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2016 MJEA Friend of Scholastic Journalism

Missouri Representative Elijah Haahr receives the Friend of Scholastic Journalism Award from MJEA President Mitch Eden April 13 in Jefferson City.

Missouri Representative Elijah Haahr receives the Friend of Scholastic Journalism Award from MJEA President Mitch Eden April 13 in Jefferson City.

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Rep. Elijah Haahr has been named the 2015-2016 Missouri Journalism Education Association’s Friend of Scholastic Journalism winner.

This award is given to a professional journalist, professional media outlet or other individual or group making a significant contribution to scholastic journalism.

Earlier this year, Rep. Haahr introduction the Walter Cronkite New Voices Act, which seeks to provide Missouri’s student journalists with the same freedoms as professional journalists. So far, the bill has made it out of the Emerging Issues Committee and the Rules Committee, and will likely head to the floor of the House in mid-March.

Rep. Haahr was nominated by Matthew Schott from Francis Howell Central High School. In his nomination letter, Schott said, “I’m hard-pressed to think of any thing that anyone could do as a Friend of Scholastic Journalism that would be more impactful for scholastic journalists in Missouri. Not only would this bill give rights that every non-high school student has, but it would allow student journalists to go forward covering stories without any fear of retribution or censorship. The ripple effects from Mr. Haahr’s efforts will truly be never ending.”

Rep. Haahr, a Republican, represents south central Springfield (District 134) in the Missouri House of Representatives. He was elected to his first term in November of 2012. In addition to his legislative duties, he is an attorney with Aaron Sachs and Associates and focuses his practice on workers’ compensation and civil litigation. He is licensed to practice in Missouri and Oklahoma.

The MJEA judge noted, “Rep. Elijah Haahr is most deserving for introducing the New Voices Act and for his more general support of student free expression. It is encouraging to see support for students actually practicing their rights in such a bipartisan way. This is as it should be, of course.”

The Missouri Journalism Education Association is the largest state scholastic journalism organization formed to help protect and enhance scholastic journalism in Missouri. MJEA works to provide outreach and support to advisers and journalism programs across the state. MJEA supports free and responsible scholastic journalism by providing resources and educational opportunities, by promoting professionalism, by encouraging and rewarding student excellence and teacher achievement, and by fostering an atmosphere which encompasses diversity yet builds unity.

Download the official press release here

The official site of the Missouri Journalism Education Association - an affiliate of JEA
2016 MJEA Friend of Scholastic Journalism