Frontline Club Journalism Awards

Talk Friday 20th June, 2008

We’re pleased to announce the inaugural Frontline Club Award and the Frontline Memorial Tribute Award for excellence in journalism.

The awards aim to recognise an outstanding body of work or series of contributions over a one-year period. The awards focus on journalistic integrity, courage and the independence of spirit, regardless of nationality or media discipline and include the work of freelances.

Freelance photojournalist John D. McHugh wins the Frontline Club Award for his work in Afghanistan in 2007. McHugh financed his own trip and worked as a freelance for AFP, the Sunday Times, Newsweek as well as filing to his personal blog. He later sold images to FHM magazine and other outlets. McHugh was shot by a Taliban fighter on May 14, 2007 after spending five weeks in country embedded with the 10th Mountain Division in northeastern Afghanistan.
He very nearly died. He has returned to Afghanistan on two occasions most recently on a multimedia commission for The Guardian newspaper.

Frontline Memorial Tribute – Brent Stirton wins the inaugural Frontline Memorial Tribute Award for his photographic essay on gorillas in the eastern part of The Democratic Republic of Congo. The judges focussed on one image in particular of a dead male gorilla, one of four found in the forests in Virunga, that Brent pictured being transported by around 16 rangers.
Winners receive lifetime membership of the Frontline Club, a certificate and their names will be carved into a plaque in the main clubroom.

100% of funds raised at the awards ceremony go to the Fixers Fund – set up by the Frontline Club Charitable Trust to promote responsibility in the news industry for the welfare of fixers and translators.

The fund was created in May, 2007, initiated by Jon Lee Anderson, in response to the murder of Ajmal Naqshbandi in Afghanistan. The fund raises money for the families of fixers killed or injured while working with the international media.

“There can be no better moment than this one to establish a special compensation fund for the indispensable, underpaid and often unnamed Ajmals and Sayeds who pull us through and help us get our stories around the world, and who, increasingly, are paying the ultimate price for doing so.”