McLEAN, Va. -- Dave Lougee, president of Gannett Broadcasting, was honored today by the Radio Television Digital News Association (RTDNA) with a First Amendment Leadership Award. The award is given annually by the Radio Television Digital News Foundation to a leader who has made significant contributions to the protection of the First Amendment and freedom of the press. The award will be presented on Wednesday, March 12 in Washington, DC.
"From his experience leading a newsroom to his current role overseeing Gannett's broadcast division, Dave has always been a strong leader and advocate for free speech. This award has been given to some of the most influential journalists of our time and shines a spotlight on the rights we hold dear. Dave, through his leadership, sets a terrific example for our broadcast journalists as they fight to protect First Amendment rights. I congratulate Dave on this important and well-deserved honor," said Gracia Martore, Gannett president and chief executive officer.
Lougee has been president of Gannett Broadcasting since 2007 and currently oversees 23 television stations across the country. Once Gannett's previously announced acquisition of Belo closes, Gannett's broadcast portfolio will nearly double, including stations to be serviced by Gannett through shared services or similar sharing arrangements.
Lougee started his broadcast career in Denver in 1981, ultimately serving as vice president/news director at Gannett's KUSA-TV in Denver from 1990-1996. He worked as vice president of news at WRC-TV in Washington, DC, for two years and news director at KING-TV in Seattle before being named president and general manager of Belo's TV and cable operations in Seattle/Tacoma in 2000. He was later promoted to executive vice president for media operations and in 2005, he was named a senior vice president of Belo.
Lougee serves on several industry boards. He is currently Vice Chair of the NBC Affiliates Board, and a member of the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) Board of Directors. He is also a member of the BMI (Broadcast Music Inc.) Board of Directors and immediate past Chair of the Television Bureau of Advertising (TVB) Board of Directors.
Among past First Amendment Leadership Award winners: USA TODAY founder Al Neuharth, ABC's Roone Arledge, CNN Founder Ted Turner, CBS "60 Minutes" creator Don Hewitt, Washington Post Publisher Katharine Graham and Fox News' Roger Ailes.