Kenneth T. Walsh, Chief White House Correspondent for U.S. News & World Report, has won the 22nd annual Gerald R. Ford Prize for Distinguished Reporting on the Presidency. The $5,000 award recognizes journalists whose high standards for accuracy and substance help foster a better public understanding of the Presidency. The award was presented by Jack Ford, son of the late President Gerald R. Ford and chairman of the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Foundation, at a National Press Club luncheon on June 1, 2009. Following presentation of the awards, former Vice President Richard Cheney addressed the audience.
When announcing their decision to award Kenneth T. Walsh the Gerald R. Ford Prize for Distinguished Reporting on the Presidency in 2008, the judges issued the following statement.
“Examining the final year of the Presidency of George W. Bush, Kenneth T. Walsh portrayed the 43rd President, his record, his policies, his actions, his successes and disappointments, and his character with insight, perspective, fairness, and objectivity.
Basing his work on extensive research, Walsh combined judgments from historians, interviews of close family members, and reportorial skills to offer depth of understanding of this Presidency. He told his readers not only how, but why, President Bush II dealt with the appalling tragedy of 9/11, the misinformation that provoked a preventive war in Iraq, and the economic downturn that marked the end of his eight years in office. By resourcefulness in reporting and clarity of writing, Walsh has recorded acommendable account of the legacy of George W. Bush.”
The judges for this year’s contest were:
Chair, James M. Cannon, former National Affairs Editor of Newsweek and former Assistant to President Ford for Domestic Policy; Candice Nelson, associate professor of Government and Director of American University’s Campaign Management Institute; Mark Rozell, professor of Public Policy at George Mason University; Gene Roberts, Philip Merrill College of Journalism Professor, University of Maryland and 2007 Pulitzer Prize-winner; and Jack Nelson, former Bureau Chief of the Los Angeles Times Washington Bureau and Pulitzer Prize-winner.