Sun-Sentinel managing editor and Pacific Daily News honored with diversity leadership awards
Oct. 17, 2006
Sharon Rosenhause, managing editor of the Sun-Sentinel in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., and the Pacific Daily News on Guam have been named winners of the fifth annual Robert G. McGruder Awards for Diversity Leadership.
The awards, which recognize leadership in news content and in
recruiting, developing and retaining journalists of color, will be
presented at the Associated Press Managing Editors association (APME)
conference Oct. 26 in New Orleans.
The honors are given by APME and the American Society of Newspaper
Editors (ASNE) in partnership with the Freedom Forum, which provides
the funding. Each honoree receives $2,500 and a sculpture representing
"This year's winners show a diversity of newsroom approaches," said
Charles Overby, Freedom Forum and Diversity Institute chairman and CEO.
"They show there is more than one way to promote inclusion in news
coverage and in newsroom staffing – and that is what diversity is all
At the Sun-Sentinel, the efforts of Sharon Rosenhause, who
won in the over-75,000 circulation category, have helped increase the
percentage of minority newsroom employees from 19% to more than 29%.
Rosenhause, who attends many conventions and events sponsored by
minority journalists' organizations, "has created programs in the
newsroom ranging from mentoring to specialized training for minorities
who have demonstrated an ability to lead and assume additional
responsibilities," Earl Maucker, Sun-Sentinel editor, wrote in his nomination.
Rosenhause's contributions have extended well beyond the Sun-Sentinel.
She has been chair of ASNE's Diversity Committee and a member of the
advisory board of the Race and Diversity Workshop at Columbia
University's Graduate School of Journalism. She hosted an ASNE
Leadership Institute and proposed and found funding for a Florida
Society of Newspaper Editors' multimedia scholarship for diverse
"Sharon's commitment to diversity and her goals as an editor have
always been the same: to develop the best, most diverse staff possible,
and to produce the best content possible, always reflecting the
diversity of the community she covers," said David Zeeck, president of
executive editor of The News Tribune in Tacoma, Wash. "To
Sharon it's never been solely about a diverse staff. To her it's
ultimately about diverse content and a commitment to excellence.
"Her passion for diversity, her unfailing good humor and her
unwillingness to accept less than the best are reflections of Bob
McGruder's legacy: better newsrooms producing better journalism."
The newsroom staff of the Pacific Daily News.
The western Pacific island of Guam is home to the indigenous
Chamorros and a melting pot of ethnicities. While diversity has been an
opportunity for the Pacific Daily News, recruiting has been a logistical challenge for the newspaper more than 6,000 miles from the U.S. mainland.
The newspaper has faced the challenges with high school and college internship programs and a "grow our own" program. The Pacific Daily News, winner in the under-75,000 circulation category, was honored for its exemplary home-grown recruiting efforts.
"The Pacific Daily News has done a remarkable job of diversifying its newsroom to reflect the community it serves," said Charlotte Hall, editor of the Orlando Sentinel
and a 2003 McGruder award winner. "Against the odds, it has grown its
own journalists from the island through a comprehensive program
starting with high school internships. The result is a paper that
understands and better serves its richly complex community."
The newspaper's "grow our own" program is a one-year internship for
university seniors or those considering journalism as a second career.
Newsroom staffers serve as trainers and mentors.
"For a small newsroom, these programs have been fairly intense and
time consuming, but very rewarding," wrote Rindraty Celes Limtiaco,
executive editor. A lifestyle editor, an assistant lifestyle editor and
a design editor were products of the program.
Other nominees were:
(Over-75,000 circulation category)
• Diversity Committee, The Arizona Republic, Phoenix
• Doug Clancy, assistant managing editor/administration, The
Record, Hackensack, N.J., and Herald News, West Paterson, N.J.
• Rochester (N.Y.) Democrat and Chronicle
• The Clarion-Ledger, Jackson, Miss.
• The News Journal, Wilmington, Del.
• The News-Press, Fort Myers, Fla.
(Under-75,000 circulation category)
• Statesman Journal, Salem, Ore.
• The Daily Times, Farmington, N.M.
• The Post-Crescent, Appleton, Wis.
• York (Pa.) Daily Record
The awards are named for a former executive editor of the Detroit Free Press and a diversity champion. He died in April 2002.
Judges were: Calvin Stovall, executive editor, Press & Sun-Bulletin, Binghamton, N.Y., and Stuart Wilk, consultant and retired managing editor, The Dallas Morning News,
representing APME; Zeeck and Hall, representing ASNE; last year's
winners Saundra Keyes, professor at the Donald W. Reynolds School of
Journalism at the University of Nevada-Reno, and Randell Beck,
executive editor, Argus Leader, Sioux Falls, S.D.; Aki Soga, business editor, The Burlington (Vt.) Free Press,
representing UNITY: Journalists of Color; and Kate Kennedy,
representing the Freedom Forum, where she is director/partnerships and
• • •
The Freedom Forum, based in Arlington, Va., is a nonpartisan
foundation dedicated to free press, free speech and free spirit for all
people. The foundation focuses on three priorities: the Newseum, the
First Amendment and newsroom diversity.
The Freedom Forum funds the operations of the Newseum, an
interactive museum of news under construction in Washington, D.C.; the
First Amendment Center; and the Diversity Institute. The First
Amendment Center and the Diversity Institute are housed in the John
Seigenthaler Center at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tenn. The
First Amendment Center also has offices in Washington and the Diversity
Institute has offices and programs at the University of South Dakota in
The Freedom Forum was established in 1991 under the direction of
Founder Allen H. Neuharth as successor to a foundation started in 1935
by newspaper publisher Frank E. Gannett. The Freedom Forum is not
affiliated with Gannett Co. Its work is supported by income from an
endowment of diversified assets.