Moody College of Communication

The Dan Rather Medals for News and Guts

Awards honoring reporting as well as exceptional content

Do a good job and report the truth, and you're probably going to catch hell. The challenge is being willing to do it anyway.

— Dan Rather

Our Awards

The Dan Rather Medals for News and Guts honor the process of journalism as much as the end product. They will be awarded to professional and collegiate journalists who go the extra yard — overcoming obstacles like stonewalling and harassment — to get the story that tells truth to power.

The Medals are named for Dan Rather, the legendary reporter and anchor who went far afield from his Texan roots but never forgot his humble beginnings. He has been an ardent supporter of the School of Journalism and Media, inspiring and advocating for our majors. He is a permanent member of the Moody College of Communication’s Advisory Council, where he has been instrumental in its extraordinary development. The School and the College sponsor the Dan Rather Medals for News and Guts to further his goal of supporting and defending bravery and excellence in journalism in the face of overwhelming odds. While journalism and journalists have long been under constant fire from the powerful, recognizing those who show “News and Guts” has never been more important than it is today.

As Rather once said, "News organizations and teams within those organizations have to have the guts and the backbone to dig into stories that people in power don’t want the public to know.” These medals in his name, to be presented to professional and college journalists, honor that effort.

Winners announced for the 2023 awards.

Dan Rather Medals for Excellence in News and Guts


$5,000 Award

Student Media

$5,000 Award

Selected images from the photographic archives of Dirck Halstead, Matthew Naythons, Robert “Bob” McNeely, Dennis Brack and the Philip Scheffler Papers, Marion Goldin Papers and Rather (Dan) Papers at the Briscoe Center for American History.

Photos of Dan Rather and Richard Nixon and Dan Rather in Afghanistan from Getty Images.