News Release

University of Wisconsin-Madison
School of Journalism and Mass Communication

The University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Journalism and Mass Communication (SJMC) announced the 2021 recipients of its alumni awards today. Each year, the School honors distinguished alumni with awards for their accomplishments in the field of communication.

“Here in the School of Journalism and Mass Communication, we pride ourselves on the high quality education our students receive,” said Hernando Rojas, SJMC Professor and Director. “We know when students leave our classrooms, they have the skills and experience they need to leave their mark on the world. Our alumni award winners are the perfect examples of the outstanding careers our alumni go on to have.” 

The 2021 SJMC alumni award winners are as follows:

  • Ralph O. Nafziger Award: For distinguished achievement within 10 years of graduation
    • Rachel Dickens (BA’11)—Marketing Communications Manager, Molson Coors Beverage Company
  • Harold L. Nelson Award: For distinguished contribution to research in journalism and mass communication education
    • Annie Lang (BA’80, PhD’87)—Distinguished Professor, The Media School, Indiana University Bloomington
  • Sharon Dunwoody Early Career Award: For distinguished achievement in teaching and research within 5-10 years of graduation from the PhD program
    • Namjin Lee (BA’03, PhD’10)—Associate Professor, Department of Communication, College of Charleston
    • Kjerstin Thorson (PhD’10)—Associate Professor, Department of Advertising and Public Relations and the School of Journalism, Michigan State University 
  • Distinguished Service Award: For professional contributions in journalism and mass communication
    • Deborah Blum (BA’82)—Author and Director, Knight Science Journalism program, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
    • Meg Jones (BA’84)—Journalist, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
    • Mary Annette Pember (BA’85)—National Correspondent, Indian Country Today 

The 2021 SJMC alumni award winners will be honored at a virtual ceremony on Friday, April 23 at 6:00 p.m. CDT. 

Registration for the event is available at go.wisc.edu/SJMCAwards. 

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