A debate we often have in journalism is how do we determine when reporting ends and activism begins? It can be a fine line to define, as all of us as reporters, editors, producers—as
concerned humans—care about the health of the planet and the future of our children. I believe that with adequate transparency there is plenty of room in the tent for people from all backgrounds to participate in this sometimes crazy, always important world we call journalism.
SEJ’s Wall of Heroes should be big and broad and constantly growing and evolving, never to be torn down. There is an infinite number of journalists who help build this wall; the truth is SEJ members and environmental reporters are all heroes. I add these names to the diverse list of journalists who make a difference every day.
Antonia Juhasz, author and investigative journalist. I first met Antonia covering the BP oil spill in 2010, tracking the endless tide of oily tarballs that smothered wildlife and beaches across four states in the Gulf. Antonia’s tireless career reporting on the secrets of the fossil fuel industry, and her dedication to social justice issues affected by its pollution, is one reason we know as much as we do about its impacts—and its future.
Elizabeth Kolbert, author and science journalist. Elizabeth Kolbert’s Pulitzer Prize-winning book, The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History, left me speechless and determined to act. Her scientific deep-dive into the world of extinction explained the gravity of changes to our complex natural world in a way only masterful writers can do. Kolbert helped awaken us all to rapidly changing global climate effects, making her a hero to all who value preserving nature around us.
Sammy Roth is a prolific reporter who covers climate and energy topics for the Los Angeles Times. His in-depth reporting on the natural gas and fossil fuel industry and its devastating impacts on local communities is must-read material for anyone who subscribes to the methane as a “bridge fuel” theory. Sammy’s weekly Boiling Point newsletter is essential reading about growing climate and energy fights in America’s west, and the powerful interests behind them. He deserves his place on SEJ’s Wall of Heroes.
Please join me in #HonoringTheHeroes of journalism on Twitter. Additionally, a donation to SEJ in any amount will earn all of your honorees a spot on the growing Wall of Heroes, and those funds will go toward the many SEJ programs benefiting journalists.