CNN Executive Chris Cramer to be honored in New York for promoting journalists' physical and emotional safety

NEW YORK -- Chris Cramer, president of CNN International Networks, will receive the Distinguished Media Leader award of the Dart Center for Journalism and Trauma in New York City on April 2nd.

The Dart Center, a resource on traumatic injury for journalists worldwide, will honor the news executive for his unceasing leadership in moving CNN and the news industry toward greater attention to safety training and support for journalists who suffer traumatic stress, Executive Director Roger Simpson said.


Cramer has urged the news industry to increase both safety training and attention to the risk of traumatic or emotional injury to journalists. Frank Ochberg, M.D., chairman of the Dart Center, praised Cramer for his unyielding attention to that message. "Because Chris is candid, explicit and personal in confronting the emotional impact of covering trauma, he has become the leading spokesperson for corporate responsibility in addressing emotional injury to media professionals," Ochberg said. "He is a friend of the Dart Center, and we are proud of that and proud of him," he added.


Cramer will receive the award in a free public program at 6:30 p.m., April 2nd in the McGraw-Hill Auditorium, 1221 Avenue of the Americas, in New York City. Cramer also will participate in a panel discussion, "Journalists at Risk," that also will feature Deborah Amos, ABC correspondent; Rick Davis, former NBC correspondent; Stephen Evans, BBC North American correspondent; John Hockenberry, NBC correspondent; Susan Meiselas, Magnum photojournalist; Peter Pringle, author, and Jonathan Shay, M.D., a psychiatrist who specializes in the traumatic experience of Vietnam veterans.


The program is co-sponsored by the Dart Center in Seattle and London and the New York-based Center for Communication, Inc.


Cramer is honorary president of the International News Safety Institute (INSI), a coalition of individuals and organizations dedicated to the safety of journalists. Cramer also is honorary chairman of Newscoverage Unlimited, an organization that promotes the recognition and treatment of traumatic stress among journalists.


At INSI's formation, Cramer warned of the growing dangers journalists face as they cover wars. "These are nightmarish times for those working in the news media," he wrote in The Guardian, "and the past year has been one of the most testing the profession has ever endured. Journalists are being killed at an unacceptable and unprecedented rate."


In the book Hostage, Cramer wrote an account of the 1980 Iranian Embassy siege where he was held prisoner.


Cramer joined CNN in 1996 after 25 years of service at the British Broadcasting Corp. (BBC), where he moved from regional reporter to Head of Newsgathering. In 1995, he insisted that the global news service introduce compulsory hostile environment training.


At CNN, Cramer is responsible for the CNN News Group's rapidly expanding news networks and Web sites outside the United States. He was responsible for the creation of six separately scheduled English language international channels that serve Europe/Middle East/Africa, Asia Pacific, South Asia, Latin America, North America, and the U.S.


He is based in CNN world headquarters in Atlanta and is a member of the CNN Executive Committee. He is a fellow of the Royal Television Society, a member of the British Association of Film and Television Arts and a member of the Board of Councillors for the Jimmy Carter Center in Atlanta.