Last Modified: Wednesday, December 05, 2012 1:32 AM
Longtime American Press Sports Editor Scooter Hobbs will serve as keynote speaker at the Hector San Miguel Fund award luncheon, which is set for noon Thursday at L’Auberge Casino Resort.
Shawn Martin, a longtime American Press reporter, has been selected as this year’s recipient of the Hector San Miguel Memorial Fund award. The award honors San Miguel, an award-winning American Press reporter and editor who died in 2009 of complications from leukemia.
Hobbs is replacing Jeff Pearlman as keynote speaker. Pearlman, a nationally known sports author, had to cancel because of a family emergency, said Sonny Marks, fund advisory board chairman.
Hobbs, who was close friends with both San Miguel and Martin, started at the American Press in 1979. He has been named Louisiana Sports Columnist of the Year nine times and Louisiana Sportswriter of the Year four times.
During his career, Hobbs has received more than 70 first-place writing awards.
Hobbs has covered all six of LSU’s baseball national championships, the Tigers BCS football national championships in 2003 and 2007, their Final Four appearances in 1981, 1986 and 2006, and the New Orleans Saints Super Bowl victory over the Indianapolis Colts in 2010 in Miami. Also — relevant especially this week — he covered the state championship game the last time Barbe was in it in 1980.
The Hector San Miguel Fund award is given each year to a person who has “produced outstanding achievements in journalism”; has shown a “relentless pursuit of the truth”; or whose work has “made a substantial, positive impact on Southwest Louisiana.”
Martin, who worked at the Press for almost 20 years, died Feb. 15. He was 48.
During his career, he won several Louisiana Press Association and Associated Press Managing Editor writing and photography awards. He was the newspaper’s longtime Beauregard Parish bureau chief in DeRidder. He also served as a photographer and photo assignments editor at the paper’s Lake Charles office.
“Shawn was an incredible journalist who brought national acclaim to the American Press,” Marks said. “He broke the story on how Washington lobbyist Jack Abramoff took advantage of representing the Coushatta Tribe.”
Jim Beam, retired American Press editor, political columnist and the first recipient of the Hector San Miguel Fund award, hired Martin. He called him “a fearless reporter who never hesitated to take on the political giants of this state and this nation.”
Martin will be honored at the luncheon and his family will be there to receive the award in his honor. The award comes with a stipend. Past award recipients are Beam and Vincent Lupo, longtime American Press courthouse reporter.
Doors for the luncheon will open at 11:30 a.m.; the program will begin at noon.
For more information, call the foundation at 491-6688 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.