The worlds of law and journalism came together in Washington Thursday night to pay tribute to the First Amendment.
Over dinner at The Four Seasons Hotel in Georgetown, the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press honored one of its founders, Fred Graham, a former Court TV anchor and New York Times U.S. Supreme Court correspondent, as well as Politico White House reporter Josh Gerstein, C-SPAN Executive Chairman Brian Lamb and Gannett Co. Inc. Vice President and Senior Associate General Counsel Barbara Wall, for their dedication to promoting government transparency and press freedom.
Before a crowd of more than 400 guests, Graham, a Vanderbilt University Law School graduate, received the first Reporters Committee Distinguished Service Award, which the 42-year-old nonprofit group will rename the Fred Graham Distinguished Service Award. The organization, which provides free legal assistance to journalists, gave its First Amendment Award to Gerstein, Lamb and Wall.
John Fahey, chairman and chief executive office of the National Geographic Society, and Katharine Weymouth, chief executive officer of Washington Post Media and publisher of The Washington Post, were the co-chairs of the dinner. Pierre Thomas, chief U.S. Justice Department correspondent for ABC News, and Judy Woodruff, senior correspondent and co-anchor of the PBS NewsHour, were the hosts.
Tony Mauro, The National Law Journal's Supreme Court correspondent, is the chairman of the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press Steering Committee.