October 29, 2020

People Column

SCHOLARS

Kantaro Komiya, the OPC Foundation’s 2020 Stan Swinton Fellowship winner, was part of a team that was a finalist in the Society of Professional Journalists award in the category of Online In-Depth Reporting. The DePauw Solutions Journalism’s project, “Learning the Limits,” explored a campus drinking crisis which saw 19 DePauw students hospitalized for alcohol poisoning last year.

2018 Fritz Beebe Fellowship winner Yi-Ling Liu filed a longform story for Harper’s Magazine chronicling the development and the culture of the Hong Kong protest movement, as well as a look at its future in light of China’s ongoing crackdown against opposition. She outlines creative ways that the movement uses language and non-violent tactics to communicate and evade arrest. “At its most beautiful, the dream of democracy has given rise to unprecedented scenes of solidarity,” she wrote. “At its most terrifying, the dream, fueled by nihilism, xenophobia, and hatred, has seemed like a nightmare.”

2020 Flora Lewis Fellowship winner Meg Bernhard and freelance photographer Anna Surinyach have been reporting from Barcelona on Instagram for the Virginia Quarterly Review about how the pandemic and lockdown are affecting the city’s economically vulnerable.

Alissa Greenberg, the David R. Schweisberg winner in 2016, is joining the PBS science documentary show NOVA as digital editor and staff writer. She will also continue to cover California stories on a freelance basis.

UPDATES

2019 Sally Jacobsen Fellowship winner and OPC member Krithika Varagur will kick off a series of online events starting this evening from 7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. with moderator Scott Shane, a longtime national security reporter for The New York Times. She launched her book, The Call: Inside the Global Saudi Religious Project, on Tuesday this week. Tonight’s event is hosted by The Ballot, a watchdog media group covering global elections that Varagur contributes to. Her book delves into Saudi Arabia’s far-reaching campaign of influence across the Muslim world. Below are more upcoming dates on Varagur’ virtual book tour.

  • Tuesday, April 28 – Chicago Council on Global Affairs (Zoom) – 2:00 PM EST – A lecture and discussion moderated by former diplomat Cécile Shea
  • Thursday, April 30 – NY Southeast Asia Network (Zoom) – 5:00 PM EST – A book talk with NYU professor and New York Review of Books writer Margaret Scott
  • Tuesday, May 19 – London Middle East Institute (Zoom) – Book launch with Dr. Adam Hanieh, political scientist at SOAS University of London
  • Thursday, May 21 – Politics and Prose (Most likely Zoom) – 7:00 PM EST – Reading in conversation with James Palmer, senior editor at Foreign Policy
  • Thursday, May 28 – A Writer’s Desk with Simon Worrall (Facebook live) – 12:00 PM EST – book talk and author interview

OPC member Aryana Michelle Noroozi published a story on April 13 in the COVID-19 outbreak in Iran and the country’s restricted reopening. The piece, “What I’m Hearing About the Virus in Iran,” was selected by the Medium curators to be featured on the outlet’s World page and newsletter. Noroozi also published a story about the working conditions of home health care workers in New York City who lacked proper protective equipment. She wrote the piece, “An Undocumented Home Healthcare Worker Fears for Her Patient and Herself” through the lens of an undocumented worker.

OPC member Judith Matloff of the Dart Center for Journalism and Trauma participated in a webinar on Monday to discuss “Covering the Pandemic: Photographers on the Front Lines.” She gave tips on how to recognize and deal with trauma that may arise from the stresses of COVID-19 coverage. “Without a doubt, we’re all under incredible emotional stress at the moment,” she said. “The important things is to look at how we can build up our own self defenses and our own social networks, so that we can cope better with this extraordinary situation that we’re all undergoing.” She Matloff journalists in the field should maintain a “buddy system” to check in with and maintain contact, and that editors should remind photojournalists how important their work is for society documenting this moment in history. The event was co-sponsored by the Earth Institute at Columbia University and Magnum Photos. Other panelists included Alex Majoli, Magnum Photographer, based in Italy and covering the pandemic for Vanity Fair; Thomas Dworzak, Magnum Photographer, based in Paris; Enri Canaj, Magnum Photographer, based in Greece; Newsha Tavakolian, Magnum Photographer, based in Iran; and Bryan Woolston, NPPA, photographer for Reuters, AP and Getty Images.

OPC member and Getty photojournalist John Moore has been covering coronavirus from the front lines with first responders in New York, and many of his photos were featured in a Los Angeles Times slide show on April 10. His photos depict medics at work intubating patients during emergency calls, shuttling them into ambulances, illustrating exhausted faces of workers carrying out the grind of decontamination and care. OPC President Pancho Bernasconi of Getty Images touted Moore’s work along with others in his Twitter feed. He shared one image of patients lying in an emergency vehicle, and another image depicting nurses in New York reacting to a caravan thanking medical workers.

OPC member Ted Anthony provided text for a haunting Associated Press slide show and essay on April 13 covering New York City’s abandoned streets. AP photographer Wong Maye-E rode a motorcycle around the city, with photo editor Enric Marti driving, to capture images across the city in 12 separate trips. Anthony wrote” “In its best days, in its highest moments, New York City is dizzying. Times Square glows. Penn Station pulses. Wall Street teems with the ambitious. The highways are jammed with trucks and taxis and Ubers and Lyfts, transporting the life of the city — its people, its goods — to and fro. Underneath it all, from Manhattan to the boroughs and back, industrial-strength subways carry industrial-strength people of all shapes and hues from home to work and back again. Then there are the worst days, the hardest moments. These days. Today, New York City is dizzying in a different way.”

OPC member Sudarsan Raghavan filed a piece for The Washington Post on April 13 covering Libya’s intensifying war, with hospitals being targeted in Tripoli amid rising coronavirus infections that “is threatening an already shattered health system.” He wrote that the uptick in violence, which is at its worst since the 2011 Arab Spring, is being fueled in part by outside powers that supply weapons and mercenaries despite a U.N. arms embargo.

OPC member David M. Halbfinger and his New York Times colleague Mohammed Najib filed a piece on April 9 about how workers returning to the West Bank from Israel have been a vector for COVID-19, and how that had inflamed longstanding tensions. As many as 8,000 workers returned through checkpoints over a one-week period, end neither side said they would be able to test for the virus, he wrote, an “some workers avoid the checkpoints altogether, slipping easily through gaps in the separation barrier between the West Bank and Israel.”

The Associated Press has published a slide show of images 32 images depicting how COVID-19 is threatening Egypt’s economy from photographer Nariman El-Mofty, who won this year’s Citation for Excellence in the Robert Capa Gold Medal Award category, and won the 2018 Olivier Rebbot Award. The photos show Cairo’s empty streets and people coping with social isolation.

OPC member Sudarsan Raghavan filed a piece for The Washington Post on April 13 covering Libya’s intensifying war, with hospitals being targeted in Tripoli amid rising coronavirus infections that “is threatening an already shattered health system.” He wrote that the uptick in violence, which is at its worst since the 2011 Arab Spring, is being fueled in part by outside powers that supply weapons and mercenaries despite a U.N. arms embargo.