2021 International Press Freedom Awards

International Press Freedom Awards

On November 18, 2021, CPJ honored brave, courageous journalists from around the world at our 2021 International Press Freedom Award ceremony.

CPJ’s 2021 award winners:

Katsiaryna Barysevich

Katsiaryna Barysevich is a Belarusian journalist who spent months in prison on charges of “violating medical confidentiality with grave consequences” in connection with her reporting on large-scale protests.

Anastasia Mejía, Guatemala

Anastasia Mejía is a radio journalist in the central town of Joyabaj. She has repeatedly been harassed by local authorities, and arrested on charges of sedition and arson, in connection to her coverage of a protest against the local mayor.

Matías Guente, Mozambique

Matías Guente is executive editor of Canal de Moçambique, an independent weekly investigative newspaper. He has faced official harassment and intimidation in recent years, including an arson attack on Canal de Moçambique.

Aye Chan Naing, Myanmar

Aye Chan Naing is co-founder, chief editor, and executive director of the media group Democratic Voice of Burma, which came under renewed threat in February 2021, when the military seized power and imposed emergency rule.

Gwen Ifill Press Freedom Award Winner

CPJ’s Gwen Ifill Press Freedom Award is presented annually to an individual who has shown extraordinary and sustained achievement in the cause of press freedom.

Originally the Burton Benjamin Memorial Award, it was renamed in 2017 to honor Gwen Ifill, the veteran journalist and former CPJ board member who died in late 2016.

Jimmy Lai

Jimmy Lai has become a symbol of the struggle to maintain press freedom in Hong Kong as China’s Communist Party exerts ever greater control over the territory. In prison, denied bail, the outspoken critic of the Chinese government and advocate for democracy faces charges that could keep him in jail for life.