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Tribune’s Mary Schmich Wins Pulitzer For Commentary

File Photo Of Chicago Tribune Tower (Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images)

File Photo Of Chicago Tribune Tower (Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images)

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CHICAGO (CBS) — Chicago Tribune columnist Mary Schmich is the proud winner of a Pulitzer Prize for commentary.

The judges recognized Schmich for what they call her “wide range of down-to-earth columns reflecting the character and culture from Chicago.”

The Savanna, Ga., native has been writing for the Tribune since 1985, and has been penning her column since 1992, except for a year’s sabbatical to attend Harvard University on a Nieman fellowship for journalists.
She also wrote the dialogue for the comic strip “Brenda Starr” from 1985 until it was canceled in 2011.

Tribune reporters Gary Marx and David Jackson were nominated as Pulitzer finalists in investigative reporting, for their “Fugitives from Justice” series.

But Matt Apuzzo, Adam Goldman, Eileen Sullivan and Chris Hawley of the Associated Press ended up taking home the Pulitzer for investigative reporting, for its coverage of the New York Police Department’s spying on Muslims.

The Seattle Times’ Michael J. Berens and Ken Armstrong also won for investigative reporting, for their probe of how a Washington state government body moved vulnerable patients from a safer pain medication to methadone.

The Philadelphia Inquirer won the award for public service, for its investigation of violence in city schools.

The Harrisburg, Pa., Patriot-News and reporter Sara Ganim won the Pulitzer for local reporting, for its coverage of the Jerry Sandusky sex scandal, and the subsequent firing of late football coach Joe Paterno, at Penn State.

The New York Times won two Pulitzers. David Kocieniewski won for explanatory reporting, for his series revealing how corporations and wealthy individuals often avoid taxes through loopholes. Jeffrey Gettleman won for international reporting, for his coverage of famine in East Africa.

The Huffington Post won its first ever Pulitzer, for national reporting. Senior military correspondent David Wood won the prize for his coverage of the physical and emotional hardships facing wounded American soldiers over the past decade of war.

The Seattle alternative weekly the Stranger also took home a prize, for reporter Eli Sanders’ story of a woman who survived an attack that killed her partner. The judges say Sanders created a compelling narrative from details of the crime, and from the woman’s testimony in court.

Boston Globe film critic Wesley Morris won for criticism, for his “easy traverse between the art-house and the big-screen box office.” Matt Wuerker of Politco won for his editorial cartoons.

Massoud Hossaini of Agence France-Presse won for breaking news photography, for his picture of a girl crying in fear after a suicide bomb attack in Kabul. Craig F. Walker of the Denver Post won for feature photography, for his pictorial chronicle of an Iraq War veteran suffering from post-traumatic stress.

In the categories outside of journalism, author Quiara Alegría Hudes won for drama, for her play “Water by the Spoonful,” about an Iraq War veteran’s travails working at a Philadelphia sandwich shop and trying to find meaning.

Professor Manning Marable, who died last year, won posthumously for history for his volume, Malcolm X: A Life of Reinvention. John Lewis Gaddis won for biography for his book George F. Kennan: An American Life, which documented the life of a diplomat who was caught between the Cold War and the rise of America as the world’s superpower.

Tracy K. Smith won for poetry for Life on Mars, a collection of poems that the judges say succeed in “taking readers into the universe and moving them to an authentic mix of joy and pain.”

Kevin Puts won the prize for music for his opera, “Silent Night: Opera in Two Acts,” the true story of a spontaneous cease fire among the Scottish, French and Germans during World War II, first performed by the Minnesota Opera on Nov. 12.

The Pulitzer Prize has been presented annually by Columbia University since 1917.