The Crusader Newspaper Group

Crusader publisher among six inductees in IJHF

Photo caption: (Clockwise from top left) Linda Graham Caleca, Ida Husted Harper, Dorothy R. Leavell, Steve Inskeep, Mike Lopresti, Jim Shella

The Indiana Journalism Hall of Fame will celebrate six new inductees in ceremonies April 29 at Woodland Country Club in Carmel, Indiana.

The new members include veteran newspaper reporters and writers, broadcasters and innovators who shaped news for readers and viewers in Indiana and around the world. They join more than 200 members inducted into the Indiana Journalism Hall of Fame since its founding in 1966.

“Once again, an incoming IJHF class reaffirms the Hoosier state’s status as a rich constellation of accomplished news media professionals,” said Stephanie Salter, IJHF board president. “The selection process is never easy, but the end product is always stellar.”

The board solicits nominations through October, then makes decisions on new inductees in November.

“With the previously annual induction ceremony paused from May 2019 to April 2022, the IJHF board had several dozen nominations to review,” said Larry Taylor IJHF executive director. “At the November meeting, the board selected six outstanding journalists for induction, the largest group since the 20th anniversary celebration in 1985.”

Here is the IJHF Class of 2023:

Linda Graham Caleca

Linda Graham Caleca was an editor at United Press International in Chicago when she was hired to edit Star Magazine at the Indianapolis Star in 1985. She soon moved to the newsroom, where for the next 15 years, she was a reporter, editor and writing coach, winning numerous awards. She was editor of The Star’s 1990 Pulitzer-Prize winning series about medical malpractice, reported on problems at Central State Hospital and reported on the Pan-Am Games, which included an interview with Fidel Castro.

Ida Husted Harper (1851-1931)

From her beginnings as a journalist at her Muncie High School newspaper, Ida Husted Harper used her talents to write for newspapers and magazines, to author books and to propel the 19th Amendment securing women’s right to vote. After reporting, writing and editing for Indiana news organizations and national magazines, often writing about women’s right to vote, she was named head of the National American Woman Suffrage Association press bureau, responsible for writing editorials published in newspapers across the country.

In 1919, when the 19th Amendment was signed into law, Ida Husted Harper was in attendance with other suffragists.

Steve Inskeep

Indiana native Steve Inskeep is host of NPR’s Morning Edition, as well as NPR’s morning news podcast Up First. He was hired by NPR in 1996, covering politics and wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. In 2003, he received a National Headliner Award for investigating a military raid and twice has been part of NPR News teams awarded the Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Silver Baton.

He was named host of Morning Edition in 2004, and he has taken listeners along with him to cover issues around the world. He is author of several books, including Imperfect Union: How Jessie and John Fremont Mapped the West, Invented Celebrity, and Helped Cause the Civil War.

Dorothy Leavell

When her husband died in 1968, Dorothy Leavell took over as owner and publisher of both the Chicago and Gary Crusader newspapers. She assumed editorial leadership of both papers that had been beacons to Chicago-area and northwest Indiana Black communities for three decades. She never shied from taking on controversial issues, her nominators say.

She was elected president of the National Newspaper Publishers Association several times and served as chairman of the NNPA Foundation for several years. She has won numerous awards, including NNPA Publisher of the Year and the Mary McLeod Bethune Award.

Mike Lopresti

Mike Lopresti spent 11 years at his hometown newspaper, the Richmond Palladium-Item, before joining USA Today as a sportswriter, a post he held for 31 years. He covered all manner of sports, from Olympics to basketball, football and the usual fare of professional and collegiate events. But his nominators stress his ability to research and study venues, players, coaches and other elements that gave his stories depth and context many other sports writers did not provide. Retired from USA Today, Lopresti writes a column for the Indianapolis Business Journal.

Jim Shella

Jim Shella reported daily for 34-years on Indianapolis WISH-TV, specializing in political coverage both national and local. He also hosted WFYI’s Indiana Week in Review for 25 years, where he led panelists who analyzed politics during the half-hour show. Among the events Shella covered were 14 national political conventions, state and local elections, all sessions of the Indiana Legislature and – as needed – he headed to the scene to report on breaking news.

He retired from WISH-TV in 2016, right after election season, but he continues to write a column for the Indianapolis Business Journal on politics and government.

The 56th annual induction ceremony, which includes lunch and a program featuring each inductee, is open to the public. Tickets are $60 each ($30 is tax deductible) and tickets for children 12 or under are  $30. Tables of eight are available for $480.

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