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Shane Harris, Reporting on National Defense

2010 Journalism Prize Recipient

Shane Harris, Senior Writer for the “Washingtonian “, has won the 24th annual Gerald R. Ford Prize for Distinguished Reporting on National Defense. The $5,000 award recognizes journalists whose high standards for accuracy and substance help foster a better public understanding of National Defense. This year, the award will be presented by Steve Ford, son ofthe late President Gerald R. Ford and Chairman ofthe Gerald R. Ford Presidential Foundation, at a National Press Club luncheon in June. Following the presentation of the award, General Brent Scowcroft will address the audience.

When announcing their decision to award Shane Harris the Gerald R. Ford Prize for Distinguished Reporting on National Defense in 2010, the judges issued the following statement.

“The judges felt that the body of work submitted by Mr. Harris showcased some of the most important cross-cutting challenges of our times – often writing about issues with which the nation is still coming to grips: His story on the laws of war raised important questions about standards of warfare in an age of new technological capabilities. The judges noted that his article anticipated issues that are today being raised in the conflict in Libya. In Hacking the Bad Guys, he highlighted America’s struggle to cope with a new type of warfare that will impact the nation’s security as well as its economic competitiveness. His gripping tale of waste and delay highlighted a decade’s long struggle to purchase a new generation fuel tanker, noting that “today’s tanker pilots are flying airplanes first flown by their grandfathers and the pilots who will fly the new generation of tanker haven’t been born yet.” His article on the National Counterterrorism Center described the nation’s struggle to manage the information needed to prevent future terrorist attacks.

The judges were particularly impressed by Mr. Harris’s ability to illuminate complex policy issues while maintaining a fair and balanced approach on topics that are often highly polarized.”

The judges for this year’s contest were:
Chair, Debra van Opstal, Senior Fellow, Resilience Policy, Center for National Policy; Robert Holzer, Principal Analyst, National Security Programs, Gryphon Technologies, and recipient of the 1998 Gerald R. Ford Journalism Prize for Distinguished Reporting on National Defense; David M. Olive, Principal at Catalyst Partners with more than 30 years experience in business, politics, law, and public affairs, including establishment of The Washington Homeland Security Roundtable; Erik Peterson, Director of the Global Business Policy Council at AT Kearney and Senior Associate at the Center for Strategic and International Studies; Karen Scowcroft, Senior Vice President and Chief Counsel- Financial Services for CIT Group Inc.

The Gerald R. Ford Presidential Foundation sponsors the Gerald R. Ford Journalism Prizes for Distinguished Reporting on the Presidency and Distinguished Reporting on National Defense to recognize and encourage thoughtful, insightful, and enterprising work by journalists covering the presidency and national defense. The Foundation is a private, nonprofit, nonpartisan corporation whose programs are supported entirely by contributions and bequests in an effort to honor President Ford’s sustained commitment to public service.

For more information about the annual prize or previous winners contact: Joe Calvaruso, Gerald R. Ford Presidential Foundation, 303 Pearl Street NW, Grand Rapids, MI 49504-5353, (616) 254-0397, jcalvaruso@38foundation.org or visit our website at http://www.geraldrfordfoundation.org .

This year’s winner:
An author and journalist, Shane Harris has spent the past decade writing about national security and counterterrorism. Shane is currently senior writer for Washingtonian magazine, and he writes for other national publications and frequently speaks to the public and the news media. He is the author of the critically-acclaimed book The Watchers.

Prior to joining Washingtonian, in 2010, Shane was a staff correspondent for National Journal for five years. Before that post, he was the technology editor and a staff correspondent at Government Executive magazine, the premiere publication covering management in the federal government. Shane also was the managing editor for Movieline magazine in Los Angeles, for which he covered the film industry and oversaw the work ofthe publication’s editorial staff and its Web site. Shane began his journalism career in 1999, as the research coordinator and a writer for Governing magazine in Washington, where he covered issues and trends affecting state and
local government officials nationwide.

Shane graduated from Wake Forest University with a B.A. in Politics in 1998. He is also a fiction writer. While living in Los Angeles, he helped found and served as the artistic director of a sketch comedy troupe. Shane is a Sundance Film Festival screenwriting fmalist. For his work on Chinese cyber espionage, Shane received an honorable mention from the judges of the Edgar A. Poe Award, given by the White House Correspondents’ Association for excellence in coverage of news of national or regional significance.