AGU names new journalism award for David Perlman

October 31, 1999

WASHINGTON -- The American Geophysical Union has established a new journalism award to complement the Walter Sullivan Award, which it has bestowed on science writers since 1989. The new award is named for David Perlman, science editor of the San Francisco Chronicle, in recognition of his distinguished career. Perlman won AGU's Sustained Achievement Award in Science Journalism in 1997.

Two factors underlay the decision by AGU's governing body, the Council, to establish the new award. First was the increasing number of entries in recent years and the expanding range of media they represent. Second was the difficulty the independent judging panel has found in meaningfully weighing news stories written under deadline pressure against features produced with longer lead times.

The Walter Sullivan Award will henceforth be limited to feature stories, and the David Perlman Award will honor writers of news stories. Full details of the awards, eligibility requirements, and an entry form are available on the AGU web site [www.agu.org/sci_soc/prrl/sullperl.pdf]. Any member of AGU may make a nomination, and authors may nominate themselves.

The next Sullivan and Perlman awards will be made in 2000 for work published in 1999 in any medium except books. The awards consist of a plaque and $2,000, presented at AGU's Spring or Fall Meeting.

The 1999 winner of the Sullivan Award was David Sington for his television series, Earth Story, produced by the BBC and The Learning Channel. Sington was the first broadcaster and first person from outside the United States to win the award.
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American Geophysical Union

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