The Lowy Institute is pleased to announce that Hayden Cooper is the winner of the 2014 Lowy Institute Media Award for his ABC Foreign Correspondent report on journalist Peter Greste.
The ABC Middle East correspondent was awarded a $5000 cash prize and return airline travel (to the value of $6000), as well as a Lowy Institute Media Award trophy, created especially by Dinosaur Designs.
Other finalists selected by the judges were Amanda Hodge (News Corp, The Australian) for her coverage of the Indian elections and Indian sexual violence, Christopher Joye (Fairfax, Australian Financial Review) for his coverage of intelligence and spying issues, Michael Bachelard (Fairfax, Sydney Morning Herald) for his coverage of the Indonesian elections and Michael Edwards for his coverage of the polio epidemic in Pakistan (ABC, Foreign Correspondent).
‘Cooper’s coverage of the trial, and his compelling interviews with Greste’s colleagues and family, exposed the personal risks all foreign correspondents take reporting from countries in turmoil. Cooper’s telling of Greste’s story is a deserving winner’, said Lowy Institute Executive Director Dr Michael Fullilove, who was a member of the Media Award judging panel.
The 2014 winner was decided by a panel of eminent judges: comprising former Australian Senator and diplomat Amanda Vanstone, multi award-winning journalist Chris Masters, former foreign correspondent Jane Hutcheon, Lowy Institute Board Director Mark Ryan and Dr Fullilove.
The prize was awarded during a ceremony at the Lowy Institute’s Bligh Street headquarters. The keynote address for the ceremony was delivered by The Hon Malcolm Turnbull MP.
‘I'm honoured to receive this award and it heartens me that there's so much public interest in the plight of Peter Greste. But I accept this recognition with a measure of sadness, knowing that Peter, Mohamed and Baher remain in a Cairo prison’, Hayden Cooper said.
‘Thanks to the stellar team at Foreign Correspondent – executive producer Steve Taylor, producers Marianne Leitch, Greg Wilesmith and Sophie McNeill, cameraman Geoffrey Lye, and editors Nick Brenner and Stuart Miller’, he said.
The Lowy Institute Media Award was established to acknowledge Australian journalists (in print, broadcast, online) who through a single piece of reporting or commentary, or series of reports, have deepened the knowledge or shaped discussion of international policy issues in Australia over the last year. Finalists are selected on the basis of the topicality of their reporting, its originality and influence on the public debate, as well as the quality of the written work or broadcast.