Star Tribune reporter Libor Jany, who leads the newspaper's coverage of policing in Minneapolis, has been named the 2021 Journalist of the Year by the National Association of Black Journalists.
It's the latest honor for Jany, who covers the Minneapolis Police Department. His coverage of George Floyd's killing while in police custody in 2020 — and the widespread unrest, racial reckoning and impact on policing that followed — was integral to the Star Tribune's 2021 Pulitzer Prize for Breaking News.
Jany will be recognized with other award winners and hall of fame inductees at a virtual ceremony Dec. 4. As the latest Journalist of the Year, he joins a list of luminaries including last year's winner, Yamiche Alcindor, White House Correspondent for PBS NewsHour, along with sports journalist Jemele Hill, NBC News anchor Lester Holt and New York Times Executive Editor Dean Baquet, among others dating to 1979.
"Libor is celebrated among the journalism and NABJ communities for his ability to uncover some of the most important stories of our time through his attention to detail, matchless work ethic and skilled approach to building trust with his sources and audiences," said NABJ President Dorothy Tucker. "Because of his work, stories that have an urgency to be told — like his breaking news reporting on the murder of George Floyd and subsequent protests and riots — have now helped to change America." Earlier this year, Jany was named Journalist of the Year by the Minnesota Society of Professional Journalists.
Jany, 36, is a native of St. Paul. He is a graduate of Highland Park High School and Mississippi State University. He joined the Star Tribune in 2013 after working in newsrooms in Connecticut, New Jersey, California and Mississippi. He took over coverage of the Police Department in 2014 and has written more than 1,400 articles for the Star Tribune. His work includes coverage of how the Third Precinct where Floyd was killed was a "playground" for renegade officers and fostered a culture of bad behavior, and a richly reported profile of outreach workers at the front line of the fight against opioids.
"In his years on this beat, and particularly in the past few years, Libor's beat coverage — from breaking news to deeply reported investigations — has been stellar, his work ethic unparalleled and his commitment to this community unflinching," said Star Tribune Senior Managing Editor Suki Dardarian. "Beyond that, he operates with integrity, professionalism and humility."
NABJ was founded in 1975, and its 4,000 members represent various news platforms across the country.
Abby Simons • 612-673-4921