Boston Globe columnist Kevin Cullen wins Batten Medal for ‘inspiring storytelling’ from Amercian Society of News Editors

Boston Globe columnist Kevin Cullen has received the American Society of News Editors’ prestigious Batten Medal for his “inspiring story-telling” and commitment to ordinary people.

Cullen, who also won the award in 2008, is the only person to have won it twice, the society said Tuesday.

“In compact prose, Cullen tells powerful stories that move the heart and get results; he’s not just a chronicler of the human condition, he’s an advocate for those whose lives he touches,” the judges wrote in the award announcement.

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The award is given annually to a journalist who submits a portfolio of work, spanning a three-year period, that embodies the values of Jim Batten, a former reporter, editor, and chief executive officer of Knight Ridder, the society said. The winner receives $2,500.

“It’s humbling to win this, because Jim Batten was a gentleman and the award given in his name is all about sticking up for the little guy, the marginalized, and the powerless,” Cullen said. “Those are the kind of stories I like to tell most. It’s also humbling because I know the work of the other finalists, Lois Collins and Michael Phillips, and they are terrific, compassionate journalists.”

Globe editor-in-chief Brian McGrory, who was a finalist himself for the society’s Distinguished Writing Award for Commentary, congratulated Cullen and said he was grateful that the ASNE had recognized the exellence that Globe readers have observed for years in Cullen’s writing.

“Kevin can tell a story like few other people in newspapers today, but that’s only part of his talent,” McGrory said. “What makes him such a necessary read is the way he gives voice to those people in this city and in this region who wouldn’t otherwise have one. He’s not just a delightful columnist, but an important one.”

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