On Friday, June 8th, the Society of Professional Journalists presented Bernard “Barney” McCoy, Christine Lesiak, Luis-Peon Casanova, and Paul Pytlowany with the national Sigma Delta Chi Award for excellence in journalism for the documentary “Black Jack Pershing: Love and War.”
The Sigma Delta Chi Awards ceremony was held at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. The awards recognize the best in professional journalism in categories covering print, radio, television, newsletters, art/graphics, online and research.
The Sigma Delta Chi judges praised the documentary for its meticulous research and revelations about General Pershing’s personal life that was an important part of his historic career. “Truly a work of distinction,” wrote the judges. “While production borrowed more than a page from Ken Burns, they did so in expert fashion and it didn’t seem gimmicky in the least. An enthralling piece of documentary filmmaking.”
“Black Jack Pershing: Love and War” tells the life story of Gen. John J. Pershing whose roots ran deep in 20th century America. He commanded 2 million U.S. troops that helped win World War I and changed the world. America became a global superpower, and Pershing rose to be his nation’s highest-ranking military officer. But hidden beneath Pershing’s iron exterior was a man who endured great personal tragedy and heartbreak.
Bernard “Barney” McCoy, producer of the documentary, is a professor of broadcasting in the College of Journalism and Mass Communications at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.
Luis Peon-Casanova, primary videographer on the project, is an assistant professor of practice in broadcasting in the College of Journalism and Mass Communications at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.
Christina Lesiak, an award-winning story consultant on the project, is an executive producer at NET, Nebraska’s PBS station.
Paul Pytlowany, primary video editor on the project, is a senior videographer and production manager at CBS Detroit
“Black Jack Pershing: Love and War” is a co-production of McCoy’s Painted Rock Productions and NET, Nebraska’s PBS station. Production support for the documentary was provided by the College of Journalism and Mass Communications. It received funding from Lowell Vestal, Sandra S. Pershing, Humanities Nebraska, University of Nebraska–Lincoln’s Research Council, and the Gilbert M. and Martha H. Hitchcock Foundation.
For more information contact: PershingLoveandWar@gmail.com
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