URI professor receives top New England journalism award

KINGSTON, R.I. — October 8, 1999 — A University of Rhode Island professor, well-known among journalists for her advocacy of open government, is a recipient of the prestigious Yankee Quill Award. URI Associate Professor of Journalism Linda Lotridge Levin is one of four individuals who will receive the award, the highest honor given by fellow New England journalists. The Yankee Quill awards are sponsored by the New England Society of Newspaper Editors and the New England Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists. Levin will be recognized for contributing significantly over many years to the quality, prestige and advancement of New England journalism. As a Yankee Quill award winner, she will become a Fellow of the Academy of New England Journalists. “I am pleased to be recognized for my work, and I am especially honored to be in the company of some of the giants of New England journalism,” Levin said. Acknowledged to be a leading authority on media law in Rhode Island, Levin is a founder of ACCESS/RI, a group of media and non-media members that fights secrecy and seeks to foster openness in government. For many years, she shouldered the cause of open meetings, open records and freedom of the press in Rhode Island. She was a leader of an ACCESS study that demonstrated that despite state laws to the contrary, Rhode Island police departments, municipal administrations and school departments routinely barred access to records that are supposed to be public. The findings caused the state’s Police Chiefs’ Association to take steps to correct the departments’ behavior. A member of the journalism faculty at URI since 1986, her recent books are To Understand: The History of a 10-year Dialogue between New England and Soviet Editors, and Mass Communications Law in Rhode Island. Levin is a former president of and currently the secretary of The Rhode Island Press Association. Levin is a former reporter and editor for The Providence Journal. A reception and banquet will be held Thursday, Oct. 28 at 6 p.m. at the Officers’ Club, Hanscom Air Force Base, Bedford, Mass. Dinner is $45 per person, and reservations must be pre-paid. Checks should be made payable to the New England Society of Newspaper Editors, 70 Washington St., Salem, MA. -xxx- For further Information: Dave Lavallee 401-874-2116