Bob Schieffer to Receive Walter Cronkite Award

May 21, 2013

Bob Schieffer
Bob Schieffer (CBS)

Bob Schieffer, the award-winning CBS News correspondent and longtime anchor of “Face the Nation,” will be the 2013 recipient of the Walter Cronkite Award for Excellence in Journalism, Arizona State University announced today.

Schieffer will accept the 30th annual award, given by the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication, at a luncheon ceremony Oct. 29 at the Sheraton Phoenix Downtown Hotel.

“Walter Cronkite is who I wanted to be when I was a young reporter,” Schieffer said. “He is who I still want to be so winning an award with Walter’s name on it means as much to me as any recognition I have ever received.”

CBS News President David Rhodes said "there's nobody better than Bob in this business, and nobody better to work with, too."

Schieffer is the network's chief Washington correspondent and also serves as anchor and moderator of “Face the Nation,” CBS News' Sunday public affairs broadcast. He contributes regularly to “The CBS Evening News,” where he served as interim anchor in 2005 and 2006.

With 56 years of reporting experience, Schieffer may be the most experienced broadcast reporter in Washington. He has spent the past 44 years reporting on politics and government for CBS, serving as the network’s chief Washington correspondent since 1982 and moderator of “Face the Nation” since 1991. He is one of the few journalists to have covered all four major beats in the nation’s capital – the White House, the Pentagon, the State Department and Capitol Hill.

Schieffer has moderated three presidential debates – in 2004, 2008 and 2012 – and has covered every presidential campaign and been a reporter or anchor at every Democratic and Republican national convention since 1972.

A native of Austin, Texas, who grew up in Fort Worth, Schieffer is a graduate of Texas Christian University and served three years in the U.S. Air Force. He began his journalism career as a reporter at the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, where in 1965 he became the first reporter from a Texas newspaper to report from Vietnam.

After returning from the war, he became news anchor at WBAP-TV Fort Worth/Dallas and then joined CBS News in 1969. He served as the network’s Pentagon correspondent from 1970 to 1974 and its White House correspondent from 1974 to 1979.

He began anchoring the CBS weekend newscasts in 1973 and continued anchoring for the next 23 years.

Following Dan Rather’s departure in 2005, Schieffer became anchor of the weekday evening news, where he served for two years until the arrival of Katie Couric. He then returned to the nation’s capital and as moderator of “Face the Nation.”

In 2005, TCU named its journalism school The Schieffer School of Journalism in his honor.

Earlier this year Schieffer was inducted into the Academy of Television Arts Hall of Fame and was also given the distinguished service award from the National Association of Broadcasters, an award that has gone previously to former President Ronald Reagan and Oprah Winfrey, among others. Schieffer is also a member of the Broadcasting & Cable Hall of Fame and the recipient of numerous awards, including seven Emmy Awards, one of which was for Lifetime Achievement, and two Sigma Delta Chi Awards. The National Press Foundation named him Broadcaster of the Year in 2002, and in 2003, the Radio-Television News Directors Association presented him with the Paul White Award, which also recognizes lifetime contributions to electronic journalism.

He also is the recipient of the Leonard Zeidenberg First Amendment award from the Radio Television News Directors Association and was named a "Living Legend" by the Library of Congress. Other awards include the International Radio and Television Society Foundation Award and the American News Women's Club Helen Thomas Award for Excellence in Journalism.

Schieffer is the author of four books. The New York Times bestsellers “This Just In: What I Couldn’t Tell You on TV” and "Bob Schieffer's America," as well as "Face the Nation: My Favorite Stories from the First 50 Years of the Award-winning News Broadcast” and "The Acting President."

“Schieffer epitomizes great broadcast journalism in the best tradition of Walter Cronkite,” said Cronkite Dean Christopher Callahan. “We’re thrilled to present him with this award and to have him share with our students some of what he has learned over a long and sterling career.”

Other Cronkite Award recipients include TV anchors Brian Williams, Diane Sawyer and Tom Brokaw, newspaper journalists Ben Bradlee, Helen Thomas and Bob Woodward and media executives Katharine Graham, Al Neuharth and Bill Paley. Cronkite personally presented the award during its first quarter-century. The CBS News anchor died in 2009.

The Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication, named in Cronkite’s honor in 1984, prepares the next generation of journalists in both the time-honored fundamentals embraced by Cronkite and the multimedia skills necessary to thrive as journalists in the digital age.

Housed in a $71 million state-of-the-art media complex in downtown Phoenix, the school has been featured in both The New York Times and The Times of London as a leader in 21st century journalism education. It is the home of the Carnegie-Knight News 21 initiative, the Donald W. Reynolds National Center for Business Journalism, Cronkite News Service, Cronkite NewsWatch and the New Media Innovation Lab.