Peabody announced that Dan Rather, the award-winning journalist whose career has spanned six decades, has won the Peabody Career Achievement Award. Dolly Parton presented Rather with the honor via video.
The University of Georgia Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication has been the home of Peabody since its founding in 1940.
Rather, who has interviewed every president since Eisenhower, was the CBS national evening news anchor from 1981-2006. Rather is being recognized for his commitment to helping Americans understand the events of the nation and the world for over six decades. Selected by the Peabody Board of Jurors, this honor is reserved for individuals whose work and commitment to broadcasting and digital media have left an indelible mark on the field and in American culture. Rather joins Carol Burnett, Rita Moreno, Cicely Tyson, and Sam Pollard as winners of the Peabody Career Achievement Award.
“Dan Rather’s remarkable career—from local news reporter and international correspondent to network anchor—is a textbook example not just of what quality reporting looks like, but how journalists serve democracy well,” said Jeffrey Jones, executive director of the Peabody Awards. “Spanning over six decades, Rather helped viewers understand and interpret some of the most traumatic historical events in our nation’s history, from the Kennedy assassination and the Vietnam War to 9/11 and more. We are happy to call attention to and celebrate his life’s work.”
It was also announced today that TV Rain (known in Russian as Dozhd) was recognized with the Peabody Journalistic Integrity Award, which honors the sustained achievement of the highest professional standards of journalism, as well as personal integrity in reporting the news in challenging times. TV Rain was Russia’s last independent television channel before it was shut down in March 2022 for its criticism of President Vladimir Putin and the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Its final broadcast was a blatant protest, with the entire staff walking off the set as the anchors said “no war.”
The Peabody Board of Jurors also made a special commendation to the journalists and filmmakers from around the world, including Peabody-winning documentarian Brent Renaud, who have risked their lives and died covering the violence and humanitarian crises in Ukraine. “We honor these courageous storytellers killed in their line of duty to bring the truth to the world, not just in Ukraine, but in India, Mexico, the Philippines, and globally,” noted Jones.
Dan Rather began his career in print and radio in Houston before landing a job at KHOU-TV, Houston’s local CBS’s affiliate, in 1960. He went on to become a national network correspondent and later CBS’s White House correspondent. Rather became the CBS evening news anchor in 1981, holding the position until 2006. During his time on air at CBS, Rather reported on and guided the nation through Kennedy’s assassination, the war in Vietnam, the Civil Rights Movement, Watergate, the Cold War, and 9/11. After leaving CBS, he hosted Dan Rather Reports for HDNet and The Big Interview on AXS TV. Rather currently serves as President and CEO of News and Guts, an independent production company that he founded to make high-quality, non-fiction content across traditional and digital platforms. Over the course of his career, Rather has won multiple Peabody Awards and numerous Emmy Awards.
Natalya Sindeyeva founded TV Rain in 2010 as an independent television channel. After the channel was banned from cable in 2014, it moved to an online broadcast. TV Rain has reported on the Russia-Ukraine conflict since its beginning, prompting the Russian justice ministry to declare it a “foreign agent” in 2021. TV Rain continued to report on the activities of the Kremlin, until the Russian telecommunications regulator Roskomnadzor blocked access to the channel because of its critical reporting on the Russian invasion of Ukraine. For its final broadcast, the entire TV Rain staff gathered on air at the news desk before walking off set, with the anchors saying “no war” as they exited. The broadcast then cut to a performance of Swan Lake, in reference to when Russian news channels played the ballet during the August 1991 Russian coup after they were banned from live coverage of the event.
The 30 winners of the 82nd Annual Peabody Awards will be named during a multi-day virtual celebration from June 6th through June 9th.