SIOUX CITY | Washington Post Executive Editor Martin Baron will receive the Al Neuharth Award for Excellence in the Media in 2017.

The award will be presented to Baron on June 19 at the Newseum in Washington, D.C., by the University of South Dakota, the Freedom Forum, and the Newseum Institute.

“USD is proud to join the Newseum Institute in honoring Marty Baron,” University of South Dakota President James W. Abbott said in a Friday release.

“His success in guiding journalistic investigations of important public issues exemplifies the qualities we teach aspiring journalists through the Department of Media and Journalism and the Al Neuharth Media Center.”

Baron has been executive editor of The Washington Post since January 2013. Prior to that, he was editor at The Boston Globe from 2001 to 2012.

Baron's investigative team coverage of the sexual abuse scandal in the Catholic archdiocese of Boston earned the Globe a Pulitzer Prize. The story about the newspaper investigation was featured in the 2015 movie "Spotlight," which won the Academy Award for Best Picture and Best Original Screenplay.

Neuharth, a South Dakota native, graduated in 1950 from USD, which is home to the Al Neuharth Media Center. Media mogul Neuharth, who founded USA TODAY, died in 2013 at the age of 89. 

The Neuharth award continues following his death, but in a different format. The award ceremony was formerly held on the USD campus during Dakota Days homecoming weekend.

Baron will be the 31st person to receive the Award for Excellence, which honors lifetime achievement in the media industry. Legendary CBS News anchor Walter Cronkite was the first selection.

Since Baron became executive editor of the Post in 2013, the paper has won numerous awards for coverage, including Pulitzer Prizes for its reporting on killings by police officers, security lapses at the Secret Service, and secret surveillance programs by the National Security Agency.


County and education reporter

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