Special Awards and Citations

Finalists have been announced since 1980.


2010 Hank Williams

For his craftsmanship as a songwriter who expressed universal feelings with poignant simplicity and played a pivotal role in transforming country music into a major musical and cultural force in American life.

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2008 Bob Dylan

For his profound impact on popular music and American culture, marked by lyrical compositions of extraordinary poetic power.

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2007 John Coltrane

A posthumous special citation to the composer for his masterful improvisation, supreme musicianship and iconic centrality to the history of jazz.

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2007 Ray Bradbury

A special citation to Ray Bradbury for his distinguished, prolific and deeply influential career as an unmatched author of science fiction and fantasy.

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2006 Edmund S. Morgan

For a creative and deeply influential body of work as an American historian that spans the last half century.

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2006 Thelonious Monk

A posthumous Special Citation to the American composer for a body of distinguished and innovative musical composition that has had a significant and enduring impact on the evolution of jazz.

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1999 Duke Ellington

Bestowed posthumously, commemorating the centennial year of his birth, in recognition of his musical genius, which evoked aesthetically the principles of democracy through the medium of jazz and thus made an indelible contribution to art and culture.

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1998 George Gershwin

Awarded posthumously, commemorating the centennial year of his birth, for his distinguished and enduring contributions to American music.

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1996 Herb Caen, local columnist of the San Francisco Chronicle

For his extraordinary and continuing contribution as a voice and conscience of his city.

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1992 Art Spiegelman

For "Maus".

1987 Joseph Pulitzer Jr.

For his extraordinary services to American journalism and letters during his 31 years as chairman of the Pulitzer Prize Board and for his accomplishments as an editor and publisher.

1985 William Schuman

For more than half a century of contribution to American music as composer and educational leader.

1984 Theodor Seuss Geisel, more widely known as Dr. Seuss

For his special contribution over nearly half a century to the education and enjoyment of America's children and their parents.

1982 Milton Babbitt

For his life's work as a distinguished and seminal American composer.

1978 Richard Lee Strout

For distinguished commentary from Washington over many years as staff correspondent for The Christian Science Monitor and contributor to The New Republic.

1978 E.B. White

For his letters, essays and the full body of his work.

1977 Alex Haley

A special award for Roots, the story of a black family from its origins in Africa through seven generations to the present day in America.

1976 Professor John Hohenberg

A special citation and an antique plaque inscribed by all the members of the Advisory Board, expressing appreciation for his services for 22 years as Administrator of the Pulitzer Prizes and for his achievements as teacher and journalist.

1976 Scott Joplin

Bestowed posthumously in this Bicentennial Year, for his contributions to American music.

1974 Roger Sessions

For his life's work as a distinguished American composer.

1973 George Washington, Vols. I-IV, by James Thomas Flexner

A special citation.

1964 Gannett Newspapers

A special citation for their program, "The Road To Integration," a distinguished example of the use of a newspaper group's resources to complement the work of its individual newspapers.

1961 American Heritage Picture History of the Civil War

A distinguished example of American book publishing.

1960 The Armada by Garrett Mattingly, published by Houghton Mifflin

It is a first class history and a literary work of high order.

1958 Walter Lippman, nationally syndicated columnist of The New York Herald Tribune

For the wisdom, perception and high sense of responsibility with which he has commented for many years on national and international affairs.

1957 Kenneth Roberts

For his historical novels which have long contributed to the creation of greater interest in our early American history.

1953 The New York Times

For the section of its Sunday newspaper edited by Lester Markel and headed, "Review of the Week," which for seventeen years has brought enlightenment and intelligent commentary to its readers.

1952 Max Kase of New York Journal-American

For his exclusive exposures of bribery and other forms of corruption in the popular American sport of basketball, which exposures tended to restore confidence in the game's integrity.

1952 Kansas City Star, MO

For the news coverage of the great regional flood of 1951 in Kansas and Northwestern Missouri-a distinguished example of editing and reporting that also gave the advance information that achieved the maximum of public protection.

1951 Cyrus L. Sulzberger of The New York Times

For his exclusive interview with Archbishop Stepinac.

1951 Arthur Krock of The New York Times

The Advisory Board on the Pulitzer Prizes as a policy does not make any award to an individual member of the Board. In 1951, the Board decided that the outstanding instance of National Reporting done in 1950 was the exclusive interview with President Truman obtained by Arthur Krock of The New York Times, while Mr. Krock was a Board member. The Board therefore made no award in the National Reporting category.

1948 Dr. Frank Diehl Fackenthal

A scroll indicating appreciation of Dr. Fackenthal's interest and service during the past years.

1947 Columbia University and the Graduate School of Journalism

For their efforts to maintain and advance the high standards governing the Pulitzer Prize awards (Pulitzer centennial year).

1947 The St. Louis Post-Dispatch

For its unswerving adherence to the public and professional ideals of its founder and its constructive leadership in the field of American journalism.

1945 Cartographers of the American press

For maps of the war fronts that have helped notably to clarify and increase public information on the progress of the Armies and Navies engaged.

1944 Byron Price, Director of the Office of Censorship

For the creation and administration of the newspaper and radio codes.

At the same time, the members of the Advisory Board of the Graduate School of Journalism deplore certain acts and policies of Army and Navy censorship in the handling of news at the source, and for the unreasonable suppression of information to which the American people are entitled.

1944 Mrs. William Allen White

A scroll indicating appreciation of Mr. White interest and services during the past seven years as a member of the Advisory Board of the Graduate School of Journalism, Columbia University.

1944 Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II

A special award for Oklahoma.

1941 The New York Times

For the public educational value of its foreign news report, exemplified by its scope, by excellence of writing and presentation and supplementary background information, illustration, and interpretation.

1938 Edmonton Journal, Alberta

A special bronze plaque for its editorial leadership in defense of the freedom of the press in the province of Alberta, Canada.

1930 William O. Dapping of The Auburn Citizen, NY

A special prize for his reportorial work in connection with the outbreak at Auburn prison during December, 1929.