AMES, Iowa – Margaret “Margy” Chamberlin accepted the 2017 James W. Schwartz Award Oct. 27 at a presentation ceremony at Hamilton Hall. The award honors Margy and her late husband, Gene, for their distinguished service to journalism as longtime publishers of the Mobridge (South Dakota) Tribune.
Both Iowa State alumni, Gene (’54, agricultural journalism) and Margy (’55, general sciences) shared a passion for journalism education.
In 2007, the Chamberlins established one of the Greenlee School’s signature programs, the Chamberlin Lecture series, to bring national perspectives in news and advertising to campus. After Gene died in 2009, the Chamberlin family continued to support the lecture series until its conclusion in fall 2016.
The Chamberlin Lecture has featured Pulitzer Prize-winning opinion page editor Paul Gigot of The Wall Street Journal; ABC’s “Nightline” anchor Juju Chang; Eugene Robinson, Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist for The Washington Post; Clarence Page, Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist for the Chicago Tribune; Rick Green, former president and publisher of The Des Moines Register and Vanity Fair contributing editor Bethany McLean, among others.
In conjunction with the Iowa Newspaper Foundation, the couple’s gift also brought a Chamberlin/INF Fellow to campus each year. The fellows, all leading Iowa reporters or editors, worked with students in Greenlee journalism classes.
With the conclusion of the lecture series, Margy continues to honor Gene’s legacy by sponsoring internship scholarships for Greenlee students who share his ambition of working in community journalism at a small weekly paper.
Tyler Julson, senior in journalism and mass communication, received the inaugural Chamberlin Scholarship for Internships in Community Journalism to support his 2017 summer internship as sports and general reporter at the Albert Lea (Minnesota) Tribune.
“We wanted to honor Margy and Gene because their family-owned newspapers have played a key role in community journalism. The Chamberlins have also contributed enormously to the development of our students over many years. Their family is a treasure to our school,” said Angela Powers, director of the Greenlee School.
The James W. Schwartz Award is the highest honor conferred by the Greenlee School of Journalism and Communication. It is awarded in honor of James Schwartz, department chair of the school from 1965-1977 and a 32-year member of the faculty. The Schwartz Award has been presented since 1978 to leaders in journalism and related fields. Previous honorees include four Pulitzer Prize winners, distinguished broadcast journalists, authors, advertising and public relations executives, newspaper and magazine publishers and leading writers in a variety of specialty areas. The school’s advisory council and faculty nominate candidates and faculty members select the winner.