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Faye Flam of Bloomberg receives $75,000 Pulliam Fellowship for Editorial Writing


Matthew Kent, SPJ Program Coordinator, 317-920-4788, mkent@spj.org
Zoë Berg, SPJ Communications Coordinator, 317-920-4785, zberg@spj.org

INDIANAPOLIS – Faye Flam, a science columnist for Bloomberg Opinion, has been chosen for the 2020 Eugene C. Pulliam Fellowship for Editorial Writing.

Flam plans to spend the next year studying the consequences of misinformation, conflicting statements and confusion surrounding medical issues. With her deep background in science and science journalism, she will look at how the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted broader problems with health news consumption, medical advice and practice, advertising and political polarization.

“The topic couldn’t be more timely. The last few months have driven home the disconnect between expertise and magical thinking. Like journalists, public health professionals wrestle with frustration in trying to separate fact from alternative reality,” said Todd Gillman, Washington Bureau Chief of The Dallas Morning News, chair of the judging panel. “But during a pandemic, the stakes are life and death, not mere political advantage. Faye Flam’s rare combination of scientific and journalistic insight can, we hope, provide much needed guidance to us all.”

The $75,000 fellowship is awarded annually by the SPJ Foundation.

This year’s judges were Gillman and Jay Evensen, senior editorial columnist for the Deseret News, both members of the Society of Professional Journalists Foundation Board of Directors, and Tim Steller, metro columnist for the Arizona Daily Star and 2019 Pulliam Editorial Fellow.

"Faye Flam provided judges with the perfect project for 2020. As an accomplished science writer, she has the unique ability to explain complex concepts in ways average people can understand, and she is used to viewing science and medicine with a critical eye,” said Evensen. “The world needs a clear voice right now examining the truth, misinformation, contradictions and confusion surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, and she is one who can deliver. I’m excited to see how she puts the fellowship to use."

Learn more about the award and see a list of previous winners here.

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