Thursday, March 15, 2007

National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association to Give Award

Source: National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association
Date: March 13, 2007

WASHINGTON -- On Thursday, March 15, 2007, the National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association (NLGJA) will present its second Leroy F. Aarons Scholarship Award at Headlines & Headliners: NLGJA's 12th Annual New York Benefit, to be held at ABC Times Square Studios. The 2007 award recipient is Colin Dugdale, a third-year journalism student at Indiana University Bloomington.

An Indiana native, Dugdale is a columnist and reporter for the university's award-winning Indiana Daily Student. While at the paper, he has been awarded nine "Best Column" awards and was twice voted "Best Columnist" (Fall 2005 and 2006).

David L. Adams, Indiana University Professor, Director of the Office of Student Media and NLGJA member, says that Dugdale's columns "tackle a number of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) issues with great humor and understanding. I knew Roy Aarons personally; from the time he met with many of us and urged the student press to be more receptive to LGBT issues and coverage. He would have been proud to know Colin and see his work in our student media."

"There is something very empowering about writing," Dugdale says. "That's why I've chosen this profession. At the end of the day I can look at myself in the mirror and know that I've done something that's made a difference. That's journalism."

Named in memory of NLGJA's founder, the $5,000 award was established to support the education of an LGBT student who plans a career in journalism and is committed to furthering NLGJA's mission of fair and accurate coverage of the LGBT community. The fund is administered through a partnership between NLGJA and The Delaware Valley Legacy Fund (a component of The Philadelphia Foundation), which serves to advance philanthropy within the LGBT community. The award will be presented by CNN's "American Morning" anchor Soledad O'Brien. In 2005, CNN contributed a $100,000 gift to support the scholarship award.

O'Brien will be one of a number of special guests joining NLGJA members, friends and supporters at the ABC Times Square Studios. The event will be hosted by ABC News Chief Investigative Correspondent Brian Ross and will feature notables from the worlds of journalism, sports, and entertainment including: former NBA player and Human Rights Campaign Coming Out Project Spokesperson John Amaechi; former World No. 1 tennis player and Co-Founder of the Rainbow Visa Card, Martina Navratilova; Ted Allen and Kyan Douglas of Bravo's "Queer Eye;" Robert Lipsyte of The New York Times; Fox News Anchor Martha MacCallum; Meredith Vieira and Natalie Morales of NBC News' "Today Show;" Erin Moriarty and Russ Mitchell of CBS News; Tim Gunn and Kara Janx of Bravo's "Project Runway;" blogger Andy Towle of; Anchor Jason Bellini from CBS News on LOGO; Carl Quintanilla of CNBC's "Squawk Box;" Barry Rice of Barry Rice Designs; screenwriter and playwright Douglas Carter Beane; and authors Tom Dolby, "The Trouble Boy," and Bob Smith, "Selfish & Perverse."

"For the second year in a row, we have been privileged to select the Aarons Scholarship Award winner from a pool of exceptional student journalists. Seeing the work being done by these students and knowing the work done by the participants in our National Convention Student Projects, it's impossible not to feel confident and optimistic about the future of journalism," said Thomas Cashman Avila, Acting Executive Director of NLGJA.

Avila; Bill Canacci, Home News Tribune and Leroy F. Aarons Journalism Education Program Chair; and Marshall McPeek, WCMH-TV and NLGJA National Secretary oversaw a selection process that included judges Edward Alwood, Quinnipiac University; Dane Claussen, Point Park University; Joe Cutbirth, Columbia University; Robert Dodge, Former Leroy F. Aarons Journalism Education Program Chair; Larry Gross, University of Southern California's Annenberg School for Communication; Mary Gray, Indiana University; Walt Swanston, National Public Radio; and Robyn Goodman, Alfred University.

Headlines & Headliners will begin at 6:30 PM with an intimate VIP reception with the evening's special guests. This will be followed at 7:30 PM with a cocktail reception and a silent auction.

Visit for online ticket sales and further information.


The National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association (NLGJA) is an organization of journalists, media professionals, educators and students who work within the news industry to foster fair and accurate coverage of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender issues. NLGJA opposes all forms of workplace bias and provides professional development to its members.

Headlines & Headliners: NLGJA's 12th Annual New York Benefit is sponsored by the evening's host, ABC News, as well as Belo, CNN, JetBlue Airways, Kimpton Hotels, NBC Universal, Andrew Tobias & Charles Nolan, Bloomberg, CBS News, In Style, MGM Mirage, Passport Magazine, Rubenstein Communications, The Muse Hotel, 70 Park Avenue Hotel, Fox News Network, Newsday, Inc., Star/Rosen PR, Greater Philadelphia Tourism Marketing Corporation, Hill + Knowlton, The Haworth Press, The New York Times, The Star-Ledger, The Record, Herald News and Toyota.

CONTACT: Jason Lloyd Clement of the National Lesbian & Gay Journalists
Association, Office: 202-588-9888, ext. 12, Mobile: 202-386-2645,