May 21, 2024 The voice of all eras.

Meet the Three Filipinas Who Made It to 2024 Pulitzer Prizes

May 16, 2024

May 16, 2024

The most prestigious honor for journalists in the United States named the Filipino photographers and visual artist as 2024 Pulitzer Prize finalists

In today’s digital flood of information, where fake news spreads quickly, we must not understate the importance of rock-solid journalism. Fact-checking and quality storytelling aren’t just about keeping us informed; they’re about keeping it real and shaping a society that values truth.

Pulitzer Prizes spotlight storytellers who help us navigate the noise and understand the world. This year, three Filipinas are finalists in the 2024 Pulitzer Prizes. Their exceptional skills in journalism and visual arts showcase powerful narratives. The camera lenses and distinct perspectives broaden our insights and challenge us to view the world with empathy and awareness.

Get to Know the Filipina Finalists of the 2024 Pulitzer Prizes

The Pulitzer Prizes are prestigious awards for achievements in journalism, literature, drama, and music, started by the Hungarian-born American journalist Joseph Pulitzer. Since 1917, Columbia University in New York City has been handing out these awards every year.

Hannah Reyes Morales
Hannah Reyes Morales

The Pulitzer Prize named Hannah Reyes Morales, a Filipina photojournalist, a finalist. She captured a compelling photo series for the New York Times story on Africa’s “youthquake.” By 2050, Africa’s population will be one-quarter of the world’s population and one-third of its young people. Reyes Morales’s work will illuminate this phenomenon.

She first came into the spotlight when she was commissioned as the official photographer for the Nobel Peace Prize in 2021. Following this prestigious role, she continued to build her profile as a National Geographic explorer from 2022 to 2023.

Hannah Reyes Morales won the 2023 Picture of the Year International Award and World Press Photo Award. Her lens captures powerful stories, from global peace efforts to Africa’s demographic shifts. The awards highlight her unique ability to convey stories through her photography.

The Washington Post team, including journalists Claire Healy and Filipino-American Nicole Dungca, and Davao visual artist Ren Galeno, are Pulitzer Prize finalists.

Their story, Searching for Maura, was published in November and is now a finalist. It is the first-ever story written in Filipino at The Washington Post. The Pulitzer Prize recognizes exceptional journalism and visual arts achievements. As Pulitzer puts it:”

“For masterful and sensitive use of the comic form to reveal the story of a great injustice to a group of Filipinos exhibited at the 1904 World’s Fair in St. Louis, where some of them died.”

Nicole Dungca
Nicole Dungca

Nicole Dungca, a finalist team member, works with The Washington Post’s investigative unit. She co-hosts Broken Doors, a Pulitzer Prize-winning podcast. Dungca’s experience includes the Boston Globe’s Spotlight Team, The Oregonian, the Times-Picayune, and the Providence Journal.

She is the current president of the Asian American Journalists Association.

Renee Galeno
Renee Galeno

On the other hand, Renee Galeno, a visual artist from Davao, illustrated Searching for Maura after revisiting the 1904 St. Louis World’s Fair, where the United States displayed Igorote people from the Philippines in a “human zoo.”

Prior to her collaboration with Nicole and Claire, she had her artistic recognition expanded when an editor from The Washington Post discovered her comic “I pray you’re born with gills,” part of the Ten Years to Save the World project.

In 2023, she released the graphic novel Sa Wala (Nothing to Lose), which was published by Komiket Inc., with a German translation scheduled for release later this year. Currently, she is working on another graphic novel, Full of Grace, supported by a Philippine International Comics Festival Grant.

Following in the Footsteps of Filipino Pulitzer Prize Winners

Three Filipinas join notable Filipinos who have won or been finalists for the Pulitzer Prize. Notable Filipinos include photojournalists Ezra Acayan and Romeo Gacad, reporter Manuel Mogato, and general Carlos P. Romulo. The Pulitzer Prize recognizes exceptional journalism and visual arts achievements.

Their stories continue to reverberate, inspiring a new generation of storytellers to pursue truth and excellence in journalism, particularly in this digital age rife with fake news and historical revisionism.

Cover image credit: Hannah Reyes Morales, Nicole Dungca, and Ren Galeno

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