Register reporter Erika I. Ritchie named national Gerald R. Ford Journalism Prize winner for military coverage

by in News

Erika I. Ritchie, military reporter for the Orange County Register and the Southern California News Group, has been named a winner of the Gerald R. Ford Journalism Prize for Distinguished Reporting in 2018.

The 32nd annual awards, sponsored by the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Foundation, honor “distinguished reporting on the presidency and national defense.”

Judges from the fields of academia and journalism awarded Ritchie honorable mention for “the kind of local, hard-nosed reporting that results from the development of trusted relationships” with military personnel.

Specifically, Ritchie was singled out for coverage of the dramatic rise in training accident fatalities in the military, the increase in women serving in combat roles, and the importance of preparing military personnel for civilian jobs once they leave active duty.

Other Ford prize winners for 2018 were Molly Ball, a national political correspondent for Time magazine, for her coverage of President Donald Trump’s relationship with Republican congressional leaders, an interview with former Attorney General Jeff Sessions, and the strategic work of the president’s legal team; and Jenna McLaughlin and Zach Dorfman of Yahoo News, for their reporting about a security compromise in a critical intelligence communications system.

Awards will be presented June 3 at The Capitol Hill Club in Washington, D.C.