UK alumni honored at Creason Lecture


Cathy Black, a journalist for CBS and UK alum, speaks to the crowd

Shelby Helton

The School of Journalism and Media hosted the 40th annual Joe Creason Lecture on Tuesday night. The lecture began in 1977 to celebrate the life of dedicated Kentucky journalist Joe Creason.

Journalism professors Lars Willnat and Mike Farrell moderated the event, which included the lecture and several award presentations.

Lalie Dick of Plum Lick Publishing presented the David Dick “What a great story!” Storytelling Award on behalf of her late husband to journalism senior Derek Terry.

“Derek’s story is a must read for everyone at this age, young, rich, poor, old, sober or drugged, before it’s too late to outrun the dragons,” Dick said.

Next, Distinguished Alumni Awards were presented for the first time to six individuals. These awards went to alumni who graduated from UK and went on to have successful journalism careers.

The recipients of the award, with graduation year, are: Cathy A. Black, 1985; Judith G. Clabes, 1967; Walter Grant, 1967, accepting on behalf of his late brother William R. Grant, 1966; David V. Hawpe, 1965; Terry Hunt, 1967; Richard G. Wilson, 1966.

Hunt, a distinguished alumnus as well as the event’s lecturer, worked for the Kentucky Kernel in college and then spent most of his career as an Associated Press White House correspondent. He covered four presidents, from Ronald Reagan to George W. Bush. He traveled to more than 90 countries and all 50 states covering material from the collapse of the Soviet Empire, peacemaking attempts in the Middle East, and wartime trips to Iraq and Afghanistan. 

Hunt spoke about his experiences with his classmates and Kernel coworkers at UK, several of which were also awarded as distinguished alumni. Hunt said that all of his fondest memories were because of UK and the journalism department.

Hunt said that UK gave him the basis for his 46 years with the Associated Press.

“I was literally interviewed at the journalism building right here on campus. The AP came and talked to me and gave me a job right on the spot,” Hunt said. He said his career in journalism was started and sealed at UK.

Hunt’s final advice was to smile, be persistent, and cover stories that no one else wants to cover while getting bylines and earning a good reputation.