FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Wednesday, October 18, 2023
PRESS CONTACT: Kenrick Thomas email@example.com
Washington, D.C. – Today, the Washington Association of Black Journalists (WABJ) announced that Sonya Ross, founder and editor-in-chief of Black Women Unmuted, is the recipient of the 2023 WABJ Legacy Award.
This award recognizes a current or retired Black journalist or journalism educator in the Washington, D.C. area who has broken barriers and/or provided distinguished leadership in increasing access and opportunities to people of color in journalism. Ross will be honored at the WABJ Special Honors & Scholarship Gala on Saturday, Dec. 2 at Armour J. Blackburn University Center on the campus of Howard University. Tickets for the gala can be purchased here.
“Ross’ expansive career reporting and managing coverage, including 33 years at the Associated Press where she became the outlet’s first Black woman White House correspondent, set her apart as a political journalist who would often shed light on the impact legislation has on race. She even urged the AP to create a race beat significant enough for team coverage,” said the WABJ Awards Review Committee.
“Ross also was instrumental in the formation of the Political Task Force for the National Association of Black Journalists, which helped propel the careers of many. She continues to demonstrate her commitment to the craft of journalism by elevating the voices of Black women as well as issues of climate change — extending her stature as a leader among news peers,” the committee added.
The veteran journalist in 1999 became the first Black woman elected to the board of the White House Correspondents Association. She was a print pool reporter aboard Air Force One when then-President George W. Bush was evacuated to safety following the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. She most recently served as managing editor of Inside Climate News.
Ross was inducted into the Society of Professional Journalists’ Hall of Fame inductee in 2018. She currently serves on several boards, including those of the Journalism & Women’s Symposium, Washington Press Club Foundation, and SPJ Foundation. She’s a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc.
Founded in 1975, the Washington Association of Black Journalists is an organization of more than 300 Black journalists, educators, public relations professionals and student journalists in the Washington, D.C., metro area. WABJ provides members with ongoing professional development opportunities and advocates for newsroom diversity, equity and inclusion. WABJ was named 2023 Professional Chapter of the Year by the National Association of Black Journalists. For more information, please visit www.wabjdc.org