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Wednesday, 22 May 2013

CORRECTION: IPI Executive Board welcomes two new members

Miami Herald's John Yearwood elected IPI vice-chair 

By: Scott Griffen, Press Freedom Adviser for Latin America and the Caribbean

Newly elected IPI Vice-Chair John Yearwood (second from L) during IPI's mission to the Dominican Republic in April 2013. Photo: Genrís García.

Note: Please note corrections in paragraphs two and three regarding replacements and lengths of service.

VIENNA, May 22, 2013 - The International Press Institute (IPI) announced today that award-winning Palestinian journalist Daoud Kuttab and Miami Herald World Editor John Yearwood were elected to the IPI Executive Board during IPI's 62nd General Assembly, held on Monday in Amman, Jordan.

Previously elected as chair of IPI's North American Committee, Yearwood assumed the board seat of Ryan Blethen, associate publisher and director of new product strategies at The Seattle Times.  Yearwood was subsequently elected as an IPI Vice-Chair.  American board member Simon Li, former assistant managing editor of the Los Angeles Times retired from the board after two terms as vice-chair.  In recognition of his dedication to press freedom, Li was named a lifetime member of IPI.  He was also appointed Chairman Emeritus of IPI's North American Committee.  A replacement for Li has not yet been named.

Galina Sidorova, chairperson of the Foundation for Investigative Journalism - Foundation 19/29 (Russia), will remain IPI's chair for the coming two years.  Monjurul Ahsan Bulbul, editor-in-chief and CEO of Boishakhi TV (Bangladesh) and Pavol Múdry, founder and former general manager of SITA-Slovak News Agency (Slovakia) will remain as IPI's vice-chairs.

"IPI is greatly honoured to welcome Daoud Kuttab and John Yearwood as the newest members of IPI's Executive Board," IPI Deputy Director Anthony Mills said.  "Daoud and John bring with them collectively more than 50 years of international journalism experience, and a keen understanding of the challenges that journalists around the world face while doing their job of keeping the public informed.  Their shared enthusiasm for the profession of free journalism will contribute real vigour to IPI's support for a global free press."

John Yearwood has held the position of world editor of The Miami Herald since 2003. Previously, he served as national/international editor and assistant city editor for government and politics with the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. Before joining the Star-Telegram in 1999, Yearwood spent two years in the Caribbean as founding publisher/editor of IBIS, a general lifestyle magazine. Prior to IBIS, he spent 10 years at The Dallas Morning News, where he reported from Europe, Africa, Asia and the Caribbean.

An award-winning Palestinian journalist and media activist, Daoud Kuttab is the director-general of Community Media Network (CMN), a non-profit dedicated to advancing independent media in the Middle East. Amman.net, which Kuttab established in 2000, was the Arab world's first Internet radio station. His career in journalism began in 1980, when he started working in Palestinian print media, as well as in the audiovisual field as a documentary producer. In 1995, he co-founded the Arabic Media Internet Network (Amin.org) as a censorship-free Arab website.  Kuttab is a regular columnist for The Huffington Post, Palestine News Network, Al Arabiya.net and The Jordan Times, and received the IPI World Press Freedom Hero Award in 2000.

IPI's three-day 2013 World Congress and 62nd General Assembly, held in Amman, Jordan, came to a close yesterday evening with an address by Her Royal Highness Princess Rym Ali.  The Congress featured panels of leading editors, journalists, and media experts from around the world, with many of the discussions focusing on the Middle East and the relationship between the ARab Spring and the media.  The theme of this year's Congress was "Documenting Change-Empowering Media."

During the Congress, IPI's World Press Freedom Hero award was posthumously given to American reporter Marie Colvin and Japanese photojournalist Mika Yamamoto, both killed while covering the current conflict in Syria.  IPI also honoured Malaysian broadcast Radio Free Sarawak with its Free Media Pioneer award.

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