Medill fellowship pays tribute to John Callaway

June 23, 2010

John Callaway, one of Chicago's most respected and influential broadcast journalists of all time, will be memorialized in an online journalism fellowship at Northwestern University.

Establishment of the John Callaway Excellence in Online Journalism Fellowship at Northwestern's Medill School of Journalism was announced Wednesday by WTTW-Channel 11, the public television station Callaway served for more than three decades.

A towering figure in Chicago journalism for 48 years, Callaway died one year ago today -- which was exactly 10 years after he'd hosted his last broadcast of "Chicago Tonight," the nightly news program he created at Channel 11. He was 72. "John Callaway remains an iconic figure in the history of WTTW," said Dan Schmidt, president and CEO of Window to the World Communications. "I can't think of a better way to honor his memory than by making this opportunity available to talented young journalists."

Funded by donations from family, friends and Channel 11 viewers, the fellowship is open to graduate students at Medill. Each academic quarter, a fellow will work full-time with producers and web staff to create original and supplemental content for the "Chicago Tonight" website. Each participant will receive a $3,000 stipend. In a statement released Wednesday, Callaway's daughter, singer Ann Hampton Callaway, said:

"My sister Liz and I are thrilled that WTTW is honoring our father's legacy by creating this fellowship. He was a passionate mentor to budding journalists, and this would have pleased him immensely. He was also keenly interested in new ways of delivering stories to an audience."
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