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Adjunct Professor Mark Di Ionno Is Finalist for Pulitzer Prize

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Mark Di Ionno toured hurricane-ravaged homes at the Jersey shore as research for his Star-Ledger column.

Mark Di Ionno, a Star-Ledger columnist and Rutgers-Newark alumnus who has taught journalism and media studies at Rutgers University, Newark, for the last four years, has been named a finalist for the 2013 Pulitzer Prize in commentary. The Pulitzer board said Di Ionno was nominated for “his hard-hitting columns on Hurricane Sandy, the death of a gay college student and other local events and issues.” His columns are archived at http://blog.nj.com/njv_mark_diionno/index.html

Di Ionno is the t hird Newark College of Arts and Sciences (NCAS) faculty member to be honored by the Pulitzer board.  History Professor James Goodman also was a finalist in 1995, in history, for his book, Stories of Scottsboro, while the 2009 Pulitzer in history was awarded to Annette Gordon-Reed, then a history professor at Rutgers-Newark, for The Hemingses of Monticello: An American Family.

“The competition is this category is very tough, and I am really proud to represent Rutgers-Newark in this way,” said Di Ionno. “I’ve always loved Rutgers-Newark and keep coming back to it.”

He added, “I am so proud of the Star-Ledger and the work we do. What I did was nothing more than my part as a team member of our hurricane coverage. The muscle that the Ledger puts into big stories energizes me and my competitive adrenaline shoots up like mercury in a boiling thermometer. This is a team accomplishment.”

Di Ionno, who graduated from NCAS in 1984, is also the author of the novel, The Last Newspaperman (Plexus Publishing, 2012), and three New Jersey travel books, including 2002’s Backroads, New Jersey: Driving at the Speed of Life

Media contact: Carla Capizzi, capizzi@rutgers.edu