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Friday, 8 December, 2000, 12:17 GMT
Top honour for Humphrys
John Humphrys
John Humphrys praised for "fearless tenacity"
Broadcaster John Humphrys, presenter of BBC Radio 4's flagship news programme Today, is to receive the 2001 Media Society Award for his contribution to the industry.

Humphrys is well-known for his no-nonsense questioning style and used his recent autobiography Devil's Advocate to attack "tame journalism".

The 57-year old, who became a father for the third time in June, was chosen by the 300 members of the society, drawn from senior press and broadcast journalists and media lawyers.

Humphrys said: "This is more of a tribute to the programme than to me personally.

"Today has always had more than its fair share of critics because it is such a popular programme and we do battle daily with leading figures in the land.

John Humphrys
Humphrys "does battle" daily on the airwaves

"This award is a nice reminder that a great many people approve of what we do."

Donald Trelford, president of the Media Society and former editor of The Observer, said the broadcaster was the clear winner after what he called "an exhaustive voting process by his peers".

He added: "The qualities on which we based the award were the fearless tenacity and effectiveness of his interviewing, based on solid research and an inquiring intelligence, which have succeeded over many years in illuminating complex areas of public policy."

Steve Mitchell, head of BBC radio news said: "In John we have something of a national treasure, though of course he would find such a description pompous beyond belief.

Humphrys' award will be presented at a dinner at the Savoy Hotel in London on 14 March next year.

See also:

22 Oct 00 | UK
Today programme goes online
02 Aug 00 | Wales
Humphrys rapped by BBC
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