leaders was recognized in the World’s Best TV & Films competition.
MBN’s flagship television program was honored in the Human Interest category for the segment titled “Man Tries to Sell His Daughter.”
Alhurra Television’s magazine program honored for the segment titled “Art and the Syrian Revolution.”
The online series on human trafficking in Asia was selected in the Best Online News category in June.
MBN’s flagship Alhurra Television program was honored in the Heroes category for Documentary/Information programs.
The Radio Sawa journalist was recognized for his coverage of the ongoing ISIS/ISIL news in the Reports/Features category.
Desperate Honeymoon won in the Magazine Format/Information Program category.
An episode of the MBN platform’s program aired an episode titled “Arab Refugee Crisis” which won a finalist certificate at the International Radio Programs Awards.
The video documentary won at the 2016 New York Festivals International Television and Film Awards.
Journey 1945: China’s Path to Victory was recognized as a History & Society entry in the Documentary/Information Program category.
Ahmad Hanayesh was awarded a certificate of appreciation and a Freedom Of Speech Award
Radio Azadi journalist Nazeefa Mahboobi was honored with two Best Reflection of the Situation on the Ground Awards for three investigative reports published in 2015.
Imprisoned Azerbaijani investigative reporter and RFE/RL contributor Khadija Ismayilova was named the 2016 recipient of the UNESCO/Guillermo Cano World Press Freedom Prize
President Mohammad Ghani presented the journalist with the Allama Sayed Jamaluddin Afghan Prestigious State Medal.
The journalist from the network’s Kyrgyz service, known locally as Radio Azattyk, won first place for a television program at the “Access to Justice” contest.
The RFE/RL journalist received a promotional jury prize for radio at the “Access to Justice” contest for outstanding human rights and public service reporting.