Rappler’s Marites Vitug named Metrobank’s 2015 Journalist of the Year

Rappler.com
Marites Vitug, Rappler's editor-at-large, and 2 others win Metrobank's Search for Journalists of the Year for 2015 – the second year the award is conferred

MANILA, Philippines – Rappler editor-at-large Marites Vitug and 2 other journalists are named 2015 Journalists of the Year (JOY) by the Metrobank Foundation Inc (MBFI) and the Probe Media Foundation Inc (PMFI).

Vitug and the other winners – Howie Severino of GMA and Nancy Carvajal of the Philippine Daily Inquirer – were selected, as their stories “have contributed to positive social change and their work influences and develops their audiences towards constructive growth.”

The 3 were chosen out of a pool of nominees who submitted 5 stories in the last 10 years of their career as journalists. A screening committee judged their works based on the following criteria: skills and craftsmanship, relevance of content to the public, and contribution to positive social change.

Ten semifinalists were identified to undergo an interview before the members of the Preliminary Board of Judges composed of Center for Media Freedom and Responsibility (CMFR) executive director Melinda Quintos-de Jesus, CMFR trustee Vergel Santos, and Vera Files trustee Luz Rimban.

Six finalists advanced to the final judging and faced the members of the FInal Board of Judges composed of Ombudsman Conchita Carpio-Morales, Commission on Elections (Comelec) chairperson Andres Baustista, Commission on Higher Education (CHED) chairperson Patricia Licuanan, Ateneo De Manila University president Jose Ramon Villarin SJ, and Ramon Magsaysay Award Foundation president Carmencita Abella.

“For the nobility of their work, and the hazards they face, journalists receive little recognition for their important contribution as bearers of truth. We uphold the indispensable role of journalists: shaping public opinion through accurate facts and engaging treatment,” MBFI president Aniceto Sobrepeña said.

The awardees will receive P300,000 cash prize and a Pamukaw medallion in a formal awarding ceremony on October 22.

They will also be conferred the title “Metrobank Foundation Fellows in Journalism,” and will have the opportunity to share their expertise and experience through lectures they will conduct in various parts of the country.

The Search for JOY is conducted every two years, with its first awardees named in 2013. – Rappler.com