Sheila Nevins, who stepped down as president of HBO Documentary Films earlier this year, accepted the Fred Dressler Leadership Award at the Mirror Awards, which recognizes excellence in media industry reporting. In her speech she said she planned to “talk about ageism and then we’ll get out of here.” (She ended by hilariously giving out her phone number and thanking the crowd for “the support.”)
“I am at the moment retired and I thought that would be a good thing,” she said. “Except then I looked it up, and it said — among other things, like gardening and cooking, none of which I know how to do — it also said that I would be able to do all the things that I was never able to do,” Nevins said. “Well, I’ve been able through work to do all the things I ever really want to do. Not wanted, but want. And so I will say that the word retirement should be replaced and ageism should be a new frontier for us. Come on, we can think. Maybe I don’t know your name, but I know what you’re about. Anyway, my number is…”
Awards for Best Profile went to Lois Parshley of Pacific Standard; Best Single Article/Story went to The New York Times’ Jim Rutenberg (“I picked the wrong day to start day drinking,” he quipped while accepting the award); Best Commentary went to Politico’s Jack Shafer and Tucker Doherty for “The Media Bubble Is Worse Than You Think,” and Best In-Depth/Enterprise Reporting was shared by The New Yorker’s Ronan Farrow and a team of New York Times reporters for the two outlets’ explosive reporting on Harvey Weinstein.
In keeping with the big themes of the past year, two new categories were created: Best Story on Fake News, which went to Amanda Robb for her stories in Rolling Stone and Reveal, and Best Story on Sexual Misconduct in the Media Industry, which went to Amy Brittain and Irin Carmon for their Washington Post story on Charlie Rose’s sexual misconduct.
Thrilled to introduce the epic @thesheilanevins at today’s mirror awards. And she even gave out her phone # when it was her turn to speak. #thisdoclife #mirrors18 pic.twitter.com/VSDonQpocc
— ELC (@erinleecarr) June 14, 2018