Advisory Committee - Anja Niedringhaus Courage in Photojournalism Award


Muhammed Muheisen is an Associated Press chief photographer. He joined the AP in 2001, covering major events in the Middle East, Asia, Europe and Africa. For the last four years, he has been based in Islamabad, working as the AP’s Chief Photographer for Pakistan.

His work has received many international awards, including two Breaking News Pulitzer Prizes in 2005 and 2013 for covering the war in Iraq and Syria respectively, POYI’s 2007 Picture of the Year, and most recently the 2014 Oliver S. Gramling Award for journalism. He was named TIME Magazine’s Best Wire Photographer of 2013.


Michelle Blythe is the former Senior Photo Editor for Agence France Presse, Hong Kong Bureau. She first met Anja Niedringhaus while editing her pictures on assignment at the 1992 Barcelona Olympics. The two became life-long friends after sharing a room for the three-week duration of the games, as the other thirty-eight (male) team members were assigned single rooms.


Kathy Gannon serves as special regional correspondent for Pakistan and Afghanistan for The Associated Press. She has covered the region for the AP as a correspondent and bureau chief since 1988. In April 2014, Gannon was seriously wounded while covering preparations for Afghan national elections when an Afghan police officer opened fire on the car in which she was riding. Her colleague and close friend Anja Niedringhaus was killed in the attack. She is the recipient of numerous awards, including the Overseas Press Club Honorable Mention for international best newspaper or wire service reporting and the AP’s Oliver S. Gramling Award in Journalism. She was the Council on Foreign Relations’ Edward R. Murrow Fellow, and was honored with the 2002 IWMF Courage In Journalism Award. Gannon is also the author of “I is for Infidel: From Holy War, to Holy Terror, 18 Years Inside Afghanistan,” an examination of the Taliban and post-Taliban period. The book was published in 2005 by Public Affairs.


Heide Ute Niedringhaus is Anja Niedringhaus’ mother. She was born in Germany and had three daughters, Elke, Anja and Gide. “We have been always very close as a family, which was extremely important for Anja,” she says about her daughter. Niedringhaus is a retired teacher who worked in Holzminden, Germany for 32 years. Niedringhaus, or “Mutti” as Anja used to call her, is proud of Anja’s photography, saying that Anja’s pictures were always able to show the humanity of the subject beautifully, simultaneously displaying humanity’s cruelty.


Elke Niedringhaus-Haasper is the eldest sister of Anja Niedringhaus. She is currently working as an arts and culture journalist for a German newspaper. Niedringhaus-Haasper says that Anja had generosity unlike any other. “Anja looked at her family with the same humor, compassion and bravery that characterized her pictures,” she says about her sister.


Jutta Steinhoff is Anja Niedringhaus’ best friend. They met in 1986 at the University of Göttingen, where both started their studies in German Language and Literature, and journalism. They both worked at the regional newspaper Göttinger Tageblatt for a few years before respectively joining the news agencies DPA and EPA (European Pressphoto Agency) in Frankfurt. In the last three decades, they travelled together extensively to South America, Morocco, Greece, Spain, Bosnia, and the United States among other places. They were flatmates in Göttingen and Frankfurt, and they shared a passion for riding Triumph motorcycles. Steinhoff is currently Deputy Editor-in-Chief of the leading German press agency DPA (Deutsche Presse-Agentur). She has more than 20 years of experience in news-service writing and as DPA bureau chief in different German regions.


Gide Niedringhaus is Anja’s younger sister. The two grew up almost as if they were twins and have lived together for the most part of their lives. The home they shared together in Kaufungen has been Anja’s retreat in Germany. Living together with Gide and her family in the countryside gave Anja recourse and a welcome balance to her professional life. Gide works as a teacher at an elementary school in Niestetal near Kassel, Germany.