A newspaper reporter covering one of the most dangerous beats in the world—Mexican drug cartels and associated mayhem—will receive Colby’s Lovejoy Award for courageous journalism Sept. 26.
Alfredo Corchado, Mexico bureau chief for the Dallas Morning News, is regarded as the most intrepid reporter on that beat, according Rebecca Corbett ’74, a member of the Lovejoy Selection Committee and assistant Washington bureau chief for the New York Times. He has broken news about drug dealers and organized crime, disappearances and deaths of women in Juarez, police and government corruption, and the spillover of violence across the border into Dallas and other cities.
Corchado has endured threats to his life, has been forced to leave Mexico at times, and takes special precautions, but he continues to write about the conflict on the U.S.-Mexico border. Born in Durango, Mexico, he grew up in California and Texas.
A 2009 Neiman Fellow at Harvard and a 2010 Woodrow Wilson Scholar, Corchado won the Maria Moors Cabot Award from Columbia Journalism School in 2007 for bravery and enterprise. He will accept the Lovejoy award and an honorary doctoral degree Sept. 26 and will remain on campus for several days to interact with students.
The Lovejoy Award has been given annually since 1952 to honor courage in journalism. It honors the memory of Elijah Parish Lovejoy, Colby’s valedictorian in 1826 and a passionate abolitionist publisher who was killed in Alton, Ill., in 1837 for condemning slavery. Lovejoy is considered America’s first martyr to freedom of the press.