President Leonel Fernandez recognized journalist Rafael Molina Morillo with the award of Journalist of the Year. Fernandez said this recognizes Molina’s 62 years in journalism, and his work in the defense of freedom of expression and Dominican democracy. The award comes with a RD$650,000 prize.
Speaking at the award ceremony, Education Minister Melanio Paredes described Molina Morillo as an icon of Dominican journalism who has contributed since his different positions to the strengthening of Dominican institutions and democracy.
Molina Morillo has been a media owner, and the editor of four media (Ahora, El Nacional, Listin, El Dia). He has been ambassador of the Dominican Republic to the US, and the United Nations. He is a former president of the Interamerican Press Association.
At present he is the editor of El Dia, a free daily.
Attending the event were the President and First Lady Margarita Cedeno, Minister of the Presidency Cesar Pina Toribio, press director Rafael Nunez and journalism colleagues.
In his acceptance speech of the award, Molina Morillo spoke of the ethics and principles that have guided his work since he began as a journalist at El Caribe in 1948.
He made the point the Fernandez government has respected the fundamental right to freedom of expression, but urged citizens to exercise this as a way to strengthen democracy. He stressed that the common good demands the greatest amount and variety of information as the full exercise of the right to expression.