Post correspondent wins B’nai B’rith Diaspora Reportage Award

Reporter honored for series on Jewish communities displaced by Ukrainian civil war.

April 26, 2015 12:13
2 minute read.

Post reporter Sam Sokol reporting from the separatist stronghold on Donetsk last May.. (photo credit: Courtesy)


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Jerusalem Post correspondent Sam Sokol has won the B’nai B’rith Word Center’s annual award for excellence in Diaspora Reportage, the organization announced Sunday morning.

Sokol, who covers the Jewish World beat, won the award in the print media category for his ongoing series on Jewish communities displaced by the Ukrainian civil war. Just before Passover he returned from yet another trip to eastern Ukraine during which he met with Jews in the city of Mariupol, which is widely considered to be one of the separatists’ next targets should they renew their offensive.

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“This is a great honor and I am incredibly thankful,” said Sokol. “I hope that winning this award helps to raise awareness of the issues facing Ukrainian Jewry during this incredibly difficult time.”

Sam Sokol (right) chats with soldiers and residents in the eastern Ukrainian village of Chermalyk earlier this month.

In the broadcast media category, Channel 10 chief international correspondent Nadav Eyal took home the honors for his hour-long program Hate, broadcast on Channel 10 on October 7, 2014, which dealt with rising anti-Semitism in Europe and was filmed on location in Germany, England and Greece.

Instead of being awarded to an individual journalist, this year’s Lifetime Achievement Award is to go to radio station Kol Israel for its long running Searching for Relatives Bureau program, inaugurated in 1945 to help Holocaust survivors track down missing relatives.

In its current incarnation, the program has brought together hundreds of Jews across the globe, locating and reuniting with long-lost relatives, friends and neighbors.

“The winners of this year’s awards are examples of the best in Israeli-Diaspora reportage and represent dedication, professionalism and intellect by those who were chosen from among 25 excellent candidates for the award,” B’nai B’rith World Center director Alan Schneider said following the announcement of the winners. “Judging from the continued increase of applicants and entries for the award there seems to be profound interest in Diaspora Jewry and Israel-Diaspora relations among Israeli journalists that still deserves encouragement and recognition through this important awards project.”

The B’nai B’rith World Center Award for Journalism is named for the late Wolf Matsdorf and his wife Hilda. Wolf was an editor of the B’nai B’rith World Center Journal Leadership Briefing and a journalist in Israel and Australia.

Hilda was a pioneer in social work in both Australia and Israel. The Lifetime Achievement Award is named for Luis and Trudi Schydlowsky.

The Award is made possible through donations from Daniel Schydlowsky, a professor and a member of the B’nai B’rith World Center International Board of Governors (Lima, Peru and Washington DC), and the Matsdorf family.

B’nai B’rith International, with a presence in over 50 countries, has advocated for global Jewry and championed the cause of human rights since 1843.

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