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2021 Center Awards

Watch the full 2021 Award Ceremony honoring Ron Magers and Jeremy Gorner on April 22, 2021.

Legendary Chicago news anchor Ron Magers and Chicago Tribune police reporter Jeremy Gorner received awards on April 22, 2021 from DePaul University’s Center for Journalism Integrity & Excellence. The center honored Magers with the Distinguished Journalist Award and Gorner with the Distinguished Alumnus Award for work that embodies the highest princi​ples of journalism, including truth, accuracy, fairness and context.

The awards for Magers and Gorner were originally slated for 2020 but delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Magers’ career spanned more than 50 years in TV news, including more than three decades in Chicago. He is known for deftly handling difficult breaking news coverage. Gorner, who graduated from DePaul with a bachelor’s degree in political science, has investigated police misconduct while covering crime and breaking news at the Chicago Tribune.

Center co-directors Carol Marin and Don Moseley presented the awards at a virtual event. Previous recipients of the award include:

  • Lester Holt, "NBC Nightly News"(Distinguished Journalist Award)
  • Jane Pauley, "CBS Sunday Morning" (Distinguished Journalist Award)
  • Dean Baquet, The New York Times (Distinguished Journalist Award)
  • Ben Welsh, Los Angeles Times (Distinguished Alumni Award)
  • Ann Pistone, ABC7 Chicago (Distinguished Alumni Award)
  • Lourdes Duarte, WGN-TV (Distinguished Alumni Award)

About the Honorees

Magers built public’s trust in local news

Ron Magers, Recipient of the Distinguished Journalist Award

Ron Magers
Ron Magers (Photo by Linda Schwartz Photography)

Ron Magers began his television career in 1965 at KEZI-TV in Eugene, Oregon, as a reporter and news contributor. He continued his ascent as a news anchor with KPIX-TV in San Francisco and KSTP-TV in Minneapolis.

He arrived in Chicago in 1981 and anchored newscasts on Chicago’s WMAQ-TV, sharing the news desk with Marin. Together they covered breaking news and politics for more than a decade, including election nights with legendary columnist Mike Royko. In 1997, Magers and Marin left the station in protest when talk show host Jerry Springer was hired as a social commentator on the 10 p.m. news.

Magers went on to a long and successful career at ABC7 Chicago, anchoring the 5 p.m. and 10 p.m. newscasts and earning top ratings. He retired in 2016. 

Gorner’s crime coverage gives critical context

Jeremy Gorner, Recipient of the Distinguished Alumnus Award

Jeremy Gorner
Jeremy Gorner (Photo by Chris Walker/Chicago Tribune)

Jeremy Gorner studied political science at DePaul and, as a senior, frequently reported for the school's student-run newspaper, The DePaulia. He went on to intern with the Lerner Community Newspapers, then a collection of weeklies serving readers on Chicago's North and Northwest sides and some northern suburbs.

Six months after graduating in 2004, Gorner started his first paid journalism gig as a reporter for the now-defunct New City News Service, formerly known as the City News Bureau of Chicago, a boot camp for up-and-coming reporters. He joined the Chicago Tribune in 2006 to cover crime and breaking news for its online news desk.

Gorner now is a beat reporter for the Tribune's Metro staff, covering the Chicago Police Department. Since starting that beat nine years ago, Gorner has covered the 2012 NATO Summit, the rise in city violence, and conducted investigations into the Laquan McDonald shooting scandal and other police accountability issues.

Adapted from DePaul Newsroom.