CHICAGO–(ENEWSPF)–May 15, 2015. A Roosevelt University journalism alumna is a member of a reporting team for a South Carolina newspaper that recently won a Pulitzer Prize for Public Service for a five-part series on domestic violence called “Till Death Do Us Part.”
Jennifer (Berry) Hawes, who graduated from Roosevelt in 1993, was part of a team of reporters for The Post and Courier, a daily newspaper in Charleston, S.C., that won the prestigious prize in late April.
“It’s a huge honor for the paper to win this,” said Hawes, who looked at the role culture in South Carolina has played in making the state one of the nation’s deadliest for women.
According to Hawes, “This project was really a team effort and it wouldn’t have happened without the support of The Post and Courier,” a publication that has been committed to making change for the better through reporting, even at a time when many other newspapers are cutting back on public service journalism.
As a student, Hawes took feature writing with Roosevelt University Associate Journalism Professor Linda Jones, who is now dean of undergraduate studies at the University.
“It was really Linda Jones who opened my eyes as a senior to the storytelling craft of journalism,” said Hawes, who moved to South Carolina, working at the Greenville News for five years before moving to The Post and Courier in 1998. “She instilled the importance of storytelling in me,” Hawes said of Jones, “and that’s what I’m really known for today.”
While at Roosevelt, Hawes was an associate editor for The Torch student newspaper. Jones remembers Hawes as one of her most talented student feature writers.
“I still use one of Jennifer’s stories in my feature writing classes as an example of first-rate work,” said Jones, who believes Hawes is the first Pulitzer Prize winner from Roosevelt’s journalism program.
The series “Till Death Do Us Part” is available for viewing at: http://www.pulitzer.org/works/2015-Public-Service. Besides the Pulitzer, the series has won a number of national awards and has been a catalyst for proposed change to domestic violence policies and laws in South Carolina.