Allegheny College Seeking Nominations for Second Annual Prize for Civility in Public Life

2013 Winners to be Announced in February at National Press Club

Aug 16, 2012, 10:00 ET from Allegheny College

MEADVILLE, Pa., Aug. 16, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Allegheny College, one of the nation's oldest liberal arts colleges, announced today that it is accepting nominations for the 2013 'Allegheny College Prize for Civility in Public Life.' Political commentators Mark Shields and David Brooks were presented with the inaugural award earlier this year at a ceremony at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C.

In its second year, the Civility Prize again will honor individuals who are passionate advocates in our political debate, yet still – over time or in a singularly important moment, demonstrated meaningful civility and respect for opposing individuals or viewpoints. Each year, Allegheny College will honor two recipients, one from each side of the political spectrum.

"Mr. Shields and Mr. Brooks are perfect examples of what it means to demonstrate civility while still proudly championing their own individual beliefs," said Jim Mullen, Allegheny College President. "At Allegheny College, we believe that one of the most effective – and until now, neglected – ways to increase civility in our national political conversations is to honor individuals who have shown such respect and courtesy to their counterparts in the public sphere. I look forward to reviewing, together with our advisory committee, this year's nominations and honoring another pair of political leaders who are doing the right thing and setting an important example for our nation."

President Mullen said the need for such an award is greater than ever.

"Our Center for Political Participation research has shown that in the United States, civility in political coverage has dropped significantly, with potentially catastrophic consequences for our democracy," said President Mullen. "The Civility Prize recognizes individuals who continue to handle and settle their disagreements in a respectful manner."

Allegheny College is currently accepting nominations for the 2012 Civility Award. To submit a nomination form, receive more information on the award or view Allegheny College's work on civility in politics, visit

All nominations will be evaluated by the College's Civility Prize Committee. The Civility Prize Committee includes:

  • Christian Allison, former CEO of Tollgrade Communications, Allegheny College trustee
  • Molly Broad, president of American Council on Education, former president of University of North Carolina system
  • David Brooks, 2012 Prize for Civility in Public Life winner, New York Times columnist, "PBS NewsHour" commentator
  • Mark Campbell, Ridge Policy Group partner, former chief of staff to Pennsylvania Governor Tom Ridge, and Allegheny College trustee
  • Tony Dias, Jones Day partner
  • EJ Dionne Jr., Washington Post columnist
  • Jane Earll, Pennsylvania state senator and Allegheny College trustee
  • Mark Gearan, Hobart and William Smith College president
  • Brian Harward, associate professor at Allegheny College, and director of Allegheny College's Center for Political Participation
  • Jim Mullen, president, Allegheny College
  • Chris Potter, Pittsburgh City Paper editor
  • Chuck Queenan Jr., K&L Gates partner
  • Tim Reeves, Neiman CEO, former press secretary to Pennsylvania Governor Tom Ridge, and Allegheny College trustee
  • Tom Ridge, former governor of Pennsylvania
  • Mark Shields, 2012 Prize for Civility in Public Life winner, "PBS NewsHour" commentator
  • David Shribman, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette vice president and executive editor
  • Eddie Taylor, Oswald Companies vice president and Allegheny College Board of Trustees chairman
  • Dan Thomasson, former editor, Scripps Howard News Service
  • Bob Woodworth, Advance Publications Special Advisor, former CEO of Pulitzer, Inc., former publisher and president of Kansas City Star, and Allegheny College trustee

The Civility Prize Committee will make recommendations to President Mullen. President Mullen will determine the two winners who will be announced in Washington, D.C. early next year.

About Allegheny College

Allegheny College is a national liberal arts college where 2,100 students with unusual combinations of interests and talents develop highly valued abilities to explore critical issues from multiple perspectives. A selective residential college in Meadville, Pa., Allegheny is one of 40 colleges featured in Loren Pope's "Colleges That Change Lives" and is also featured in "Harvard Schmarvard: Getting Beyond the Ivy League to the College That Is Best for You" and Peterson's "Competitive Colleges, 400 Colleges That Attract the Best and the Brightest," among many other guidebooks. Allegheny will celebrate its 200th anniversary of learning at its picturesque campus in 2015.

About the Center for Political Participation at Allegheny College

In October 2002 Allegheny College established the Center for Political Participation, a national center dedicated to encouraging greater political involvement among young people by fostering an appreciation for the vital link between an engaged, active citizenry and a healthy democracy. Seeking new strategies and mechanisms for promoting political participation, the Center has established programs for three audiences – Allegheny students (campus activities), scholars nationwide (scholarly research) and citizens of the wider community (educational outreach). In November 2007, the Center founded the Soapbox Alliance, a group of institutions that are committed to ending the practice of holding closed campaign events in campus facilities. Former President Clinton endorsed the Soapbox Alliance in a speech he made at Allegheny on April 19, 2008.

Jenna Lefever

SOURCE Allegheny College