Franklin Pierce Selects Candy Crowley and Andrew Scher for Fitzwater Honors

May 2, 2010

Franlink Pierce Logo

The host of CNN’s "State of the Union" and senior political correspondent, Candy Crowley, and the executive producer of "The Doctors", Andrew Scher ’88, will be honored with the 2010 Marlin Fitzwater Medallions for Leadership in Public Communication on Monday, May 3, in ceremonies on the Rindge campus. The event, which is open to the public, will be held at 4 p.m. in Pierce Hall. Nalina Shapiro ’10 will be this year’s Master of Ceremonies.

Crowley and Scher will receive the awards in the 7th annual presentation to honor individuals who have made significant contributions to public discourse in the spirit of a healthy democracy. The award reflects the mission of the Fitzwater Center for Communication at Franklin Pierce: to educate leaders of conscience in public communication by engaging intellects, challenging perspectives and teaching skills in a state-of-the-art facility in Rindge, N.H. The award is named for Marlin Fitzwater, former press secretary to presidents Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush. Fitzwater is a Franklin Pierce trustee and serves on the Fitzwater Center Advisory Board. He will make the formal presentation to Crowley and Scher.

In addition to the presentation of the Fitzwater Award for Leadership, Fitzwater Medallions will be awarded to:

• Franklin Pierce graduating senior Robbie Michaelson of Brookline, N.H.
• Franklin Pierce graduating senior Bailey Gaffney of Manakin Sabot, Va.
• High School English and journalism teacher Gordon Lang of Kingswood Regional High School in Wolfboro, N.H.

Fitzwater Leadership Medallion honoree Candy Crowley played a pivotal role in CNN’s American Votes 2008 coverage as a member of the Peabody Award-winning "Best Political Team on Television," traveling to both conventions, every debate and additional stops along the campaign trail. It was during this period that she encountered Fitzwater Center students as they covered the New Hampshire Primary. Among her most vivid memories as a reporter, Crowley counts the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina in the Gulf Coast; the impeachment trial of President Clinton; Election Night 2000; ceremonies marking the 40th anniversary of D-Day on the beaches of Normandy; Ronald Reagan’s trips to China, Bitburg and Bergen-Belsen; the night the United States bombed Libya; and the terrorist bombing of the U.S. Marine barracks in Beirut.

In 2005, Crowley was honored with the Edward R. Murrow award and the Joan Shorenstein Barone Award for excellence in journalism for her reporting on the 2004 presidential election. In 2004, Crowley won the Gracie Allen Award in the "National News Story-Series" category for "War Stories" and a National Headliner and a Cine award for CNN Presents: Fit to Kill. In 2003, Crowley won an Emmy for her work on CNN Presents Enemy Within. Crowley’s career has been set in the heart of our nation’s politics since her graduation from Randolph-Macon Woman’s College. Her roots are in general assignment reporting, but she has distinguished herself also in covering Congress and the White House.

Fitzwater Leadership Medallion honoree Andrew Scher ’88 is one of the executive producers of the #1 New Syndicated Talk Show, "The Doctors," distributed by CBS Television Distribution and earning a Daytime Emmy nomination after its first season. Prior to joining "The Doctors", Scher was a senior producer at "Dr. Phil". Scher was a producer at NBC where he served as the supervising producer of "The John Walsh Show" (Host of "America’s Most Wanted") and oversaw on-location specials including, "Modesto: The Search For Laci Paterson," "Salt Lake City: Elizabeth Smart Found Alive" and "Washington, DC….The Signing of the Amber Alert." He was the supervising producer on the nationally syndicated dating-reality series, "Change of Heart," Travel Channel’s "This Job’s A Trip," a reality show in which people are given the opportunity to test drive their dream job; and executive producer of TLC’s "Operation Homecoming," a five-episode, primetime special reuniting soldiers with their families as they returned home from Iraq. He also served as executive producer of "Design Invasion," a home makeover show from FOX Television and the first design show to be in National Syndication.

Scher’s past television credits include: Production Executive on Discovery Health’s "Dr. G Medical Examiner" and "Skeleton Stories," The History Channel’s "American Eats," the Food Network’s "Behind The Bash," We’s "Hollywood Hair Affair," the Game Show Network’s "Game Show Network Hall of Fame," National Geographic’s "Everyday Things" and The Weather Channel’s "It Could Happen Tomorrow." Scher graduated from Franklin Pierce University with a bachelor's degree in Communications. He and his wife, Michele, live in Calabasas, Calif. with their two children.

Other recipients of the Fitzwater Medallion for Leadership in Public Communication include: Luke Russert, NBC News correspondent; Dana Perino, former Assistant to the President and Press Secretary at the White House, 2008; Steve Scully, C-SPAN senior executive producer and political editor, 2007; Kenneth Walsh, White House correspondent for U.S. News & World Report; 2006; Sen. Chuck Hagel (R-Neb.), 2005; and Victoria Clark, Deputy Secretary of Defense for Public Affairs, 2004.

Robbie Michaelson ‘10, a member of the Pierce Media Group and Fitzwater Fellow, was a leader in multiple student media outlets, including The Pierce Arrow, FPTV, WFPC-LP 105.3 FM and online. Michaelson was part of the Center’s 2008 New Hampshire Primary coverage and covered the Democratic National Convention in 2008. Michaelson will graduate this May with a degree in mass communication (journalism) and a minor in political science and plans to continue his career as a reporter and eventually start his own publication or broadcast business.

Bailey Gaffney ’10 is a strong campus leader, serving the University in multiple capacities, including as President of the Student Government Association as well as the Young Republicans. Gaffney received the Publius Award for excellence in the field of political science for her work with the Engaging Students: First In the Nation program her sophomore year. In her role with Student Government, she worked diligently with the Rindge Board of Selectmen to hold voter registration drives on campus. Gaffney will graduate this May with a degree in political science and plans to pursue her degree in real estate law and practice in South Carolina.

Gordon Lang teaches English, creative writing and journalism at Kingswood Regional High School in Wolfboro, N.H. The newspaper and literary magazine his students produce are consistent first-place award winners with the American Scholastic Press Association. Outside of the classroom, Lang hosts the Poets in the Attic poetry group in Wolfeboro and has a slim volume of his own work, No Match for a Scarecrow. Lang and his wife Cheryl breed gypsy horses, the small draught horses with the big hair that pull the caravans in England and Ireland, at his home, Aisling Farm.