Baltimore, MD – Today, Planned Parenthood Federation of America presented the 2014 Maggie Awards for Media Excellence in 11 categories to journalists, activists, and social media innovators for their exceptional coverage of reproductive rights and women’s health care issues.
The awards luncheon was part of Planned Parenthood’s annual Development Officers Council, which brings together Planned Parenthood affiliate CEOs and Development staff from across the country.
“We are thrilled to honor these brilliant, fearless journalists, doing outstanding work to give millions of Americans a better understanding of sexual and reproductive health,” said Cecile Richards president of Planned Parenthood Federation of America. “These are the stories that educate and empower us all and we are so proud to recognize their truly inspirational work.”
The Planned Parenthood Maggie Awards recognized three new categories for social media: community activism, social media campaign, and media activism, recognizing digital media frontrunners that are raising awareness and driving traditional media coverage.
"I believe that Planned Parenthood and the reproductive rights movement are natural partners for my community," said Janet Mock, author of the New York Times bestseller Redefining Realness. "I believe that we can advocate for bodily autonomy, for self determination, for reproductive justice for all."
This year, for the first time Planned Parenthood awarded a brand new category for Excellence in Media, which was presented to Cosmopolitan magazine for its comprehensive coverage and discussions of women’s health — both in its print and online editions. Since Joanna Coles became editor-in-chief in 2012 the magazine has increasingly focused on reproductive and sexual health issues.
"We're not much for rules at Cosmopolitan, but we do have two: We will never judge women, and we will always speak up for their rights,” said Joanna Coles, editor-in-chief, Cosmopolitan magazine. “We're honored to have our coverage recognized by Planned Parenthood, a fearless and indispensable ally that we know plays by the same rules."
This year’s Maggie Award winners covered a range of topics, including the ongoing attacks on access to abortion across the country; the HIV epidemic in the Deep South; the many benefits of the Affordable Care Act for women; rape culture; and the importance of creating a safe space for trans voices online.
The 2014 Maggie Award winners are:
Daily Print Reporting: Carolyn Jones, formerly of the Texas Observer, for her deeply passionate and incredibly informative coverage of the ongoing attempts to restrict abortion access in Texas.
Commentary: Jessica Valenti, formerly of The Nation, for her “Body Politic” column, a constant source of original thinking on essential reproductive rights issues and the politics and policies that inform them.
General Interest Magazine Reporting: Sarah Stillman, The New Yorker, for her piece, “HIV’s Grip on the American South,” which sheds much-needed light on the HIV epidemic in the Deep South of the United States.
Women’s Magazine: Maya Rhodan, ESSENCE magazine, for her piece, “What We Stand to Lose,” on the various attempts to restrict access to safe and legal abortion in this country and the disproportionate impact this will have on black women.
TV and Online Reporting: Irin Carmon, MSNBC, for her powerful piece “The new frontier of the abortion wars,” on the anti-abortion movement in Albuquerque, New Mexico, and her subsequent television reporting on this for MSNBC.
Online Reporting: Adriana Beorlegui, HolaDoctor, for her extremely informative coverage of the Affordable Care Act throughout the enrollment period and her efforts to educate the Latino community on the benefits of the ACA.
Social Media Community Activism: Zerlina Maxwell, #RapeCultureIsWhen, for starting the incredibly powerful #RapeCultureIsWhen conversation via social media and bringing light to an issue long overlooked by traditional media.
Media Activism: Christopher DiDonato, for his invaluable activist efforts during the Texas filibuster and subsequent events, live-streaming the action on the ground so that supporters across the country could see what was happening in real time.
Social Media Campaign: Janet Mock, #RedefiningRealness, for creating such a powerful and safe space for trans voices online and beyond through her #RedefiningRealness tumblr page.
TV Reporting: Dr. Jennifer Ashton, CBS’s The Doctors, for her informative coverage of the Affordable Care Act's many benefits for women, specifically in the “Obamacare 101: How the Affordable Care Act Affects You” episode of The Doctors, which aired in December of 2013.
Excellence in Media: Cosmopolitan magazine, for their bold coverage and discussions of women's health and the attacks on women's access to safe and legal abortion across the country, both in their print and online editions.
The awards were presented by Lola Ogunnaike, the host of Arise Entertainment 360 and a TODAY show contributor. She has also served as a correspondent for CNN’s American Morning and has been a reporter for The New York Times.
You can read more about the Planned Parenthood Maggie Awards on Planned Parenthood’s website. Check back in early 2015 for nomination forms for the 2015 awards.
Planned Parenthood is the nation’s leading provider and advocate of high-quality, affordable health care for women, men, and young people, as well as the nation’s largest provider of sex education. With more than 700 health centers across the country, Planned Parenthood organizations serve all patients with care and compassion, with respect and without judgment. Through health centers, programs in schools and communities, and online resources, Planned Parenthood is a trusted source of reliable health information that allows people to make informed health decisions. We do all this because we care passionately about helping people lead healthier lives.