Washington, D.C., May 16 - Terry Gross, the host of Fresh Air with Terry Gross who is widely recognized as one of the country's best interviewers, today received the 2003 Edward R. Murrow Award from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB).
"Terry Gross embodies public radio's core values: curiosity, intelligence, respect for her subjects, and concern for listeners," said Robert T. Coonrod, CPB president and CEO, in presenting the award at the public radio conference in New Orleans. "She is devoted to the craft of interviewing, spending endless hours preparing for each session. As a result, Terry has shaped the style and sensibility of public radio's talk format."
CPB presents the Murrow Award annually to individuals who foster public radio's quality and service and shape its direction. The award is named for the legendary reporter, producer, executive and government official, who championed responsible, courageous and imaginative uses of the electronic media during his distinguished 30-year career. It is the industry's most prestigious honor.
"Its an honor to be in the company of the other Murrow Award recipients," said Gross. "The award is also a tribute to the efforts of Fresh Air's dedicated staff, and its executive producer Danny Miller."
Fresh Air, the hour-long magazine of contemporary arts and issues, for more than 25 years has featured Gross' in-depth interviews with prominent cultural and entertainment figures, as well as distinguished experts on current affairs and news. Gross has conducted more than 5,000 interviews during the program's national run -- plus thousands more during Fresh Air's 12 years as a local program. A variety of top publications count Gross among the country's leading interviewers. Salon pronounced her "The maestro of conversation." The show gives interviews as much time as needed, and complements them with comments from well-known critics and commentators. The program's Peabody Award citation credits Fresh Air with "probing questions, revelatory interviews and unusual insights."
Gross began her career in public radio in 1973, at WBFO in Buffalo. Soon after, she became producer and host of Fresh Air, then a live, daily show broadcast locally, at WHYY in 1975. A weekly, half-hour edition of the show premiered nationally in 1985, and soon won an International Radio Festival Gold Medal and a prestigious Ohio State Award. Fresh Air premiered nationally in its current hour-long version in 1987, designed as the lead-in to All Things Considered.
Gross earned a bachelor's degree in English and a M.Ed. in Communications from the State University of New York (SUNY) at Buffalo. She has received honorary degrees from Drexel University, Haverford College and Princeton University, and a 1993 Distinguished Alumni Award from SUNY Buffalo.
Fresh Air is produced by WHYY-FM in Philadelphia. Each week more than 4 million people tune in to the show's thought-provoking conversations broadcast on some 425 National Public Radio (NPR) stations across the country, as well as in Europe and Japan via satellite.
The Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB), a private, nonprofit corporation created by Congress in 1967, is the steward of the federal government's investment in public broadcasting. It helps support the operations of more than 1,400 locally-owned and -operated public television and radio stations nationwide, and is the largest single source of funding for research, technology, and program development for public radio, television and related online services.