Fred Sweets and Sheila Banks

Fred Sweets / Sheila Banks

The National Association of Black Journalists recently honored two of St. Louis’ own with the organization’s recent Salute to Excellence awards. 

Sheila Banks, a St. Louis native, won the 2020 National Association of Black Journalists Salute to Excellence Award in General Reporting – Magazines under 1 million, for her article “Justice for Danye” in the NAACP’s Crisis magazine. 

“Thank you, Crisis Magazine, for trusting me with such an important story and allowing me to help continue W.E.B DuBois’s 110-year legacy of speaking truth to power,” Banks said.

Banks is an author, writer and producer. She has worked as a host for BET; an anchor for KSDK-TV; an anchor/reporter at KTVI, now Fox2; director of public relations for Harris-Stowe State University and director of communications and special events for the City of St. Louis.

Fred Sweets, a contributing editor to The St. Louis American, was inducted into the NABJ Hall of Fame at the virtual ceremony held Dec.19.

Sweets is the son of the late N.A. and Melba Sweets, the long-time publisher and editor, respectively, of the American. He has worked as a staff photographer for the American and The St. Louis Post-Dispatch in addition to serving as photo editor at the Los Angeles Times and director of photography for The Associated Press. 

In 1999, on behalf of a team of photographers and editors, Sweets accepted the Pulitzer Prize for feature photography for a collection of photographs of key players and events stemming from President Bill Clinton's affair with Monica Lewinsky and the ensuing impeachment hearings.

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