Is This the List of Pulitzer Finalists?

By: Joe Strupp Less than a week before the Pulitzer Prizes are to be announced, a seemingly credible list of finalists obtained by Editor & Publisher suggests that the Los Angeles Times has the most entries in contention with six. A Pulitzer juror confirmed several of the finalists on the list among the 14 newspaper categories.

While there is no way to know for certain that this is, indeed, the actual list of finalists, a similar list obtained by E&P last year at this time proved correct in each category when the final awards were given. This year's winners will be announced Monday, April 7.

If the list obtained by E&P proves accurate, other apparent leaders among the finalists include the Chicago Tribune and The Washington Post, with four each, while The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times may have three each. (Last year, the Times dominated, taking home a record seven Pulitzers.) The Boston Globe's highly touted coverage of the Catholic church scandal, which sent shock waves through the denomination and had long been a favorite for a Pulitzer, is the paper's lone finalist, according to the list obtained by E&P.

Jurors who picked the finalists met March 3-5 in New York, choosing three in each category. The 19-member Pulitzer Board will meet this week for two days beginning Thursday to choose winners. Board members have the power to move finalists from one category to another -- and may also choose a winner from among entries that had not been named as finalists by jurors.

Dubbed by E&P last year as "the worst-kept secret in journalism," Pulitzer finalists are routinely leaked by some jurors, while others enjoy confirming names and compiling lists based on the leaks. These leaks occur despite a strict rule from Pulitzer Prize officials that finalists be kept confidential.

Here then are the possible finalists for the 2003 Pulitzer Prizes:

Public Service
1. The Boston Globe - Catholic priest sex scandal
2. The Detroit News - judicial system
3. Pensacola (Fla.) News Journal - land-buying corruption

1. Los Angeles Times - Honduran child
2. The Oregonian, Portland - cello player
3. The Plain Dealer, Cleveland - wrongfully accused man

Editorial Writing
1. The Wall Street Journal - ImClone/FDA
2. The Arizona Republic, Phoenix - immigration
3. Chicago Tribune - death penalty

1. The Washington Post - Colbert King
2. Richmond (Va.) Times-Dispatch - Mark Holmberg
3. The Providence (R.I.) Journal - Edward Achorn

Foreign News
1. The Washington Post - Mexico
2. The Wall Street Journal - Iraq sanctions
3. Chicago Tribune - U.S./European relations

Breaking News
1. The Sun, Baltimore - D.C. sniper case
2. The Seattle Times - D.C. sniper case
3. The Eagle-Tribune, Lawrence, Mass. - drowning of four boys

1. The Seattle Times - tracing terrorists based in Canada
2. Los Angeles Times - Harrier aircraft
3. The New York Times - warehousing the mentally ill

1. The Sun, Baltimore - criminal justice system
2. Milwaukee Journal Sentinel - mad cow disease
3. The Wall Street Journal - corporate greed

1. The Washington Post - immigration
2. Chicago Tribune - Arthur Andersen
3. The New York Times - corporate corruption

1. The Christian Science Monitor, Boston - Clay Bennett
2. Seattle Post-Intelligencer - David Horsey
3. The Sacramento (Calif.) Bee - Rex Babin

Beat reporting
1. The Washington Post - AOL
2. Chicago Tribune - Arthur Andersen
3. The New York Times - taxes

Photos - feature
1. Los Angeles Times - Honduran child
2. Los Angeles Times - Oklahoma blacks in California
3. The Hartford (Conn.) Courant - heroin

Photos - spot news
1. Los Angeles Times - Church of the Nativity/West Bank
2. Rocky Mountain News, Denver - Colorado fires
3. The Washington Times - D.C. sniper

1. San Francisco Chronicle
2. Los Angeles Times
3. Unknown


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