About the Awards
Each year the Governor’s Committee on People with Disabilities, in conjunction with local committees throughout the state, accepts nominations for media professionals and students who have produced material for the public which accurately and positively reports on individuals with disabilities, using People First language and respectful depictions.
A panel of judges, including media professionals and people with disabilities, score the entries and collectively select the winners. Each year the decisions for the judges become more difficult as more quality entries are received in the categories of Print Feature, Print News, Photojournalism, TV Feature, TV Documentary, Special Contribution by an Organization, Internet, etc.
The Barbara Jordan Media Awards are named in honor of the Houston native and U.S. congresswoman who gained recognition and a place of honor in history. She was known as a remarkable orator who broke barriers and built bridges. She received the Presidential Medal of Freedom and served for one day in 1972 as the Governor of Texas (both Governor Preston Smith and Lt. Governor Ben Barnes were out of state). In 1973, Jordan was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, and eventually began to use a cane and then a wheelchair. Barbara Jordan passed away in 1996. The Barbara Jordan Media Award itself is a beautiful three-inch bronze medallion designed by David Deming, an internationally prominent sculptor, and is presented to winners in several categories each year at an awards ceremony hosted by one of the many local committees throughout the state. For more information, please visit the official site.
Zach Anner will be the keynote speaker for the Barbara Jordan Award Ceremony. Anner is a stand-up comedian with cerebral palsy and lives in Austin. He gained world-wide attention after submitting a video to Oprah's "Search for the Next TV Star" competition and winning his own TV show on OWN. Zach Anner's show is a wheelchair travel show, called “Rollin' With Zach” and premiered December 12, 2011.
Pam LeBlanc, Austin American-Statesman
Lara Solt, Dallas Morning News
PRINT FEATURE SERIES
|TV DOCUMENTARY |
Jen Ohlsen & Arnold Payne, Pathway Productions
|TV FEATURE |
Shane McAuliffe, KBTX-TV, Bryan, TX
|TV FEATURE EXTENDED |
Matt Barrie, Noah Bullard, Peter Hull, KXAS-TV, Ft. Worth, TX