Pulitzer Center grantee Errin Haines was awarded the 2020 Vernon Jarrett Medal for Journalistic Excellence, a prize that honors journalists who have reported stories that are of significant importance or had a significant impact on some aspect of Black life in America.
Haines was recognized for her Pulitzer Center-supported project, Portraits of a Pandemic, which documents the lives of women of color during the coronavirus pandemic. The series was published by The 19th and The Philadelphia Inquirer and received additional support from the Lenfest Institute. Adam Serwer of The Atlantic was also awarded a 2020 Vernon Jarrett Medal.
Haines is editor-at-large for The 19th, a nonprofit newsroom covering politics and centering on women, and a contributor for MSNBC. She was previously a national writer on race for The Associated Press, and focused on the intersection of race, politics, and culture. Haines is a fellow at Georgetown University's Institute of Politics and Public Service for fall 2020.
Earlier this year, Pulitzer Center Outreach Coordinator Kayla Edwards spoke with Haines about her reporting for Portraits of a Pandemic and why representational coverage of the pandemic is critical.
“I think that’s probably the question I kept coming back to: Who isn’t being seen, and how can I make sure that they are seen and that we don’t leave them out of this?” Haines said in the interview. “Because if we’re not writing about certain folks, then it’s like the pandemic didn’t happen to them or that they weren’t part of our country’s story in this moment, and I don’t think that’s right.”
The Vernon Jarrett Medal for Journalistic Excellence, awarded by Morgan State University’s School of Global Journalism & Communication, is named for the late Vernon Jarrett, a pioneering African American columnist who wrote for the Chicago Defender, the Chicago Tribune, and the Chicago Sun-Times, and who used his columns and long-running radio and television shows to educate Americans about the nation’s legacy of slavery and segregation.