Byron Allen to Receive Dressler Leadership Award at 2024 Mirror Awards

MLK50: Justice Through Journalism to be honored with Lorraine Branham IDEA Award at the June 13 event in New York City, while CNN anchor and national correspondent Erica Hill will serve as master of ceremonies.

Byron Allen, the founder, chairman and CEO of Allen Media Group, will receive the Fred Dressler Leadership Award at the 2024 Mirror Awards on June 13 in New York City.


Headquartered in Los Angeles,  Allen Media Group  owns 27 ABC-NBC-CBS-FOX network affiliate broadcast television stations in 21 U.S. markets and 12 24-hour HD television networks serving nearly 300 million subscribers. Allen Media Group is the first African American-owned multi-platform media company producing and distributing wide-release motion pictures and content for all platforms.

The Dressler Award is given to individuals or organizations that have made distinct and consistent contributions to the public’s understanding of the media. Past recipients include: Judy Woodruff, senior correspondent at PBS; Jorge Ramos, anchor with Univision Noticias; Sheila Nevins, executive producer and former president of HBO Documentary Films and Family for Home Box Office; legendary journalist Tom Brokaw of NBC; and Dean Baquet, executive editor of The New York Times.

MLK50: Justice Through Journalism, an award-winning nonprofit digital newsroom in Memphis, Tennessee, focused on the intersection of poverty, power and policy, will be honored with the Lorraine Branham IDEA Award. Accepting the award will be founding editor and publisher Wendi C. Thomas.

Established in 2021 in honor of late Newhouse Dean Emerita Lorraine Branham, the IDEA Award recognizes a media organization that has worked to promote inclusion, diversity, equity and accessibility over the previous year. Specifically, the award acknowledges the hiring and development of leadership talent who create change, both to the organizations they oversee and the content they produce. The inaugural Lorraine Branham IDEA Award went to Brown Girls Doc Mafia. Previous recipients also include The 19th News and Amplifier.

Master of Ceremonies


CNN anchor and national correspondent Erica Hill will serve as master of ceremonies for the evening. An award-winning journalist and veteran of morning TV news , Hill most recently anchored HLN’s “On the Story with Erica Hill,” a daily, New York-based daytime news program. 

During her CNN tenure, Hill co-hosted six CNN/Sesame Street Town Hall specials for families about COVID-19, one of which earned the network’s first-ever Daytime Emmy Award nomination. Hill was also part of an NBC News team that won a Peabody Award in 2013. Two years later, the Alliance for Women in Media honored her with the Gracie Award for Outstanding Correspondent.

About the Mirror Awards

The Dressler and IDEA awards are the featured non-juried prizes at the annual Mirror Awards event. The ceremony will be held again this year at the Edison Ballroom in midtown Manhattan.

Established by the Newhouse School in 2006, the Mirror Awards honor the reporters, editors and teams of writers who hold a mirror to their own industry for the public’s benefit.

The competition is open to anyone who conducts reporting, commentary or criticism of the media industries in a format intended for a mass audience. Eligible work includes print, broadcast and online editorial content focusing on the development or distribution of news and entertainment. Winners are chosen by a group of journalists and journalism educators.

This post has been updated to add that Hill will serve as master of ceremonies. It was originally published April 16, 2024.