ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (Sept. 13, 2021) – The Poynter Institute will present Lesley Stahl, award-winning broadcast journalist and “60 Minutes” correspondent for CBS News, with the Poynter Medal for Lifetime Achievement in Journalism at its annual fundraising gala on Nov. 10.
Each year, Poynter presents this prestigious award to an accomplished journalist whose career has made a significant impact on democracy and its institutions. Citizens have turned to Stahl for more than five decades for tough, but fair reporting marked by political scoops, investigations, surprising features and foreign reporting. Her reporting continues as she enters her 30th year at “60 Minutes” the iconic TV news-magazine.
“Today and throughout her distinguished journalism career, Lesley Stahl holds presidents, CEOs and others in power to account, asking tough questions on behalf of citizen viewers,” said Neil Brown, president of the Poynter. “She is among the most respected and trusted broadcast journalists in America today and her high-integrity reporting embodies the craft and ideals we work to support at Poynter. We are thrilled to celebrate her lifelong dedication to journalism that makes a difference.”
Stahl has been an advocate for democracy throughout her rich career as she covered groundbreaking stories from health care and climate change to Watergate and the Jan. 6 insurrection. She continues to draw industry admiration and enormous numbers of viewers for her historic interviews with world leaders, including last year’s landmark report with then-President Donald Trump.
“Ms. Stahl has championed the values of being a straight-shooting journalist since starting her career as a local news reporter in Boston to becoming the first woman to serve as a CBS News White House correspondent and then part of the most-watched journalism in America at ‘60 Minutes,” Brown said. “Last year’s interview with President Trump was simply a recent example of independent journalists, demanding answers.”
Stahl entered her 30th season of “60 Minutes” this September. Through the years, Stahl’s commitment to honest, independent journalism earned her numerous awards and accolades including 15 Emmys with one for Lifetime Achievement, the Edward R. Murrow Award, the Founders Award for Journalistic Excellence from the International Center for Journalists and the Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Silver Baton.
Prior to joining “60 Minutes” in 1991, Stahl served as a CBS News White House correspondent during the Carter and Reagan presidencies and the first half of George H. W. Bush’s presidency. Her reports appeared frequently on “CBS Evening News,” first with Walter Cronkite and then with Dan Rather. During that time, Stahl also served as moderator of “Face the Nation” from 1983 to 1991, interviewing newsmakers like Margaret Thatcher, Boris Yeltsin, Yasser Arafat and nearly every top U.S. official. She was co-host of “America Tonight” with Charles Kuralt from 1990 to 1991. Stahl graduated from Wheaton College.
She is also the author of two best-selling books, “Reporting Live,” which recounts her 20 years covering Washington, and most recently “Becoming Grandma: The Joys and Science of the New Grandparenting.”
Stahl will join an esteemed roster of Poynter Medal recipients including:
- Chris Wallace, broadcast journalist, best-selling author and anchor of “Fox News Sunday”
- Katie Couric, broadcast journalist, best-selling author and media entrepreneur
- Lester Holt, anchor of “NBC Nightly News” and “Dateline NBC”
- Judy Woodruff, anchor and managing editor of “PBS NewsHour”
- Tom Brokaw, former anchor of “NBC Nightly News”
- Bob Schieffer, former CBS News anchor and host of “Face the Nation”
Poynter will present Stahl with the award during its virtual Celebration of Journalism on Nov. 10 with hundreds of Poynter and journalism supporters, friends, dignitaries and sponsors. The event will pay tribute to Stahl and include a conversation with her about journalism and its future, and special guest appearances by celebrity journalists, rare performances and outstanding storytelling.
The Poynter Institute was founded more than 45 years ago by Nelson Poynter, the then-owner and editor of the St. Petersburg (Florida) Times. Poynter created a school to train professional journalists and elevate the craft. Upon his death, in an exceptional act of vision and philanthropy that ensured the independence of his beloved local paper, Poynter bequeathed ownership of the now Tampa Bay Times to the school.
Today, the institute still owns the paper while having grown into a nonprofit global leader in journalism education. Poynter trains tens of thousands of journalists, educators and students around the world in person and online each year. Clients include CBS, NBC, Univision, ESPN, NPR, Gannett, McClatchy and TEGNA newsrooms, and numerous local TV stations, community newspapers and digital news sites.
Poynter also operates three fact-checking enterprises: the Pulitzer Prize-winning PolitiFact, the International Fact-Checking Network, and a digital news literacy program called MediaWise that teaches teens, seniors and first-time voters to tell fact from fiction online. In addition, Poynter is the home of the Craig Newmark Center for Ethics and Leadership at Poynter, a resource for journalists and citizens to navigate today’s complex media landscape.
The Poynter Medal was created to celebrate journalism and Poynter’s legacy.
Proceeds from the fundraising event support the work of the nonprofit Poynter Institute and its dedication to defend democracy, seek the truth and elevate journalism for those who create and consume it.
Tickets for the virtual fundraising gala honoring Lesley Stahl are available at poynter.org/gala. To sponsor the event, please contact Wendy Wallace, director of advancement, at firstname.lastname@example.org for details.
About The Poynter Institute
The Poynter Institute for Media Studies is a global leader in journalism education and a strategy center that stands for uncompromising excellence in journalism, media and 21st-century public discourse. Poynter faculty teach seminars and workshops at the Institute in St. Petersburg, Florida, and at newsrooms, conferences and organizations around the world. Its e-learning division, News University, offers the world’s largest online journalism curriculum, with hundreds of interactive courses and tens of thousands of registered international users. The Institute’s website produces 24-hour coverage about media, ethics, technology and the business of news. Poynter is the home of the Craig Newmark Center for Ethics and Leadership, the Pulitzer Prize-winning PolitiFact, the International Fact-Checking Network and MediaWise, a digital information literacy project for young people, first-time voters and senior citizens. The world’s top journalists and media innovators rely on Poynter to learn and teach new generations of reporters, storytellers, media inventors, designers, visual journalists, documentarians and broadcasters. This work builds public awareness about journalism, media, the First Amendment and discourse that serves democracy and the public good. Learn more at poynter.org.
Director of Marketing
The Poynter Institute