Long Island University has announced the winners of their 67th Annual George Polk Awards in Journalism, which honor "reporters who advanced vital national conversations on race and gender relations with their masterful investigative reporting in 2015." The awards "place a premium on investigative and enterprising reporting that gains attention and achieves results." The annual awards were established in 1949 by LIU to commemorate George Polk, a CBS correspondent who was murdered in 1948 while covering the Greek civil war.
The Polk Awards include a wide variety of categories, yet only honor a single film-related category, for documentary film. This year, Matthew Heineman's "Cartel Land" has picked up the award for its fearless investigation of the drug war in Mexico. Other winners included groups from such prestigious outlets at The New York Times, The Washington Post, CBS News and The Wall Street Journal.
Of the honor, Heineman said, "'Cartel Land' seeks to give voice to the people of Mexico who suffer grievous harm from cartel violence and government corruption...This tremendous honor is for them, as well as over 90 journalists who have been killed since 2000 covering this conflict."
A special screening of the film will take place on Wednesday, April 6, at Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM).
All of the winners of the 2015 awards will be honored at a luncheon ceremony at The Grand Hyatt Hotel in Manhattan on Friday, April 8.