AMERICAN RADIOWORKS WINS DUPONT-COLUMBIA AWARD FOR DOCUMENTARY “WHAT KILLED SERGEANT GRAY”
UPDATED DOCUMENTARY, FOR RE-RELEASE TODAY REVEALS A HAUNTINGLY SIMILAR DEATH IN GRAY’S UNIT
St. Paul, Minn. January 14, 2009; American RadioWorks, public radio’s largest documentary unit, is being honored with a silver Alfred I. DuPont-Columbia University Award for excellence in broadcast journalism. The award was announced today by Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism. The winning documentary by Michael Montgomery, Joshua E.S. Phillips and Catherine Winter examined the mysterious death of Sergeant Adam Gray, who made it home from Iraq only to die in his barracks. Upon investigating his death American RadioWorks uncovered new allegations of detainee abuse and followed members of a U.S. Army unit as they struggled to come to terms with what they did, and didn’t do, in Iraq.
Given continued news coverage of torture, and new studies such as the recent RAND study finding that nearly one in five returning service members suffer symptoms of PTSD or depression, the ARW team followed the story of Sergeant Adam Gray’s unit after the program’s release in the fall of 2008. Since the documentary first aired, another soldier in Gray’s unit died after coming home from war, his death was hauntingly similar to Gray’s. Full audio, video clips from Gray’s unit, and reporter Joshua Phillips reporter’s notebook from “What Killed Sergeant Gray” can be found at americanradioworks.org.
Still a relevant discussion, ARW has updated “What Killed Sergeant Gray” to better reflect the psychological struggles these men face. The updated hour-long program will air on public radio stations across the country starting January 22 and full audio can be found at americanradioworks.org.
Accepting the award on behalf of American RadioWorks, executive editor Stephen Smith, producer Michael Montgomery and reporter Joshua Phillips, will attend a ceremony January 21 at Columbia University in New York. This is the second duPont award for American RadioWorks, winning in 2000 for the documentary “Massacre at Cuska.” ARW has also been the recipient of the prestigious Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Award for “Engineering Crops in a Needy World,” the George Polk Award for “Reports from a Warming Planet,” as well as two Investigative Reporters and Editors Certificates.
The Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Awards, established in 1942, honor overall excellence in broadcast journalism; the awards are considered the broadcast equivalent of the Pulitzer Prize. A complete list of the thirteen winners announced this year is available at dupont.org.