The Indiana Journalism Hall of Fame induction ceremony is back

This story was posted on July 27, 2021.

It’s time to celebrate journalism again.

Regardless of whether it is a riot or a pandemic which sidelines the world, journalists don’t stop. Instead each runs toward the danger with little thought to the risk to their own lives.  After a year of watching journalists inform us about the dangers while the rest of us secluded ourselves, the Indiana Journalism Hall of Fame is venturing out to celebrate journalism again. The Hall of Fame ceremony to induct its next members was postponed twice due to the pandemic last year.

Finally, the ceremony is back on and planned for 10:30 a.m. April 9, 2022, at the Marriott North in Indianapolis.

COVID safety guidelines will be followed to minimize risk.

The Hall of Fame board is excited to tell you about the 2020 class of inductees.

A mentor, nicknamed “newsroom mother,” who helped to diversify her news staffs, an empathetic reporter whose work revealed the culture of sexual abuse at USA Gymnastics, an editor who came to realize that journalism serves as the “voice of the voiceless” and another who directed a newsroom through decades of “wrenching” change are among the 2020 inductees to the Indiana Journalism Hall of Fame.

Leisa Richardson, the Executive Editor of the State Journal Register in Springfield, Ill.; Tim Evans, investigative and consumer reporter for the Indianapolis Star; Tim Harmon, retired Editor of the South Bend Tribune and a former editorial writer for the  Fort Wayne Journal-Gazette, and Bob Zaltsberg, who recently retired after 33 years as Editor of the Bloomington Herald-Times, will be honored in the ceremony April 9 at the Marriott North at Keystone, Indianapolis.

Meet each inductee:

Tim Evans has been celebrated for his work exposing the culture and policies at USA Gymnastics that resulted in hundreds of gymnasts being abused. Colleagues and bosses credit his work ethic, never-ending mentoring and ability to be a team player. He was the first reporter to confront USA Gymnastics team doctor Larry Nassar about sexual abuse allegations. In addition to his investigative reporting, Evans brings the same thorough, compassionate approach to his work as a consumer reporter with “his baby” — the Hoosier Call to Action consumer hotline. The program allows people in Indiana to reach out to volunteers who help solve their problems, be they as small as a $25 gift card never received to thousands of dollars in insurance payments never paid. So far, the program has saved Hoosiers more than $1.5 million. In addition, it has kept people from eviction, restored water service and helped resolve a dispute among neighbors. In the process his work has resulted in changed state and federal laws.

Tim Harmon, a Kentucky transplant and an Indiana University graduate, is described as a compassionate, patient mentor who “never lost enthusiasm for a story well told,” and who learned that journalists are “the voice for the voiceless.” He worked as Managing Editor of the Fort Wayne Journal-Gazette, the Managing Editor of the Times of NW Indiana and, as Editor, he led the South Bend Tribune through the transition from afternoon to morning publication, shoring up the bureau system, and developed convergence relationships with sister radio stations, all with tightening resources. After he “retired,” Harmon returned to the Journal-Gazette, on an interim basis, as an editorial writer producing award-winning editorials before retiring again. Although he could confine his research to phone interviews and Internet searches, colleagues say, he often chooses to attend city council meetings or community forums and listen to debates firsthand.

Leisa Richardson, a graduate of Ball State, has helped diversify news staffs, hiring dozens of people of color and women, as she has worked in newsrooms from the Anderson Herald-Bulletin and the Cincinnati Enquirer. She also worked nearly 20 years at the Indianapolis Star in a variety of jobs from Metro/ Region editor to Regional Planning Director. She is currently Executive Editor of the Springfield, Ill., State Journal Register. Colleagues say her “impact has been wide and deep” over her 40-year career. She was the first African American to lead a mainstream daily newsroom in Indiana and has led organizations for journalists of color for decades. One of those is the UNITY Journalists of Color, which represents several other organizations.

Bob Zaltsberg, the son of a department store owner, had plans to follow a mentor to Louisville after a few years at the Bloomington Herald Telephone. But after working several years, half the time as a news reporter and half as a sports reporter, he got the signal that his bosses considered him editor material. He stayed in that position for 33 years, retiring as Editor of what became the Herald-Times. He led the newspaper through the transition from afternoon to morning circulation, through the addition of a Sunday edition, into the digital age and, along the way, collected two Blue Ribbon Newspaper honors. He was involved in the Bloomington community as well as state and national journalism organizations. Colleagues say his respectful, steady hand allowed him to “run the newspaper the way a top-notch conductor runs a symphony.”

About us:

Established in 1966, the Indiana Journalism Hall of Fame honors media professionals with Indiana ties in its annual induction ceremony. It is a partner of the Indiana University Media School, which houses its archives and materials. The Hall strives to preserve the history and stories of journalism in Indiana.

Attend the ceremony:

The event begins with a 10:30 a.m. reception April 9, 2022, at the Marriott North at Keystone in Indianapolis, followed by lunch at 11:30 a.m. and program at 12:30 p.m.

Tickets are $50 each, $25 for children 12 and younger. Contact Lawrence Taylor, IJHF@indiana.edu, to purchase tickets, sponsorships or program ads.

In addition to closely monitoring the fluid national, state and local Covid situations, we are working with the Marriott to configure table seating that will provide extra distancing during lunch and the ceremony. We are asking that the serving staff wear masks as well as all attendees, regardless of vaccination status, except while eating or drinking. We’ll also have masks on hand if you or any of your guests forget to bring one.

This approach matches the most recent indoor-event guidelines of the Centers for Disease Control, Marion County and Indianapolis.

Support the Indiana Journalism Hall of Fame through sponsorships: Friend $25-$99, Supporter $100-$249, Partner $250-$999, Patron $1,000-$2,499, Benefactor $2,500-$4,999, Sustainer $5,000 and above. You may also purchase ads in the program which at $250 for a full page, $150 for a half page and $100 for a quarter page.

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