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Texas Intercollegiate Press Association honors University of Texas at Austin College of Communication alumni, leaders

Wanda Garner Cash and Karen Elliott House named to 2012 Hall of Fame

AUSTIN, Texas – April 5, 2012 – The Texas Intercollegiate Press Association (TIPA) inducted Wanda Garner Cash, associate director of the School of Journalism, and Karen Elliott House, member of the College of Communication advisory council, into its 2012 Hall of Fame. At the annual TIPA meeting in Corpus Christi, Texas, the two University of Texas at Austin College of Communication alumni were the only inductees.

"I was humbled and honored to receive this award and join the list of distinguished journalists, which now includes my friend and former classmate Karen Elliott House," said Cash. "Although Karen and I took different paths on our journalism careers, we share the same vision – that reporters make a difference."

Cash received a bachelor's degree in journalism from the College of Communication in 1971 and attended the College of Education, where she was certified as a secondary reading specialist in 1975.

Wanda Garner Cash
Wanda Garner Cash

At UT, Cash is the first Fellow of the S. Griffin Singer Professorship, and immediate past chairman of the executive committee of Texas Student Media. She teaches reporting at the undergraduate level and in the professional master's program at the School of Journalism. Most recently, she led the school's curriculum reform initiative, which will be implemented in the fall 2012 semester.

A community newspaper veteran with more than 25 years' experience, Cash previously was managing editor and publisher of The Baytown Sun, executive editor of The Brazosport (TX) Facts, assistant managing editor of The Galveston County Daily News and editor of the Kerrville (TX) Daily Times. Cash and her husband Richard also owned a weekly newspaper, The Ingram News, in rural Central Texas for eight years.

As past president of three journalism-based organizations: the Texas Press Association, the Freedom of Information Foundation of Texas (FOIFT) and Texas Associated Press Managing Editors, Cash has devoted her career to mentoring young journalists and advocating for open government and public access. That work included her leadership of a media coalition in 2005 to push for a Texas shield law.

Through other media affiliations, she has been a long-time open government advocate, testifying at the Legislature, organizing FOIFT education efforts, lobbying for public access and resisting attempts to limit the public's right to know. In 2004, Texas Supreme Court Chief Justice Tom Phillips named her to the Judicial Advisory Council's Committee on Public Access to Court Records.

As a past president of the FOIFT, Cash traveled to Mexico in 1998, meeting with newspaper editors to draft that country's first freedom of information laws. She remains on the FOIFT board where she is part of the Light of Day project, which aims to develop greater emphasis on open government reporting in journalism programs at Texas colleges and universities.

She is also on the national FOI Committee of the American Society of Newspaper Editors and was a delegate in an American Society of Newspaper Editors study mission to Cuba in October 2002.

House graduated in 1970 with a bachelor's degree in journalism from the College of Communication, where she was managing editor of the Daily Texan. House began her career as a reporter at The Dallas Morning News. In 1974, she joined the Wall Street Journal's Washington, D.C. bureau where she covered energy, environment and agriculture. She was named diplomatic correspondent in 1978, moved to New York in 1983 as assistant foreign editor and became foreign editor the following year.

In 1984, House received a Pulitzer Prize in international reporting for her coverage of the Middle East and has received several other awards throughout her career. In March of 1989, she was named vice president of Dow Jones' international group and became president in 1995.

House became publisher of the Journal in 2002, a position she held until her retirement in 2006. She was responsible for the business and editorial staffs of all Dow Jones overseas publications and services, international sales operations, overseas investments and publishing partnerships. She continues to have responsibility for oversight for Dow Jones of CNBC Europe and CNBC Asia Pacific, a business television partnership of Dow Jones and NBC Universal.

Karen Elliott House
Karen Elliott House

Since her retirement, House has traveled repeatedly and extensively in Saudi Arabia, working on a book titled “On Saudi Arabia: Its People, Past, Religion, Fault Lines – and Future.” The book will be published in September by Knopf. House is a trustee of the Rand Corporation and of the Trilateral Commission, and formerly served on the board of the Council on Foreign Relations and the Committee to Protect Journalists.

In addition to receiving a Pulitzer Prize, House was the recipient of the Overseas Press Club's Bob Considine Award for best daily newspaper interpretation of foreign affairs, Georgetown University's Edward Weintal Award for distinguished coverage of American foreign policy and the National Press Club's Edwin M. Hood Award for Excellence in Diplomatic Reporting.

She is an adjunct fellow at the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs at Harvard's John F. Kennedy School of Government and member of the College of Communication's advisory council.

                                      About the Texas Intercollegiate Press Association
With the original 1909 meeting at Baylor, the Texas Intercollegiate Press Association (TIPA) became the oldest collegiate press association in the nation and has grown into one of the largest and most respected collegiate groups in the country.

Contests have grown from three initial competitions to contests in general magazine, radio, television, online, two divisions of yearbook, literary magazine and six divisions of newspaper, plus more than 25 on-site contests during the annual convention.

About The University of Texas at Austin College of Communication
One of the nation's foremost institutions for the study of advertising and public relations, communication sciences and disorders, communication studies, journalism and radio-TV-film, The University of Texas at Austin College of Communication is preparing students to thrive in an era of media convergence. Serving more than 4,500 undergraduate and graduate students, the College is nationally recognized for its faculty members, research and student media. For more information about the College of Communication, visit


CONTACT: Laura Byerley, 512-471-2182

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