Serena Shim Award

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Honors non-mainstream journalists who continue to tell challenging truths in difficult times.

The Serena Shim Award for Uncompromised Integrity in Journalism is a Prize honoring non-mainstream journalists who continue to tell challenging truths in difficult times.

About The Award

The Prize is awarded by the Association for Investment in Popular Action Committees, an umbrella nonprofit based in the San Francisco area, with some connections to the Syria Solidarity Movement. Paul Larudee, the group’s treasurer, describes himself as a former US government advisor to Saudi Arabia and Palestine activists.[1]

The funds provided by this Award, a cash amount in the range $2500-5000[2], is meant to "enable these courageous journalists to continue their work in an environment that penalizes them for their clarity of vision and willingness to expose the powerful."[3]

Honoring Serena Shim

Serena Shim (1985-2014) was an American journalist working for Iranian broadcaster Press TV. Reporting from the Turkish-Syrian border, she reported about fighters from ISIS crossing from Turkey into Syria, disguised in trucks carrying the symbols of NGOs and the World Food Programme. Serena told her employers that she was threatened by Turkish intelligence and accused of espionage. Two days later, she was suddenly killed in a suspicious car accident in October 2014, the circumstances of which have remained murky since that time. When she was threatened by the Turkish intelligence, she continued to report despite her well-founded fears, and paid the ultimate price for her uncompromised integrity in journalism.


Bellingcat described the Prize as "a shadowy group that supports Syrian dictator Bashar-al Assad is giving thousands of dollars" to fellow travellers - "far-right activists, conspiracy websites, YouTube personalities, and WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange."[4]

The Bellingcat attention means that the Prize has been thoroughly searched by Western intelligence agencies, and that they have come up with nothing illegal, even filing errors.