Elijah Parish Lovejoy Journalism Award

Since 1952, Honoring Courage in Journalism

The Story of Lovejoy

LovejoyElijah Parish Lovejoy was born Nov. 9, 1802, in Albion, Maine, and graduated from Waterville College (now Colby) in 1826. On Nov. 7, 1837, in Alton, Ill., Lovejoy, a newspaper editor, became America's first martyr to the freedom of the press when a pro-slavery mob set fire to the building that housed his press. Killed as he attempted to extinguish the blaze, he was buried on Nov. 9, his 35th birthday.

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Colby's Lovejoy Award, established in 1952, honors a member of the newspaper profession who continues Elijah Parish Lovejoy's heritage of fearlessness and freedom. The recipient may be an editor, reporter, or publisher who has contributed to the nation's journalistic achievement. Criteria include integrity, craftsmanship, character, intelligence, and courage.

Criteria   |   Selection Committee
2013 Recipient A.C. Thompson
A.C. Thompson

A.C. Thompson, a reporter for ProPublica who won the 2013 Elijah Parish Lovejoy Award, said his test for whether to tackle a project is this: “Is this a story about human suffering that is needless?” Thompson received the award and an honorary doctor of laws degree Oct. 27. More >

An audio recording of his remarks in Lorimer Chapel including a Q and A and a transcript of his address are online.

- Lovejoy 2013 Convocation

- Past Recipients