Thank you to those of you who were able to make it to our annual Gala and Awards dinner last month!
It was a very special night at the Yale Club in New York City, where we honored journalists from around the world for their outstanding commitment to the craft and their abilities to cover the South Asian diaspora.
Our keynote speaker, Soledad O'Brien, gave a humbling speech about her biracial background and how her roots from a multicultural family strengthened her drive in the broadcast profession.
Our emcee for the evening was ESPN's Kevin Negandhi, who kept us laughing and energized throughout the night. He reminded all of the guests at the gala that we were South Asians pursuing our journalism careers, and that's a trait worth celebrating.
Among our talented group of award presenters was Dr. Prabhjot Singh, a professor at Columbia University and a practicing physician in Harlem, who was attacked by a group of young men in September. The N.Y.P.D are classifying Dr. Singh's attack as a hate crime. Last year, Dr. Singh wrote an op-ed in The New York Times about the city's methods for tracking hate crimes. After the attack, Dr. Singh was quick to focus the media attention on the community. At SAJA, he spoke about his hopes to create a neighborhood where young people do not have to turn to violence, or hate-driven acts, and instead, have a healthy understanding of various cultures and religions.
We were also fortunate to have Miss America 2014, Nina Davuluri present our award for "Outstanding Feature Story About South Asia, or the Worldwide South Asian Diaspora." Davuluri, who was the first South Asian-American crowned the Miss America title in September spoke about her year-long platform celebrating diversity and cultural competency. She also spoke about how her process to become the next Miss America was one that required breaking down walls and stereotypes within the South Asian community.
For more details on this year's Gala and Awards Dinner, please visit the SAJA's blog, SAJAForum, where we have exclusive Q&A's with some of our speakers and presenters, and created a social media wrap up of the evening!
To see the winners from this year's Gala and Awards Dinner click here: SAJA Awards page.
We would also like to thank our corporate sponsors for their help and support during our annual awards event:
Dow Jones/Wall Street Journal
Al Jazeera America
The New York Times
The New York Daily News
The New York Association of Black Journalists