For Immediate Release: March 10, 2010
Contact: Katie Rudolph, krudolph[at]presspartners[dot]org


Alfred Friendly Press Fellowships Names 2010 Fellows


Washington, DC —In response to the changing media landscape in the U.S. and around the world, for the first time in its 26 year history, the Alfred Friendly Press Fellowships (AFPF) is working with both traditional and nontraditional American news organizations to host its Fellows—mid-career journalists from countries with an emerging free press who spend six months in the U.S. reporting in American newsrooms. Our goal is to provide the most valuable learning opportunities for these journalists so that they return home at the conclusion of their fellowships to share with their journalistic colleagues the new skills and knowledge learned in the United States.

The 2010 Fellows—one each from China, Egypt, Kenya, Pakistan and Russia—will be hosted by six news organizations including the investigative reporting non-profits Center for Public Integrity and ProPublica and the Missouri School of Journalism. Traditional hosts are the Chicago TribuneLos Angeles Times and Wall Street Journal. Given the downsizing of print newsrooms, the innovative journalism going on at non-profits and universities, and the need of newsrooms overseas to learn of current tools in news distribution such as cell phone technology and social networking, we are pleased to be working with these hosts.

In the last few years, AFPF’s funding model has changed. In addition to the core support we receive from the Alfred and Jean Friendly Foundation, Andrews McMeel Universal Foundation, Chicago Tribune, Ethics and Excellence in Journalism Foundation, Open Society Institute, Poynter Institute and Washington Post, we have established partnerships with two foundations and two media companies whereby we train journalists for them. Our partnership with the Daniel Pearl Foundation, now in its eighth year, brings journalists from the Middle East, North Africa and South Asia to honor The Wall Street Journal reporter who was kidnapped and killed in Pakistan in 2002. The Paul Klebnikov Prize for Excellence in Journalism, new to AFPF this year, seeks to honor Paul Klebnikov’s life and work by supporting the development of independent media in Russia through fellowship opportunities in the United States. Klebnikov, Forbes Russia’s first editor, was killed in Moscow in 2004. The two media companies with which we have partnerships are China Daily and Nation Media Group of East Africa, the former in its second year and the latter in its fourth.

AFPF was established in 1983 by the former managing editor of The Washington Post and 1968 recipient of the Pulitzer Prize for International Reporting for his coverage of the Middle East War of 1967. Since the program began in 1984, AFPF has trained 267 journalists from 78 developing countries. This year’s class will arrive in Washington on March 24 to begin their fellowships with a two-week orientation program including a one-week journalism bootcamp co-taught by Missouri School of Journalism Professor Randy Smith and retired journalist Jonathan Friendly—both board members of the Alfred and Jean Friendly Foundation, the main funders of AFPF.

After their orientation in Washington, the Fellows will report for their hosts until the end of August. Fellows receive additional training by The Poynter Institute and will spend a week at the Missouri School of Journalism during the summer. The Fellowships’ purpose is to enable men and women who will be news media leaders in their own countries to observe free press standards being exercised in the United States, to put those values into daily practice with guidance from American colleagues, and to transfer knowledge gained through the program to colleagues at home.

The Alfred Friendly Press Fellowships is one of the most successful and admired programs in international education for journalists. It is the only program to offer international journalists a non-academic, long-term, hands-on experience in a single news organization. As journalism changes in the U.S. and elsewhere, the AFPF has responded by providing a program that is relevant to today’s news challenges.

The 2010 Fellows—who cover business, corruption, crime, environment, militancy, politics, security, social issues and sports—their home publications, home countries, and host publications are:

Mr. Nasry Esmat, Al-Ahram and, Egypt, ProPublica and Los Angeles Times
Mr. Washington Gikunju, Business Daily, Kenya, Missouri School of Journalism and Columbia Missourian 
Ms. Lei Lei, China Daily, China, Chicago Tribune^
Mr. Aoun Sahi, The News on Sunday, Pakistan, The Wall Street Journal
Mr. Roman Shleynov, Novaya Gazeta, Russia, Center for Public Integrity+

* Daniel Pearl Fellow
+ Paul Klebnikov Prize for Excellence in Journalism Fellow
^ Helen Baldwin Fellow (given in honor of Alfred Friendly’s sister)


AFPF Advisory Committee
Jonathan Friendly

Kenneth F. Bunting
Milton Coleman
Nicholas Friendly
Craig Matsuda
Lucinda F. Murphy
David Nalle
Marianne Scott
John M. Sirek
Randall D. Smith
Ellen Soeteber
Susan Talalay
Howard A. Tyner
Peter S. Young

Alfred Friendly Press Partners Mission:  In the belief that just societies must have a vigorous and principled free press, Alfred Friendly Press Partners aims to build strong newsrooms that make possible an informed citizenry. We work to strengthen skills and values by placing talented international journalists in U.S. newsrooms and by establishing long-term training partnerships with news organizations that share our goal of fostering professional excellence.