Today in Media History: 2006 Pulitzers honored Hurricane Katrina coverage

April 17, 2015
Category: Uncategorized

On April 17, 2006, the Sun Herald and the Times-Picayune were awarded Pulitzer Prizes for their coverage of Hurricane Katrina.

Their award-winning work, along with other great journalism honored that year, is posted on the Pulitzer website and linked to below.

Public Service
The Times-Picayune, New Orleans
Sun Herald, Biloxi-Gulfport

Breaking News Reporting
Staff of The Times-Picayune, New Orleans

Investigative Reporting
Susan Schmidt, James V. Grimaldi and R. Jeffrey Smith of The Washington Post

Explanatory Reporting
David Finkel of The Washington Post

Beat Reporting
Dana Priest of The Washington Post

National Reporting
James Risen and Eric Lichtblau of The New York Times
The San Diego Union-Tribune and Copley News Service with notable work by Marcus Stern and Jerry Kammer

International Reporting
Joseph Kahn and Jim Yardley of The New York Times

Feature Writing
Jim Sheeler of Rocky Mountain News, Denver

Nicholas D. Kristof of The New York Times

Robin Givhan of The Washington Post

Editorial Writing
Rick Attig and Doug Bates of The Oregonian, Portland

Editorial Cartooning
Mike Luckovich of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Breaking News Photography
Staff of The Dallas Morning News

Feature Photography
Todd Heisler of Rocky Mountain News, Denver


Here is an excerpt from a Sun Herald story about Hurricane Katrina titled, “‘Our Tsunami’: At least 50 die in a storm as fearsome as Camille“:

“BILOXI — Hurricane Katrina devastated South Mississippi on Monday with a force not seen since Camille 36 years ago, sweeping aside multimillion-dollar casinos, burying the beach highway and killing at least 50 people in Harrison County.

‘This,’ said Biloxi Mayor A.J. Holloway, ‘is our tsunami.’

At least 50 are confirmed dead in Gulfport and Biloxi.

Katrina raged ashore in Mississippi at dawn and terrorized the Coast until winds subided after 3 p.m., leaving massive damage in her wake. Monday night, communications were down and transportation systems demolished. Katrina also crippled medical services.

Beleaguered emergency personnel awaited reinforcements from the federal government and other states to shore up assistance.

‘We are still in the search-and-rescue mode,’ Holloway said. It will be days before the costs of Katrina, in lives and property, are known.”

After the mighty storm came the rising water,” is one of the 2006 Pulitzer Prize-winning stories from The Times-Picayune:

“A large section of the vital 17th Street Canal levee, where it connects to the brand new ‘hurricane proof’ Old Hammond Highway bridge, gave way late Monday morning in Bucktown after Katrina’s fiercest winds were well north. The breach sent a churning sea of water from Lake Pontchartrain coursing across Lakeview and into Mid- City, Carrollton, Gentilly, City Park and neighborhoods farther south and east.

As night fell on a devastated region, the water was still rising in the city, and nobody was willing to predict when it would stop. After the destruction already apparent in the wake of Katrina, the American Red Cross was mobilizing for what regional officials were calling the largest recovery operation in the organization’s history….”