Brooks Jackson, Director Emeritus of FactCheck.org, is the namesake of a new award presented this year by the Walter Cronkite Award for Excellence in Television Political Journalism. Recipients of the award, called the Cronkite/Jackson Prize for Fact Checking Political Messages, are selected by a special jury convened by the Annenberg Public Policy Center (APPC) of the University of Pennsylvania, home of FactCheck.org. This year’s winners, announced today, include:
- Local station winner: KUSA, Denver, CO, an NBC affiliate owned by the Gannett Company. The jury was impressed by KUSA’s commitment of reportorial talent to its 44 “Truth Tests,” the skill with which it minimized the impact of the visuals in the analyzed ads and the on-air/online synergy created by posting the analyses and supporting articles and sources on 9news.com.
- National winner: CNN. Tom Foreman’s in-depth “Reality Checks” effectively used three-dimensional graphics to clarify the complexity of the underlying issues, set the candidates’ exchanges in historical context and underscore corrections.
Said APPC director and University of Pennsylvania professor Kathleen Hall Jamieson, “In a competition filled with exemplary work, the graphics innovations of CNN and KUSA, and KUSA’s web outreach stood out.”
Jackson is a journalist who has covered Washington and national politics since 1970, reporting in turn for the Associated Press, the Wall Street Journal and CNN. He joined the Annenberg Public Policy Center in 2003 and launched FactCheck.org in December of that year. At CNN, he pioneered the “adwatch” and “factcheck” form of stories debunking false and misleading political statements, starting with the presidential election of 1992. His investigative reporting for the AP and the Journal won several national awards. He is the author of three books: “Honest Graft: Big Money and the American Political Process” (Knopf, 1988); “Broken Promise: Why the Federal Election Commission Failed” (Twentieth Century Fund, 1990); and “unSpun: Finding Facts in a World of Disinformation” with Kathleen Hall Jamieson (Random House, 2007).