The National Newspaper Publishers Association (NNPA) this week honored Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) with the 2018 Newsmaker of the Year Award during the annual Black Press Week event in Washington, D.C.

“In all of my years of covering news in our community, Senator Harris has been one of the smartest, most fearless, steadfast and caring politicians that I have come to know,” said Dorothy Leavell, NNPA chairperson. “The Hon. Kamala Harris, the second African American woman and first South Asian American senator in U.S. History, is an outstanding choice for the NNPA’s 2018 Newsmaker of the Year Award.”

The NNPA also recognized Harris’ efforts to increase wages for working people, reform the criminal justice system, and expand healthcare access for all Americans.

“In all of my years of covering news in our community, Sen. Harris has been one of the smartest, most fearless, steadfast and caring politicians that I have come to know,” said Amelia Ashley-Ward, chairperson of the NNPA Foundation. “She has a lot to offer the world…we are so fortunate to have her advocating on our behalf.”

The theme of this year’s Black Press Week is “Celebrating 191 Years of the Black Press of America: Publishing Truth to Empower.” Black publishers, media professionals, civil rights leaders and lawmakers from across the country attend the annual event, which will conclude this weekend with Democratic strategist and author Donna Brazile delivering the keynote address on the state of the Black Press in America.

“When John B. Russwurm and Samuel E. Cornish printed that first issue of Freedom’s Journal they sought to empower Black people to determine their own destiny and to define themselves,” Leavell added. “How iconic, that in 2018, our theme still rings true: ‘Publishing Truth to Empower.’”

Black Press Week featured sessions on business development, education reform, and sickle cell disease. Outstanding leaders in the Black community will be honored during the Torch Awards Dinner.

The Torch Award recipients are: Dr. Amos Brown, the pastor of the San Francisco Third Baptist Church; Rep. Barbara Jean Lee (D-Calif.) and James Farmer, a senior consultant for General Motors.

“The NNPA Foundation, under the leadership of Chairman Amelia Ward, the publisher of the Sun Reporter in San Francisco, Calif., has chosen some of the most outstanding leaders and trailblazers in the Black community to receive Torch awards, this year,” Leavell said.