HARRISBURG, Pa. (Sept. 10, 2015) — The Pennsylvania NewsMedia Association (PNA) is pleased to announce that John Baer, a reporter and columnist for the Philadelphia Daily News, is the recipient of the Association’s 2015 Benjamin Franklin Award for Excellence.
Established in 1998, the award recognizes individuals who have performed an outstanding service or accomplishment to their newspapers; to the news media industry; to their local communities; or to the PNA, that reflected positively on the news media industry in Pennsylvania.
As explained by Mark Scolforo in his nomination letter, Baer has provided exceptional political coverage in Pennsylvania since he joined the Philadelphia Daily News in 1987. In addition to his work as a reporter and columnist, he helped found the Pennsylvania Press Club, regularly teaches at colleges and universities in the Philadelphia region, serves as a mentor to aspiring journalists, and has made innumerable contributions to the media landscape in Pennsylvania and to his community.
Baer’s editor at the Philadelphia Daily News, Gar Joseph, said, “Readers see him as their champion, the guy who smacks the politicians when they deserve it. Whenever there is a big story in state government, the first thing I think of is, ‘I wonder what Baer’s take is on this?’ I suspect there’s a couple of generations of people across the state asking the same question.”
The PNA Benjamin Franklin Award for Excellence will be presented Nov. 12, 2015, during the PNA Annual Convention, held in Hershey, Pa.
The PNA, founded in 1925, is the nonprofit trade association for print and online media in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Its mission is to advance the business interests of Pennsylvania news media organizations and to promote a free and independent press. It has more than 300 newspaper and media-related members, including daily, weekly, and college newspapers and online publications.