May 10, 2016 – Washington, DC — The International Women’s Media Foundation (IWMF) is pleased to announce Adriane Ohanesian as the winner of the 2016 Anja Niedringhaus Courage in Photojournalism Award. The award recognizes the exemplary work of women photojournalists who overcome extraordinary challenges to bring us images of pressing global issues.
Now in its second year, the award was created through a generous grant from the Howard G. Buffett Foundation to pay tribute to the strength and dedication of Pulitzer Prize-winning Associated Press photographer Anja Niedringhaus, who was tragically killed while reporting in Afghanistan in 2014. Niedringhaus received the IWMF Courage in Journalism Award in 2005.
Lynsey Addario and Paula Bronstein received honorable mentions for the 2016 award. All three women will be recognized at a reception in Washington, DC on Thursday, June 9, 2016.
“We are proud to recognize this year’s Award honorees, who are a credit to their profession and to Anja’s legacy,” said IWMF Executive Director Elisa Lees Muñoz. “These remarkable and brave women are revealing difficult truths around the world through their pictures, and the Niedringhaus Award celebrates that service.”
Ohanesian is a freelance photojournalist based in Nairobi, Kenya. She has been reporting primarily in Africa since 2010 and has documented the civil war in South Sudan, the border demarcation between Sudan and South Sudan, the fighting in the Nuba Mountains of South Kordofan, and most recently the conflict in Darfur. Her photographs have been published by Al Jazeera, The Wall Street Journal, National Geographic, and TIME.
“At the end of the day it’s not about me; it’s about the lives of the people in the pictures,” Ohanesian said. “My photographs document what I’ve seen in isolated areas of the world. I hope the people I photograph feel that these photos communicate their circumstances to the outside world. It takes a massive amount of trust on the part of my subjects to know that I’m accurately representing them and their story.”
The Award jury, comprised of leading photo editors from The Associated Press, The New York Times, and VII Photo, gave Ohanesian the top prize for her “evocative images and tenacious dedication to documenting the effects of conflict on citizens in perilous regions.” They continued, “her perceptive, compassionate eye offers an extraordinarily personal glimpse into places the global community may not otherwise see.” The Anja Niedringhaus Award winner receives a $20,000 prize to support her ongoing work thanks to the support of the Howard G. Buffett Foundation.
Honorable mention London-based Lynsey Addario, who won a Pulitzer Prize in 2009 as part of a team at the New York Times and has covered the Syrian crisis for the past four years, was recognized by the jury for her portfolio of powerful images documenting humanitarian crises in Afghanistan, Iraq, Italy, the Philippines, South Sudan, Uganda, and Ukraine. Bangkok-based veteran Paula Bronstein, whose accolades include a World Press Photo award and Pulitzer nomination, was acknowledged with an honorable mention for her coverage of refugees, natural disasters, and political protests in Thailand, Afghanistan, Greece, Hong Kong, and Nepal.
This year’s Anja Niedringhaus Award event and reception will be hosted by German Ambassador to the U.S. Peter Wittig and Mrs. Huberta von Voss-Wittig at the German Embassy and residence. The event program will feature leading international journalists, including Ann Curry, Katty Kay, Ines Pohl, and Judy Woodruff.
For more information about the IWMF, follow us on social media (@IWMF on Twitter, @IWMFpage on Facebook, @TheIWMF on Instagram). Follow awardees on Instagram: Adriane Ohanesian @adrianeohanesian, Lynsey Addario @lynseyaddario, and Paula Bronstein @pbbphoto.
About the IWMF:
The IWMF is dedicated to strengthening the role of women journalists worldwide. The media is not truly free and representative without the equal voice of women. Since 1990, we have celebrated the courage of women journalists who overcome threats and oppression to report and bear witness to global issues. Through our programs and grants we empower women journalists with the training, opportunities, and support to become leaders in the news industry.