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Oct 21st
Home Sections Education & Technology Daughter of Massacred Journalist to Get Scholarship in Chicago
Daughter of Massacred Journalist to Get Scholarship in Chicago PDF Print E-mail
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Wednesday, 22 September 2010 16:31



(Journal Group Link International)


Daughter of Massacred Journalist Bong Reblando to Get Scholarship from the Chicago Journalists Association


C HICAGO (jGLi) – “I will do all of my best just to fulfill my dreams and follow my father’s footsteps.”


Julia Mae P. Reblando is only 14 years young but she clearly articulates the profundity of stepping into the big shoes of her father, Alejandro “Bong” M. Reblando, a staff member of the Manila Bulletin, a Philippine daily newspaper. Bong Reblando was one of the 30 journalists slain in line of duty in what became known as the Maguindanao Massacre, the biggest mass murder of journalists the world has ever known.


Julia Mae, a junior high-school student of Holy Trinity College in General Santos City in the Philippines, will be missing her class in the next two weeks to prepare for her travel to Chicago, Illinois, where she will receive a $1,000 scholarship award from Chicago Journalists Association (CJA), which will hold its 71st annual dinner at the Holiday Inn Chicago Mart Plaza, 350 N. Orleans, Friday evening, Oct. 1.


CJA President Allen Rafalson chose a non-American to receive the scholarship award for the first time this year. Mr. Rafalson said, “She (Julia Mae) has a burning desire to be a journalist this early.”


In her personal statement on the award, Julia Mae said, “I choose journalism not just because I want to follow my father’s footsteps but also because I want to show the people how much I really care of everybody most especially my fellow countrymen, the Filipinos.”


For her part, CJA Charitable Fund President Karen Petitte said, “For the first time in our history, we have extended this annual scholarship to a non-American to dramatize our organization’s sympathy and solidarity with journalists and their families who were victims of this shocking event.”

Julia Mae will be accompanied by her mother, Myrna P. Reblando, in her trip to Chicago, courtesy of the Philippine Airlines. The CJA sought the help of Joseph G. Lariosa of the Chicago-based NPC Phil.-U.S.A. in looking for prospective scholarship applicants from among families of massacred journalists.

She will join two Asian-American journalists, TV reporters Euna Lee and Laura Ling, who will receive the Daniel Pearl Awards. Misses Lee and Ling were arrested in March 2009 along the North Korea-Chinese border while investigating the trafficking of North Korean women. Both were sentenced to 12 years in a labor camp, but released in August of the same year after a visit to Pyongyang by former U.S. President Bill Clinton.


Twelve Chicago-area journalists are to receive Sarah Brown Boyden awards for their work in different categories. One of them will be recipient of the $1,000 "Best of Best" award.  Two other distinguished journalists will also be honored. They are: Chicago Reader columnist Ben Joravsky (Chicago Journalist of the Year) and former City News Bureau chief Paul Zimbrakos (Lifetime Achievement).


Joravsky is known for his outstanding political reporting, while Zimbrakos has had a great impact on journalists' careers during a period spanning a half-century.

Previous recipients of the prestigious Pearl award include: Liz Sly, Chicago Tribune; Wolf Blitzer, CNN; Michael Weisskoff, Time Magazine; Martha Raddatz, ABC Worldwide News; Jill Carroll, the Christian Science Monitor; Paul Salopek, Chicago Tribune; Alan Johnston,
BBC Worldwide; and Georgie Anne Geyer, Universal Press Syndicate.

In an unusual move, the CJA will be presenting a $1,000 scholarship to a student overseas this year. The person, who turned out to be Julia Mae, must be a member of one of the families whose parents were among 30 journalists massacred in Maguindanao province in the
Philippines on Nov. 23, 2009. It marks the first time the organization will be giving a scholarship to a high-school or college student outside the Chicago-area.

Dinner tickets are priced at $90 per person. The reception is from
5:00 p.m. to 6:30 p.m., followed by dinner. # # #


Editor’s Note: To contact the author, please e-mail him at:  (


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Last Updated on Wednesday, 22 September 2010 16:39

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