The Feddie Reporting Award

Gary Fields, John Emshwiller 2011

The Wall Street Journal

Gary Fields and John R. Emshwiller of the Wall Street Journal will receive the Feddie, given for work showing the impact of Washington rules and regulations outside the Beltway. In a series called, “Federal Offenses,” they showed how little-known laws can snare the unwary – such as the father and son who were arrested and fined for trying to find (but not finding) arrowheads on federal land.

Gary Fields is a criminal justice/law enforcement reporter based in The Wall Street Journal’s Washington, D.C., bureau. His supervisor is Matthew Rose.

Mr. Fields has been with the Journal since July 2000. Prior to this, he was a sports editor for the Natchitoches (La.) Times from 1981 to 1985. From 1985 to 1990, he worked for The Times of Shreveport, first as the Natchitoches, La., bureau chief, then as a police reporter. In 1990, he had a short stint with the Gannett News Service in Arlington, Va., before moving on to the Washington (D.C.) Times as a police reporter, where he remained until 1991. From 1991 to 2000, Mr. Fields worked at USA Today as a states desk editor, rewrite reporter and a criminal justice reporter.

During his career, Mr. Fields has won a number of awards. In 2007 he won the Thurgood Marshall Journalism Award for a story he did on a mentally ill death row inmate. In addition, he also won an Excellence in Criminal Justice reporting award from John Jay College for work he has done on the criminal justice system of American Indian tribes. The North Star Fund and Families Against Mandatory Minimums each honored him as well for his longtime coverage of those affected by sentencing and criminal justice policies. In 2006 Mr. Fields won the James Aronson Award for Social Justice Journalism for his series of stories that focused on the American prison system. In June 2005, Mr. Fields and Journal colleague Laurie Cohen won a Crystal Gavel Award from the New York Press Club for their series on inequities stemming from federal sentencing guidelines. He contributed articles that helped the Journal win the Pulitzer Prize in breaking news in 2002 for its coverage of the events of Sept. 11, 2001. In addition, Mr. Fields has been named journalist of the year by the National Association of Black Journalists.

Born in Kansas City, Mr. Fields received a bachelor’s degree from Northwestern State University in Natchitoches La., where he is a member of Purple Line, the alumni hall of fame. In addition, Mr. Fields is a member of both the National Association of Black Journalists and Criminal Justice Journalists. He also is a member of the Montgomery County Foster and Adoptive Parents Association. Mr. Fields currently resides in Washington with his wife, Helen Kathryn Fox, and their three children.

John R. Emshwiller, a senior national correspondent for the Wall Street Journal, has spent most of the past decade covering white-collar crime and related issues. He is the author of Scam Dogs & Mo-Mo Mamas. Together, Smith and Emshwiller shared the 2002 Gerald Loeb Award for their coverage of Enron.

Other Winners of this Award


NPF Award Winner: Christina Jewett

Christina Jewett

Kaiser Health News


NPF Award Winner: Christopher Flavelle

Christopher Flavelle

Bloomberg News


NPF Award Winner: Curtis Tate

Curtis Tate

McClatchy Newspapers


NPF Award Winner: Thomas Frank

Thomas Frank

USA Today


NPF Award Winner: Jack Kaskey

Jack Kaskey



NPF Award Winner: Mark Drajem

Mark Drajem



NPF Award Winner: Maureen Groppe

Maureen Groppe



Gary Fields, John Emshwiller

The Wall Street Journal


Peter Whoriskey

Washington Post