Graduate School Alumni Society Humanitarian Award
Penn State Graduate School alumnus James McClure received the Graduate School Alumni Society Humanitarian Award. This award recognizes an alumnus/alumna holding a graduate degree from Penn State who has made a positive societal impact on the welfare of humankind beyond the responsibilities of one’s profession.
McClure received his master’s degree in American studies at Penn State Harrisburg in 1994. He received his bachelor’s degree in journalism at the University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown in 1976.
A recurring theme among those who wrote letters of support is that McClure has consistently applied his graduate education in American studies to effect positive social change.
In the view of one nominator, the progress that has been made toward the City of York Pennsylvania’s revival can, in no small part, be credited to McClure’s community involvement and humanitarian efforts, which include the pursuit of social progress and justice.
“More than anyone else in York’s history, Jim McClure has been instrumental in bringing York back by not only making the citizens of the area aware of their rich cultural heritage, but also in fostering pride in the community. That pride is one of the factors affecting the current revitalization of downtown York,” wrote the nominator.
Referred to as “a model of civic engagement”, McClure has gone into local schools to inspire youth to get involved in the community, and encouraged city officials and school board members to embrace racial and cultural diversity.
Through social media, presentations during public forums, and books on the region’s history that he has authored, McClure has helped to influence public policy-making and enhance the quality of life for all in the greater York area. As one of McClure’s colleagues noted, “Each and every book, speech, and blog post has been yet another gift to his community.”
McClure has been the editor of the York Daily Record/Sunday News since 2004. He also serves as regional editor for the Atlantic Group of Gannett’s USA Today Network, overseeing six newsrooms in Pennsylvania, Delaware and Maryland.
Concurrent with his role as editor for the Daily Record, McClure was East Region Editor for Digital First Media for over two years. In this role, he oversaw twenty-four newsrooms and served as senior editor for on-site teams that covered the school shootings in Newtown, Connecticut, and the Boston Marathon bombing.
McClure has received numerous awards in recognition of his professional achievement and community service. These include the Pennsylvania NewsMedia Association’s Ben Franklin Award for Excellence and York County Heritage Trust’s Heritage Profile Award.