FOI Oklahoma seeks nominations for First Amendment, freedom of information awards for 2012
Nominations are open for FOI Oklahoma’s awards recognizing individuals and organizations that promoted the First Amendment and the free flow of information to the public in 2012.
FOI Oklahoma also recognizes those who opposed dissemination of public information with its Black Hole Award.
The Ben Blackstock Award is presented to a non-governmental person or organization that has shown a commitment to freedom of information. The Sunshine Award goes to a public official or governmental body that has shown a commitment to open meetings and open records.
FOI Oklahoma also recognizes an Oklahoman who has promoted education about or protection of the individual rights guaranteed by the First Amendment with its Marian Opala First Amendment Award. The award is named for the late Oklahoma Supreme Court justice, a Polish immigrant who exemplified a belief in First Amendment rights.
All four awards will be presented during the Sunshine Week conference March 9. The local conference is in conjunction with national Sunshine Week, March 10-16.
The deadline for nominations for all four awards is Feb. 21.
Nominations must include a letter of no more than 250 words justifying why the person or organization is deserving of the award.
Nominations may be made via e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org or mailed to FOI Awards, PO Box 5315, Edmond, OK 73083-5315.
The 2011 winner of the Opala Award was Anthony Shadid, the Oklahoma City native and New York Times reporter who died in Syria.
The Blackstock Award was presented to Nicholas Harrison, a University of Oklahoma law school graduate.
Bradon Clabes, police chief of Midwest City, was recipient of the Sunshine Award.
The Black Hole Award went to Edmond City Manager Larry Stevens and the Edmond Police Department.
FOI Oklahoma is a statewide not-for-profit founded in 1990 to educate the public on the First Amendment and openness in government.