CNN to honour 10 ‘heroes’ for their work across news, business and sport

One-hour special to feature the channel’s 10 most important contributors to journalism and business of the 21st century

CNN honored 10 men and women from across the news spectrum for their contributions on the network, CNN Worldwide president Jeff Zucker announced on Thursday.

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CNN Worldwide is best known for its wide-ranging TV and digital news programming but also features documentaries, segments, branded entertainment and of course investigative journalism. CNN has won multiple major awards for its reporting, especially since Zucker took over as president in 2001. This year the channel has won the prestigious George Polk award for its coverage of the ongoing Manus Island, Nauru and Australian government affairs.

And CNN continues to grow, doubling its online audience in the US this year, and winning five of eight Emmy awards handed out by the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences.

“Each one of these individuals are true American innovators and heroes whose work led to breakthrough innovations in the field of journalism and the world of business,” Zucker said in a statement. “Our work is always informed by an ethic of neutrality, which is particularly important at a time when the world is ever more complex and ever more divided.”

In the special, CNN will profile the likes of CNBC anchor John Jannarone, nightlife expert Whitney Eve, former candidate for Kentucky governor Hal Heiner, photographer and activist Gloria Steinem, and school lunch crusader Michelle Obama.

Ten individuals will be honoured with the CNN Courage Awards, given by the network every year. The award is presented to individuals and teams from across CNN for their achievements on CNN. The recipient can be announced at a later date.

The special is being produced by CNN Films with special producer and CNN Films anchor Alex Blumberg. Production team includes executive producers Lisa Erspamer, Lori McCreary, Jeff Zucker, Ben Courtney, Meaghan Leavitt, Beth Keiser, Ilan Hall, Kevin Pennoyer, Mike Karnell, Corey Moosa, Keith Schulze, Gabrielle Stanton, Mike Pinckney, Yoni Liebling, Gretchen Hamel and Andrew Gabler.

The CNN Courage Awards and the CNN Courage Spotlights are presented by Coca-Cola. CNN is a division of Turner Broadcasting System, Inc., a Time Warner company.

• This article was amended on 1 January 2019. An earlier version referred to “glorified interns” for some of the CNN Courage Award recipients. Some of the winners were actually journalists and fact-checkers.

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