From the editor
Bringing home the gold
Along with marking the 120th anniversary of the founding of the American Federation of Labor and the 30th anniversary of the release of the Eagles' Hotel California, Dec. 8, 2006, brought some accolades upon Santa Clara Magazine: a gold medal for excellence in magazine writing.
The top honor, presented for a series of articles published in 2005-06, was announced at the awards ceremony for the Western Region District of the Council for Advancement and Support in Education (CASE) as part of its annual banquet, held in Los Angeles. While SCM took home the gold, silver and bronze medals went to the University of Southern California and Brigham Young University.
The gold medal was based on five pieces that, as a group, show the remarkable range that this magazine takes as its brief: "After America," an interview with Thomas Reese, S.J., by Deepa Arora, SCU’s director of media relations; "Justice Delayed: Reopening the Emmett Till Case," by Margaret Russell, associate professor of law at SCU; "Gigantes y Cabezudos," an illustrated essay exploring the art of cartoneria, with photos by Charles Barry and writing by Elizabeth Kelley Gillogly '93; "Who Cares About Biodiversity?" by Miriam Schulman, communications director for SCU's Markkula Center for Applied Ethics; and "The Man Behind the Sound," a profile of sound and video recording pioneer Jack Mullin '36, by Karen Crocker Snell, SCU media relations officer.
The biggest feather for the cap goes to Margaret Avritt, SCU's director of marketing, who accepted the award on behalf of the magazine. All five articles were written under her tenure as acting editor for SCM. Like Margaret, I find it especially gratifying to see writers who are alumni, faculty, and staff recognized for their work. The pieces also capture a sense of the richness that the University offers, and they raise some of the big questions we try to tackle in these pages: from the future of the Catholic church and how we come to terms with our nation's past of racial injustice to art, technology, and the survival of the planet.
Given this issue's cover feature, which asks, "Are people getting crazier?" that survival may not seem guaranteed. But along with reportage from the front lines of mental disorders in the new millennium, psychologist Thomas G. Plante offers some prescriptions for society as well.
Steven Boyd Saum